PENDLETON -- Metaphors: Pottery and Politics of the Ancient Maya, opened today at Tam?°stslikt Cultural Institute, 47106 Wildhorse Boulevard.
A world-renowned collection of ancient Maya painted pottery, excavated by the University of Pennsylvania Museum nearly a century ago and reinterpreted in light of recent research in the field, provides the centerpiece for the exhibition.
It runs through June 3.
Painted Metaphors yields new clues to understanding everyday life and changing politics of the ancient Maya of Guatemala 1,300 years ago.
"The year 2012 seemed like a propitious time to learn more about the ancient Maya, what with all the popular writings about the end of the Maya calendar.
"We thought it's time for a down-to-earth exhibit about a fascinating ancient civilization that not many of us know much about," said John Chess, Tam?°stslikt Development Officer, in a press release.
At the center of the exhibit are almost two dozen recently conserved Maya painted vessels from Cham?°, a Maya village in the highlands far from the more sophisticated lowland centers of Maya culture.
It was here that museum archaeologist Robert Burkitt discovered brilliantly painted pottery, unlike anything else the region had ever produced.
The exhibition includes a rare focus on the ordinary Maya, with material that reflects the ancient way of life -- more than 150 ancient artifacts, including figurines, jade carvings, musical instruments, weaving implements, burial urns, cave offerings, and more.
Additionally, the exhibition features photos and video of Maya life in the village of Cham?° today.
The official website of the exhibit is paintedmetaphors.org. Tam?°stslikt is open six days a week, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday-Saturday. For more details, call 541-429-7723.