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Charm Necklace

Arts of the Americas

On View: Arts of the Americas Galleries, 5th Floor
Among the Tukano of the northwestern Amazon, stories abound of visits to the animal world, of people turning into animals to learn about their habits, and of animals teaching men how to utilize certain resources. Shamanic knowledge contains detailed descriptions of these encounters, and many shamans, or payés, claim to have acquired wisdom from animals that revealed an unexpected food source or a cure for illness. This necklace with finely carved animal and human figurines may have been worn by a payé to acknowledge this relationship.

Entre los Tukano del Noreste Amazónico, abundan las historias de visitas al mundo animal, de gente que se convierte en animales para aprender sus hábitos, y de animales enseñando a los hombres cómo utilizar ciertos recursos. El conocimiento chamánico contiene descripciones detalladas de estos encuentros, y muchos chamanes, o payés, dicen haber adquirido sabiduría de los animales para encontrar comida en algún lugar inesperado, o curas para enfermedades. Este collar con figurillas humanas y animales finamente talladas puede haber sido usado por un payé en reconocimiento de esta relación.
MEDIUM Palm nut, seeds, plant fiber
DATES 20th century
COLLECTIONS Arts of the Americas
MUSEUM LOCATION This item is on view in Arts of the Americas Galleries, 5th Floor
CREDIT LINE Gift of E.R. Squibb and Sons
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CAPTION Tukano. Charm Necklace, 20th century. Palm nut, seeds, plant fiber Brooklyn Museum, Gift of E.R. Squibb and Sons, 61.89. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 61.89_acetate_bw.jpg)
IMAGE overall, 61.89_acetate_bw.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph
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Tukano. <em>Charm Necklace</em>, 20th century. Palm nut, seeds, plant fiber Brooklyn Museum, Gift of E.R. Squibb and Sons, 61.89. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 61.89_acetate_bw.jpg)