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Atua: Sacred Gods from Polynesia

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Don't look now but the Saint Louis Art Museum in Forest Park (314-721-0072 or www.slam.org) has the scoop of scoops. And if it's too modest to crow about it we'll do the shouting, as this is truly a special occasion. "This" is Atua: Sacred Gods from Polynesia, a brand-new exhibit organized by the National Gallery of Australia. What's so notable about this show is that SLAM is the exhibit's sole venue in the entire United States. Featuring 60-plus iconic Polynesian sculptures on loan from museums and private collections around the world, Atua: Sacred Gods from Polynesia focuses a meticulous lens on the intimate relationship between objects of art and Polynesian constructs of atua, such as gods, ancestors and spirit beings. The artworks are studied as material embodiments of the eternal ethereal -- atua, or spirit. This exclusive American residency is open Tuesday through Sunday (October 12 through January 4, 2015), and tickets are $6 to $12. Admission is free on Friday.

IMAGE CREDIT: Rapa Nui (Easter Island); Female figure (moai papa), probably early 19th century; wood, bone, obsidian; Otago Museum, Dunedin, New Zealand.
Tuesdays-Thursdays, Saturdays, Sundays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Fridays, 10 a.m.-9 p.m.; Fridays, 10 a.m.-9 p.m.; Tuesdays-Thursdays, Saturdays, Sundays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Starts: Oct. 12. Continues through Jan. 4, 2014

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