Skip to content Skip to navigation



With more than two million objects in the Maxwell Museum collections, there a lot of stories to tell.  Learn some of them here.

Ganado rug,  MMA 63.47.1

Ganado Rug. Artist unknown, ca. 1930. (MMA 63.47.1)

Object Monday: Ganado Rug

Posted on: Monday, February 22, 2021 - 6:00am

This Navajo weaving in the Ganado style features a central motif of stepped hourglass shapes surrounded by terraced zig-zag lines and terraced “v” shapes on the sides in black, white, red, and natural wools. The overall dimensions of the rug are... read more

Seated Woman, Lagunillas Style E, Nayarit, Mexico, c. 300 BCE-300 CE, artist unknown (MMA 2006.66.2)

Seated Woman, Lagunillas Style E, Nayarit, Mexico, c. 300 BCE-300 CE, artist unknown (MMA 2006.66.2)


Object Monday: Identities in Clay

Posted on: Monday, February 15, 2021 - 12:00pm

With this post, the Maxwell Museum of Anthropology and UNM Art Museum Student Advisory Board (UNMAM SAB) are launching a new online collaboration featuring UNM museum collections and the work of student researchers. Today's post features the work... read more

Cochineal insects (2012.178.12a)

Cochineal insects (2012.178.12a)

Object Monday: Cochineal

Posted on: Monday, February 8, 2021 - 11:15am

Cochineal is a magenta-colored dye that is derived from tiny parasitical insects (Dactylopius coccus) indigenous to Mexico, South and Central America, and the American Southwest. Mesoamericans have been cultivating the insects and dyeing with... read more

Bamileke elephant box (2019.12.1)

Bamileke elephant box (2019.12.1)

Object Monday: Bamileke Elephant Box

Posted on: Monday, February 1, 2021 - 10:30am

This fully-beaded elephant-shaped box with lid was made by the Bamileke people of West Cameroon, Africa. The body and head of the elephant are carved from a solid piece of wood, and covered with beadwork over its entire surface. The beads are... read more

Maku Wichetty Grubs, by Dawn Nipper, ca. 2005

Maku Wichetty Grubs, by Dawn Nipper, ca. 2005

Object Monday: Maku Wichetty Grubs

Posted on: Monday, January 25, 2021 - 6:15am

This painting on canvas by Australian Aboriginal artist Dawn Nipper is entitled “Maku Wichetty Grubs.” It depicts four bands of purple radiating out from a central black and white circle. Each band has two white grubs with orange dots at their... read more

Ci wara headdress (MMA 79.13.1)

Ci wara headdress (MMA 79.13.1)

Object Monday: Ci Wara (Chi Wara) headdress

Posted on: Monday, January 18, 2021 - 6:00am

Art historians consider the ci wara (first documented in print in 1912 by a Frenchman as “Tyi Ouara”) to be the iconic African sculpture.  France colonized the region of West Africa now known as Mali (République du Mali) that included the Bamana... read more

Pictorial Weaving by Atsuma Blackhorse

Object Monday: Pictorial Weaving by Atsuma Blackhorse

Posted on: Monday, January 11, 2021 - 7:15am

This pictorial rug by Atsuma Blackhorse has a gray background with the central motif of a stylized Mimbres rabbit and a stylized Hopi (Sikyatki-style) bird, likely an eagle. There is a maroon border with grey and black geometric double hooks and... read more

Object Monday: Kuaua Vessel

Posted on: Monday, January 4, 2021 - 9:00am

This tall jar is utility ware vessel. As the name implies, this jar was used for everyday activities such as holding water, cooking, or other domestic uses at Kuaua Pueblo located north of Albuquerque at the Coronado Historic Site.

Utility... read more

Santa Clara Nativity Scene by Dorothy and Paul Gutierrez

Object Monday: Santa Clara Pueblo Nativity Scene by Dorothy and Paul Gutierrez

Posted on: Monday, December 14, 2020 - 2:00pm

This blackware ceramic “Nacimiento” or nativity scene was made by Santa Clara potters Dorothy and Paul Gutierrez around 1975. It includes angels, animals, Mary, Joseph, and baby Jesus. A small wooden manger, made in... read more

Ellen and Angie Smith weavings

Object Monday: Pine Spring Weavings by Ellen and Angie Smith

Posted on: Monday, December 7, 2020 - 2:45pm

These two rugs were woven by Ellen Smith (left), a master weaver, and her granddaughter Angie Smith (right), who was age 14 at the time. They were both entered in the 1961 Gallup Intertribal Ceremonial, where Ellen won a special award and Angie... read more