11 November 2021 – 20 February 2022
The Joseph Hotung Great Court Gallery
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This exhibition invited visitors to step into the vibrant world of Peru and discover how people have thrived for millennia in one of the most complex and challenging environments on the planet.
Marking Peru's bicentennial year of independence, this exhibition highlighted the history, beliefs and cultural achievements of the different peoples who lived here from around 2500 BC to the arrival of Europeans in the 1500s, and their legacy in the centuries that followed.
From Peru's early indigenous peoples to the ill-fated Inca, this exhibition explored how past cultures were shaped by the diverse landscapes of the central Andes, flourishing at some of the highest altitudes and in some of the driest deserts on earth. Visitors discovered how they developed unique approaches to time, agriculture, economy and power, some of which endure today.
The exhibition featured objects from the British Museum's collection, including pottery, precious metals, textiles and ritual paraphernalia, as well as extraordinary pieces borrowed from Peru itself. Striking, large-scale photography and videos of iconic sites, including the Nasca geoglyphs and Machu Picchu, also gave visitors a vivid sense of place and an appreciation of the artistic and architectural prowess of ancient Andean cultures.