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Matahoata at Musée du Quai Branly

Submitted on May 9, 2016 - 6:55pm
Matahoata exhibition catalog cover
Matahoata exhibition catalog cover

Carol Ivory (MA 1982, PhD 1990) began seriously studying the art of the Marquesas Islands, French Polynesia, while a PhD student. Her dissertation focused on Marquesan art from 1774-1821. After graduation, she became a professor, and the majority of her career was spent at Washington State University where she ultimately became an associate dean before retiring in 2014. Ivory continued her Marquesan research while at WSU, and she was given the Manu Daula (Frigate Bird) Award by the Pacific Arts Association in 2013. Read more about the award and Ivory in this WSU profile.

Since her retirement, Ivory's primary focus has been curating for the Musée du Quai Branly in Paris the most comprehensive exhibition to date featuring Marquesan art. Three hundred objects were gathered for the show.

The exhibition, titled Matahoata, opened in April 2016 and will remain up until July 24 of this year. Some images of the show may be viewed in this public Facebook album. A two-day symposium took place on April 12 and 13, and there is also an exhibition catalog titled Mata Hoata: Arts et société aux îles Marquises, much of which was written by Ivory (in French).

Now that her Matahoata project is completed, Ivory plans to finish a book about the lives of several generations of high ranking women on the island of Nuku Hiva whose lives document the changes that occurred in the archipelago after contact with the West, from the 18th to the 20th centuries.

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