Museum of Anthropology
06.27.2014 - 06.27.2014
Woke up to rain in Vancouver, perfect day for a visit to the Museum of Anthropology on the campus of the University of British Columbia. We actually determined that the best way to travel was by city bus. We walked a couple blocks to the bus station and, with some help from a bus person, found the right machine to get our tickets. The MOA, as it is known to the locals, was clear across town and was about a 40 minute bus trip with one transfer. The MOA is renowned for its displays of world arts and cultures, in particular works by First Nations peoples of the Pacific Northwest Coast First Nations . As well as being a major tourist destination, MOA is also a research and teaching museum, where UBC courses in art, anthropology, archaeology, conservation, and museum studies are given. MOA houses 38,000 ethnographic objects, as well as 535,000 archaeological objects in its building alone. The most iconic object in the Museum is probably the yellow cedar sculpture The Raven and the First Men by Bill Reid, which was depicted on the Canadian twenty-dollar bill from 2004 to 2012 . The Museum contains several large Musqueam artifacts from the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, as well as many contemporary works commissioned from Musqueam artists such as Susan Point, Joe Becker, and Robyn and Debra Sparrow. The Museum's Great Hall contains many fragments of totem poles from Haida and other First Nations villages along British Columbia's coast. There are approximately 2800 objects in the African collection. The earlier collections came to MOA via missionaries, travelers, and ex-colonial officers. The collection includes masks, Yoruba thorn carvings, over 100 Makonde figures from Tanzania, approximately 100 Asante gold weights, weaponry from South Africa and about 100 mortuary objects from Egypt. After several hous at the MOA we returned to the room for a little R&R. We then set out for the Gastown District and dinner at the Water Street Cafe which was fabulous. Margaret had crab cakes and gnocchi (good not great) and I had a caprese salad and veal scallopine. Gastown is a national historic site. Diectly across the street from the WSC is one of Vancouver's main tourist attractions, a steam clock. The steam clock is one of only a few still in existence and it's whistle sounds every hour on the hour, accompanied by a puff of...what else...steam. For such an important tourist attraction, the steam clock was stuck on 4:27 during our entire stay. We left the restaurant and began walking toward the hotel when we happened upon the Vancouver Tower. We had obtained tickets to the VT when we first arrived but never quite got around to it. It was nearly sunset and we ascended to the tower and it is pretty spectacular. It is one floor beneath a revolving restaurant, although the floor we were on did not revolve. It did have spectacular 360 degree views of Vancouver and we got some really nice photographs which I will try to add at some point. We then came across Bacchus restaurant, which I had seen during my reseach for the trip. I knew it had a piano bar and so we went in for dessert and port...the piano player/singer was quite good. We shared a lemon tart and then walked back to the hotel for a game of doms...Marg still 0 for Canada!! Tomorow...Whistler.