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Bali in a Golden Age

Miguel Covarrubias and Bali at Museum Pasifika Through December 15, 2013

(10/11/2013) 

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During the recent APEC Conference in Bali, Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto officially opened an exhibition at the Museum Pasifika in Nusa Dua dedicated to Mexican artists and anthropologist Miguel Covarrubias who lived and worked in Bali in the early 1930s.
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The exhibition runs until December 15, 2013.

A self-style anthropologist and talented artist, Covarrubias' work has stood the test of time, remaining evergreen while the works of his Bali contemporaries, such as Margaret Mead, have failed to stand the same test of time.

Still in print seven decades after its publication in 1937, Covarrubias’ “Island of Bali” remains an outstanding compendium on Balinese art and culture, in many ways as fresh and informative today as it was when it was written 75 years ago.

Miguel Covarrubias was a fashionable member of New York society in the 1930s, working as a cartoonist for Vanity Fair. Honeymooning in Bali in 1930, Covarrubias was smitten by the island and resolved with his filmmaker wife, Rose, to return to Bali for an extended period of study and admiration.

That second trip, a short time later, resulted in films and laid the groundwork leading to his landmark book on Bali published later in the decade - Island of Bali.

After the book's publication, Covarrubias was commissioned to produce six large murals that were exhibited in the San Francisco World’s Fair of 1939-1940.

A multi-talented man who died too young at aged 53 in 1957, Covarrubias was a cartoonist, ethnologist, artist and even directed a ballet during his artistically consuming but short lifetime.

The current exhibition “Miguel Covarrubias Y Bali” (Miguel Covarrubias and Bali) runs through December 15 at the Museum Pasifika in Nusa Dua and features 115 drawings, painting and photographs demonstrating the remarkable range of this remarkable Mexican.

The Museum Pasifika also has a regular collection of more than 600 artworks by more than 200 artists form 25 countries.

Museum Pasifika
Complex Bali Tourism Development Corporation (BTDC)
Block P
Nusa Dua 80363, Bali
Telephone: +62-(0)361774935