British Museum in London. Latin madness including mariachi musicians, Mexican food, papier mâché altar offerings, dancing skeletons, crystal skulls...
In the shop, little retablo boxes were doing a roaring trade. Tiny boxes of clay, wood and papier mâché with little models inside them - domestic scenes, religious scenes, historical scenes. Retablo boxes arrived in South America from Spain as small portable wooden religious altars used to instruct. They took on a new form: florally decorated boxes with animated figures inside that incorporated indigenous beliefs but also reflected local, everyday life, and a more diverse view of death. In amongst the little collection in the Museum shop, the King. Elvis as the incomprehensible, veneratable dead. Elvis católico. Snake-hipped Elvis in the skeleton dance.
Elvis' death and the material and beliefs that have become attached to it is going to be a recurrent theme I think. Thanks: Freeo.