Its sometimes difficult to tell the difference between contemporary art and art made by primitive people. The surrealists in particular were so inspired by primitive art that they collected it and incorporated it into their work. Ancestors of the Lake: Art of Lake Sentani and Humboldt Bay, New Guineais the latest exhibit at The Menil Collection to display the highly stylized, abstract forms in primitive art. (And it comes on the heels of the newly installed Pacific Islands gallery.)
The exhibit includes about 50 pieces from the north coastal region of New Guinea, which was explored extensively in the late 1800s through the early 20th century, resulting in important anthropological studies, publications and exhibits displaying the unique art of the Lake Sentani and Humboldt Bay region.
Its a rare chance to see primitive works mostly held in European collections. 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Wednesdays through Sundays. Through August 28. The Menil Collection, 1515 Sul Ross. For information, call 713-525-9400 or visit www.menil.org. Free.
Wednesdays-Sundays. Starts: May 6. Continues through Aug. 28, 2011