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Unpacking the Universe








Type of activity



In Person

Free (service charges apply)

Wednesday May 31, 2023 at 05:30 pm

To highlight the opening of the exhibition Portable Universe: Thought and Splendour of Indigenous Colombia, curator Erell Hubert will share the major steps involved in bringing this project to life. Her talk will draw on excerpts from the documentary series Unpacking the Universe, specially produced for the exhibition by the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA).

This lecture will be followed by a conversation with Julia Burtenshaw and Diana Magaloni, co-curators of Portable Universe*.

Erell Hubert, Curator of Pre-Columbian Art, MMFA, and curator of the Montreal presentation.
Julia Burtenshaw, Associate Curator – Art of the Ancient Americas, LACMA
Diana Magaloni, Deputy Director, and Program Director and Dr. Virginia Fields Curator of the Art of the Ancient Americas, LACMA


Public Partners: Government of Quebec, Canada Council for the Arts, Conseil des arts de Montréal

About the speakers
As curator of pre-Columbian art at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, Erell Hubert, has been guiding the direction of this collection since 2016. She also works to enrich and enhance the collections from the Mediterranean basin, Africa and Oceania. At the Museum, she was co-curator of Connections: Our Artistic Diversity Dialogues with Our Collections (2019) and Peru: Kingdoms of the sun and the Moon (2013). She holds a doctorate in Andean archaeology from the University of Cambridge (2015), and is still actively pursuing field research on the north coast of Peru. Her research, published in several scientific journals, draws on this dual experience and explores the relationship between people and the material world through notions of materiality, of object biography, including ethics of provenance and the history of collections, and of the active participation of artworks in identity negotiation.

Julia Burtenshaw is Associate Curator in the Program for the Art of the Ancient Americas at the LACMA. She holds a doctorate from the University of East Anglia, United Kingdom, with an expertise in Pre-Columbian ceramics of South America.

Diana Magaloni is Deputy Director of the LACMA, where she is also Program Director and Dr. Virginia Fields Curator of the Art of the Ancient Americas, and the Director of Conservation. Her recent publications include Picasso & Rivera: Conversations Across Time (2016).


Reservation terms: Reservations are required. Any seats remaining within 30 minutes of the start of the lecture, however, will be given away free of charge.

Location: Maxwell Cummings Auditorium, 1379-A, Sherbrooke Street West

*Language: The lecture will be given in French, and the question period will be bilingual.

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