In an unusual still life, a selection of Pre-Columbian artifacts of the Chimu people of Peru takes center stage.
Interestingly, the pottery of the Chimu is not a rarity, and if one wants, one can find it for sale from various museums who have too much of it in their collection: it was made, and used by, ordinary people, for the ordinary aspects of their lives. Uncovered by gold and silver and precious gems, it is thought to be of little worth because it is not covered with the baubles and rocks and stones that we treasure so much.
But the value of the pottery of Chimu lies in its sheer ordinariness, because, thought we are stuck with kings and princes and emperors and dukes and presidents and prime ministers and all sorts of people who are convinced that they are more important than others, ordinary people are who and what make up the bulk of humanity, and of history.
It is awe-inspiring to pick up a piece of pottery such as one shown in Chimu – in holding it, one wonders, “Who...