…An historic painting of great value was stolen and years later discovered in another state, an engraved spoon enigmatically framed leads to the discovery of a little known funeral practice, an outrageous scam to harvest gold from sea water is revealed…
Intriguing objects and their stories reveal an unfamiliar past of Cape Cod and the Islands in this first Cape-wide collaboration of 36 art and historical organizations on exhibition at the Cape Cod Museum of Art (CCMoA).
Pondering unsolved mysteries, questioning true or false stories and examining trash or treasures, visitors will be engaged by the fascinating truths and legends that these singular treasures preserved by each participant uncover.
“Mysteries & Revelations” brings together a wide range of objects, paintings, photographs, in this cape-wide collaboration organized by Cape Cod Museum of Art Director Edith (Deede) Tonelli in response to the New England Museum Association’s theme of “Truth and Trust: Museums in a Polarized Society” that takes place in Falmouth October 24 – 27 this year.
“How do we get to the truth?” asks Tonelli. “This exhibit shines a light on the work of Cape Cod museum professionals who are on the front lines of documenting and preserving our history. Ultimately, we—our culture and our history—are defined by the stories that we preserve and share with our community. We invite our community to enter this show with their own stories and add to our shared cultural identity.”
Some of the treasures that will be on display are:
A Mammoth Tooth from Cape Cod Museum of Natural History – a giant 12,000 year old tooth discovered during excavation of the Cape Cod Canal uncovered truths hidden for millenia.
A Family’s Decorative Hair Wreath (circa 1880) from Atwood House & Museum
This unique remembrance is believed to be created with strands of hair from members of a family. The variety of hair highlights the exquisite details of this piece by creating shadows and depth to the floral designs.
A Gravestone from the Historical Society of Old Yarmouth
A gravestone stands over a piece of HSOY property but there’s no body beneath it. Can any visitor help solve this mystery and tell us how or why it got there?
A Bronze Desk Mask of Abraham Lincoln and slave shackles from Zion Union Heritage Museum
These are stark reminders of a true history shared by the nation that is currently a major topic of discussion across the country.
A painting that belonged to PAAM that was stolen and found.
Gerritt Beneker’s “Under a Wharf” was one of the original five works donated to PAAM upon its founding in 1914. It was on loan to Town Hall and stolen in the 80s and documents show how it was discovered years later in Tucson, AZ.
CCMoA will be displaying work by Thomas Eastwood an artist whose work is in the museum’s collection but about whom little is known. The museum is asking for help from the community to discover facts about him.
CCMoA will also take part in a panel at the NEMA Conference in Falmouth on October 25th. The participants in the conference are also invited on a pre-conference tour to see the exhibition, the Cape Cinema and the Cape Playhouse.
Here is a list of participating organizations:
Artists Association of Nantucket
Atwood House & Museum
Barnstable Historical Society
Brewster Historical Museum
Cahoon Museum of American Art
Caleb Nickerson House
Cape Cod Military Museum
Cape Cod Museum of Art
Cape Cod Museum of Natural History
Centerville Historical Museum
Chatham Marconi Maritime Center
Coast Guard Heritage Museum
Falmouth Museums on the Green
Falmouth Public Library
Harwich Historical Society – out?
Heritage Museum & Gardens
Highfield Hall & Gardens
Josiah Dennis Manse Museum
Martha's Vineyard Museum
Mashpee Wampanoag Museum – out?
Nantucket Historical Association
Nantucket Lightship Basket Museum
Nye Family of America Association, Inc.
Orleans Historical Society
Osterville Historical Museum
Pilgrim Monument & Museum
Provincetown Art Association & Museum
Sandwich Glass Museum
Thornton W. Burgess Society
Truro Historical Society
W.B. Nickerson Cape Cod Archives
Wellfleet Historical Society & Museum
Woods Hole Historical Museum
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution Archives
Zion Union Heritage Museum