Inside USD

“Mugs of the Mesas” Showcases Southwestern Art

Thursday, April 10, 2008

eastsouthwest100.jpgA new exhibit at USD’s David W. May American Indian Gallery features nearly 50 prehistoric mugs and bowls from the May Collection and explores the history of ceramics from the Southwest.

“The exhibit focuses on an interesting and unusual type of prehistoric pottery found in the Four Corners regions of the American Southwest between A.D. 1000 and 1280,” said Tim Gross, the exhibit curator. These single-serving vessels or mugs “are found in sites like the Cliff dwellings of Mesa Verde and at sites in Chaco Canyon,” he said.

Also on display are the Mimbres bowls from the May collection with “beautiful depictions” of life forms on their interiors, he added.

swpotterystyles100.jpgIn addition to Gross’ work, Paul Johnson designed the exhibit which features photographs by William Lile.

The free exhibit will be open from 1:30 – 3:30 p.m. on Wednesdays and by appointment in the May gallery in Room 214 of Serra Hall. The exhibit will run through November. To arrange a viewing or learn more about the exhibit call (619) 260-4238 or click here.

The David W. May American Indian Collection was bequeathed to the University of San Diego in 1994 by Zama May, in honor of her late son, David, who attended the university from 1969 to 1975 and tragically died of cancer at age 22.

Members of the May family were avid enthusiasts of the Southwestern United States and were especially interested in American culture and traditions. They traveled extensively, starting in the 1950s, camping throughout the deserts of the Southwest and visiting many of the most remote and inaccessible areas.

The collection now includes more than 1,700 objects, including basketry, pottery, wood carvings, jewelry, textiles, folk art, musical instruments, paintings, fetishes, ceremonial costumes and accessories, stone tools, weapons, cradleboards and dolls.

  • Share/Bookmark