PERUVIAN NATIONAL DAY IN THE MUSEUM OF ETHNOLOGY OF LEIDEN
The National Museum of Ethnology of the city of Leiden was the venue for the official reception for the 197 anniversary of our independence, organized by the Embassy of Peru in the Netherlands last 26 July, with the attendance of members of the diplomatic corps, officials of International organizations and international courts located in The Hague, officials from the Dutch Government, Peruvian businessmen, among others.
In this occasion our guests could know a sample of our ancestral culture, by witnessing a ceremony of transfer of a Moche Textile that was held by the museum. The aforementioned textile, dated from the years 600 to 800 AD, was left in custody of the National Museum of Ethnology by a Dutch citizen with the intention of returning to our country upon our request. The return of this piece meant a coincidence of good will between the intervening institutions and an expression of the Peruvian-Dutch friendship. During the ceremony the Ambassador of Peru Carlos Herrera and the Chief Curator of the Museum, Henrietta Lidchi, signed a document that sealed the transfer of the good, to be sent to the custody of the National Museum of Peru in Lima. The piece was exhibited this night for the first and only time in the Netherlands.
They also inaugurated the exhibition “Criticism and compassion: 'Felipe Guamán Poma de Ayala - 17th century Inca writer in the spotlight” about the life and work of this author, produced in collaboration between the Embassy of Peru and the National Museum of Ethnology, which was composed of panels that reflect passages of the work of the author, complemented by relevant pieces of the own collection of the museum and two works by the Peruvian painter Enrique Polanco, which were loaned by the author for this occasion.
Guaman Poma, who, according to its own testimony, is descendant from Inca nobility, was born a few years after the traumatic events of the capture and later execution of the Inca Atahualpa in hands of Pizarro and his troops. His fundamental work was a letter that he wrote to the King of Spain – Phillip III – denouncing the abuses, injustices and inequities of the colonial system in Peru. This letter, of over 1200 pages, from which close to 400 are drawings, are what is known today as the “New Chronicle and Good Government”. Apparently, the letter never reached its destination. In 1907 the manuscript was rediscovered in the Royal Library of Copenhagen, where it had arrived in the XVII century. Today this exceptional document is registered in the archives of the UNESCO Memory of the World.
The exhibition will remain in the National Museum of Ethnology of Leiden until 7 July 2019, we invite everyone to go and see it.