Digital Exhibit

The MMWC online exhibition site has launched with a digital version of Ojibwe Public Life, Ostrom Private Lives, an exhibition that features works by late 20th-century Ojibwe artists of Manitoulin Island, Canada, collected by Elinor and Vincent Ostrom.

As with the gallery exhibition that preceded it, a team of IU graduate students curated the digital exhibit with partial project support from the IU College of Arts and Sciences Ostrom Grants Program and the Indiana University Bloomington Libraries. The MMWC's digital exhibitions site is available at



Current Exhibits

During normal hours of operation, the Mathers Museum exhibition hall and Museum Store are open Tuesdays through Fridays, from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; and Saturdays and Sundays, from 1 to 4:30 p.m.

The Mathers Museum of World Cultures currently features several exhibitions:

Açaí From Local to Global examines the transition of the açaí berry from a local Brazilian commodity to a global superfood. Closes May 22, 2015

After A Miracle: Coptic Ex-Votos from the Birnbaum Collection features a selection of votive offerings from Egypt. Closes May 22, 2015

Food is Work: Tools and Traditions explores the tools and traditions used in the production of food. Closes July 31, 2015

Graces Received: Painted and Metal Ex-Votos from Italy explores votive objects offered to a saint or divinity, in gratitude for a favor, blessing, or healing. Closes May 22, 2015

Instruments of Culture provides an overview of how musical instruments around the globe are classified and studied, and why. Closes September 13, 2014

Photography from the Forest: Images by William Siegmann features photographs, taken by an IU alumnus and leading scholar, of Liberia and its people. Closes December 20, 2015

State of an Art: Women's Wall Painting in Ghana shows tradition and innovation in wall paintings by women in Ghana's Upper East Region, as documented by photographer and curator Brittany Sheldon. Closes May 22, 2015

Still/Moving: Puppets and Indonesia presents puppets, one of the oldest types of Indonesian performing arts which still persists today in many forms, as a way to better understand the dynamic peoples and places of Indonesia--focusing on Javanese, Sundanese, and Balinese cultures. Closes June 7, 2015. Read more »

Thoughts, Things, and Theories...What Is Culture? explores the nature of culture.

Upcoming Exhibits

Tell People the Story: The Art of Gustav Potthoff reveals the story of an artist who paints to remember and honor fellow World War II prisoners of war. The Traditional Arts Indiana exhibit is sponsored by the Indiana Arts Commission and the National Endowment for the Arts. Opens May 5, 2015; Closes July 31, 2015

The Collector's Eye: Photographs from the Mathers Museum Archive features selections from the MMWC photography collections documenting the people and places of the world. Opens June 9, 2015

Work Exposed: Photographs from the Early 20th Century shows images of people at work and workplaces photographed by Joseph K. Dixon during his travels across the U.S., Europe, and China during the past century. Opens June 9, 2015

Cherokee Craft, 1973 presents a snapshot of craft production among the Eastern Band Cherokee at a key moment in both an ongoing Appalachian craft revival and the specific cultural and economic life of the Cherokee people in western North Carolina. The exhibition showcases basketry in three distinct media--rivercane, honeysuckle, and white oak--crafted using a variety of distinct techniques, and also presents woodcarvings, masks, ceramics, finger woven textiles, and dolls. The works presented are all rooted in Cherokee cultural tradition but all also bear the imprint of the specific individuals who crafted them and the particular circumstances in which these craftspeople made and circulated their handwork. Opens June 16, 2015