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On the way to the Humboldt Forum: Packing up Mesoamerican and North American highlights in Dahlem

Museum Europäischer Kulturen

For nearly half a century, the Lienzo Seler II has hung undisturbed in a large vitrine in the Bornemann Room of the Ethnologisches Museum of the Staatliche Museen zu Berlin. Soon, the 16th-century Mesoamerican cotton cloth, approximately 4x4 metres in dimension, will occupy a central place in the Humboldt Forum. In preparation for the move, the vitrine was opened on 18 April 2016 for the first time since 1970.

This provides an opportunity to fully examine the Lienzo. Of primary interest are color analyses, determination of damage due to light exposure, UV absorption at sites of dramatic fading and the first-ever digital documentation of the Lienzo. The removal, cleaning and rolling of the Lienzo, along with the manufacture of packaging for its transport and its re-installation in the Humboldt Forum, are logistical efforts that will be supervised by the Museum until the moment the new vitrine in the palace is closed.

In connection with the opening of the vitrine containing the Lienzo Seler II, Viola König, Director of the Ethnologisches Museum, and Hermann Parzinger, President of the Stiftung Preussischer Kulturbesitz (Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation), have announced the de-installation of the North American exhibition. The Nulis mask, one of the future Humboldt Forum's iconic objects, has consequently been removed from its display case for subsequent restoration and packaging.