Feb 182004
 
Authors: Brooke Harless

The Fort Collins Museum celebrated the opening of its new

“Bringing the World Home” exhibit last Friday. The new exhibit

features folk art pieces from all over the world that have been

collected by CSU faculty and staff during their experiences

abroad.

The exhibit was described by Beth Higgins, public relations and

development coordinator, as “a small glimpse into the experiences

and lasting impacts that CSU faculty and staff travel has had on

the Fort Collins community.” Among the objects included in the

display are Iranian weight lifting dumbbells, Tibetan dolls, prayer

rugs, a Noh mask, a Canadian Inuit print and Swazi beads.

Martha Denney, CSU director of international education, who

worked in Swaziland from 1978 to 1979, lent the Swazi beads, which

are one of the most rare pieces in the exhibit. The beads were made

by the nomadic Swazi women that grinded colored glass, mixing it

with saliva and gum Arabic and baking it.

“They are the cr�me de la cr�me of African beads,”

said Denney, whose two strands date back to the 1700s.

Also on display is Denney’s Swazi fighting stick, which

resembles a cane with intricate carving at the top and were used in

fights.

“When someone is hit with the stick, you can determine whether

or not the fight was fair by analyzing the markings on the person’s

flesh which shows you what part of the stick they were struck by,”

Denney said.

James Boyd, philosophy professor, and his wife Dr. Sue Ellen

Charlton, professor of political science at CSU also put on display

pieces from their vast collection, including a bone spirit boat and

Noh mask both from Japan. The pieces collected by Boyd and

Charlton, “reflect our experiences abroad as most of our pieces are

gifts from our host families,” Boyd said.

“It was really interesting to see and read about all the

pieces,” said Liz Zipse, senior history major who attended the

opening on Friday. “A lot of the stuff has great stories behind

their origin…the Tibetan dolls were gorgeous, plus I learned that

a nak is a female yak.”

The exhibit, which is free to the public, will run through April

25.

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