Oxford

On my birthday, I took the day off and went to Oxford.

To the Museum of Natural History and then at last to the Pitt Rivers Museum. In the modern extension I found the Visiting with the Ancestors exhibition.

What happens when museum objects go home for a visit? The Blackfoot shirts at Pitt Rivers Museum, collected in 1841, express Blackfoot culture and beliefs. In 2010, Museum staff took them home to Canada for a visit so that Blackfoot people could learn from them and strengthen cultural knowledge and identity. Blackfoot people were delighted to see these important heritage items and were inspired by them. The exhibition includes three of the shirts and quotes and photographs from the reunions with Blackfoot people.

A pity, in many ways that the Blackfoot shirts can’t be restituted to the Blackfoot people.

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