For Mexico, minerals have marked national milestones hence there are several ways to narrate the country's history and one of them is through these materials. It is a collection of dozens of objects that allow us to travel through the country from pre-Hispanic times to the Revolution.
The minerals found on national soil can show from the religious feeling (one of the pieces shown is a pre-Hispanic flint dagger used in human sacrifices) to the curiosity for the Universe and its origins (a fragment of the Allende meteorite, one of the celestial bodies most analyzed by astronomers and geologists, is also exhibited).
The exhibition was conceived as a space where mineralogy could be related to anthropology or economics, something that is fulfilled, for example, in the fact that the Olmecs used them five thousand years ago for symbolic purposes or that during the Viceroyalty silver deposits strengthened the power of the Spanish crown.
One advantage was that, to mount the exhibition, it was not necessary to bring objects from America, the pieces were loaned by the Museum of Natural History of France, the Musée de l'Éphèbe de Cap d'Agde and the Museum of Art and History of Brussels, and by private collections as well as the Sorbonne University.
According to the curators, the exhibition is designed for the visitor to intuit why minerals are inorganic bodies and objects with anthropological and sacred, historical and political repercussions, as well as bodies of interest for those who work in the social sciences, hard sciences or aesthetic studies.
Mexique, histoires minérales is organized by CEM UNAM-France, the Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle and the Sorbonne University. It will remain open until December 4 of this year.
The CEM UNAM-France began activities on March 30, 2015 and has established a strategic alliance with the Sorbonne University. The exhibition Mexique, histoires minérales is just one of many projects developed jointly. It is no surprise that these two institutions work together; in fact, when the National University was inaugurated in 1910, one of the first people to visit was a professor from the Sorbonne.
This alliance has allowed the integration of a UNAM-Sorbonne Université chair of excellence, which enables Mexican and French academics to change their places of work in order to broaden the spectrum of their research and enrich their vision with another culture. This agreement also allows for the publication of dozens of books a year.