UNLV Anthropology Lecture – Forgeries Are Real: “Non-Authentic” Objects in the Peruvian Antiquities Market


Mar. 27, 2023, 11:30am to 12:30pm
Show Recurring Dates

Campus Location

Office/Remote Location

Room 212 or virtual


Dr. Maria Fernanda Boza Cuadros from the University of Amsterdam discusses their research on the Peruvian antiquities market at this semester's Anthropology Proseminar Series. 

European ethnographic museums are riddled with Peruvian archaeological objects, many of them looted, gathered, commercialized, and transported to Europe along with other plundered commodities. Among these collections, however, are plenty of artifacts of recent manufacture currently under different epistemological regimes. Some replicas were commissioned by collectors to populate their holdings with desired pieces, while others were commissioned by museums themselves for similar reasons. Other objets manufactured in the last quarter of the nineteenth century have been by and large classified as forgeries; I call these neo-antiquities. These works have seldom been exhibited, and are more often found in the back of storage rooms, only to be acknowledged as curiosities. Yet this treatment hides all that recent manufactures included in archaeological collections can say about collecting and curating extra-European works. Here I focus on the context of manufacture of neo-antiquities, their distribution across European museums, and the sources and challenges for investigating them. I underscore the importance of their study as it pertains to the implications for elucidating collectors’ desires and aesthetic views, and to understand how some museums have contended with the neo-antiquities in their holdings.

Admission Information

This event is open to the public. Please join us in person or attend virtually via Webex.

Contact Information

Department of Anthropology
Matthew Montalto