033-035 Museum of International Folk Art collection information


Dublin Core


033-035 Museum of International Folk Art collection information


A printout from the website of the Museum of International Folk Art describing the museum and Alexander Girard's collection.




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Columbus, Ind.

Is Part Of

301 Washington Street Collection (C0001), Series I. Subseries b., Box 1 Folder 11, Columbus Indiana Architectural Archives, BCPL Archives, Bartholomew County Public Library, Columbus, IN; 301 Washington Street: Cornerstone of Columbus, Indiana (digital collection).

Bibliographic Citation

Museum of International Folk Art collection information, 3/27/2002, 1/11, 301 Washington Street Collection (C0001), Columbus Indiana Architectural Archives, BCPL Archives, Bartholomew County Public Library, Columbus, IN.


Bartholomew County Public Library

Text Item Type Metadata


Printout of a website
Typewritten text (sheet 1):
World Folk Objects http://www.moifa.org/PermanentCollections/worldfolkobjects.html
MOIFA world folk objects
The worldwide collection of folk objects, mainly from the late 19th and 20th centuries, may well be the most important such collection in the world. The core collection of 4500 objects given to the museum by founder Florence Dibell Bartlett remains one of the museum's most important holdings. Many of the objects were collected during the first half of the century when few people were actively acquiring such works, particularly on an international basis. In 1978, the collection was greatly enhanced with the gift of the Alexander and Susan Girard collection. This collection of more than 100,000 objects is so vast in scope that the museum's physcial plant had to be doubled in size in order to adequately store and interpret it. It is a collection that is unique in part because of its size: since the Girards collected "multiples" intentionally, there is great depth to the holdings in many village traditions that are represented only superficially in other collections that contain similar folk materials. The breadth is also staggering: more than 100 countries are represented by the Girard collection alone. The collection includes religious folk art (ex-votos and milagros, nativities, icons), toys and dolls, textiles of all kinds, costumes, masks, paintings, beadwork, and more.
Part at my passion has always been to see objects in context. As a collector who was often able to visit the workshop of the artist, and see the actual environment in which a piece was made. I’ve often felt that objects lose half their lives when they are taken out of their natural settings. . . . I believe that if you put objects into a world which is ostensibly their own, the whole thing begins to breathe. --Alexander Girard
[illustration] Mexican Musicians. Ocotlan de Morelos and Coyotepec, Oaxaca, and Rio Balsas area, Guerrero
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Typewritten text (sheet 2):
World Folk Objects http://www.moifa.org/PermanentCollections/worldfolkobjects.html
Alexander and Susan Girard spent a lifetime collecting material that often escapes preservation. They looked for beauty, humor, whimsy, enthusiasm, spontaneity and directness. Objects were elected to illustrate humankind's universal need to give form to a sense of ornament, play, delight, and wonder.
Alexander Girard, a leading architect and interior and textile designer in the second half of this century, designed the permanent exhibition, "Multiple Visions: A Common Bond," which displays more than 10,000 pieces from the collection in the Girard Wing at the Museum of International Folk Art. More than a million visitors have passed through the doors into the special world of Girard since the exhibition opened in 1982. Currently, the museum's holdings are augmented not only through gifts, but the active formation of field-based, documented collections. In recent years, collections focusing on the traditional arts of Turkey, ceremonial and festival arts of Latin America, and in the United States, work by the recipients of the prestigious NEA National Heritage Fellowships, have all been assembled by the museum's curators and by folklore colleagues working with the communities being studied.
[illustration] Skeleton, Celaya, Guanajuato, Mexico. Painted papier-mâché and crepe paper, 24 in. high, c. 1965, Skeletons going about their daily business satirize life.
All works presented on this page are from the Girard Foundation Collection with photographs by Michel
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Typewritten text (sheet 3):
World Folk Objects http://www.moifa.org/PermanentCollections/worldfolkobjects.html
Permanent collections
spanish colonial art
contemporary southwestern hispanic art
international textiles and costumes
world folk objects
Spanish Colonial Art | Contemporary SW Hispanic Art | International Textiles and Costumes
Recycled, Re-Seen | MOIFA Home | Who We Are
©1997 Museum of International Folk Art, Santa Fe, New Mexico
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Museum of International Folk Art (N.M.), “033-035 Museum of International Folk Art collection information,” BCPL Archives, accessed October 29, 2020, https://bcplarchives.omeka.net/items/show/92.