From the earliest known incarnations in twelfth-century Rome through the present, carnival season has allowed participants to play.

Rich or poor, young or old—all break loose, often in unusual ways. In Laza, Spain, celebrants might throw dirt and ants at neighbors. On the other side of the Atlantic, in Recife, Brazil, throngs gather to play frevo music or dance thepasso, while in Tlaxcala, Mexico, men burlesque as French dandies. In New Orleans, the famed Mardi Gras krewes don outlandish costumes and parade
the streets.

This exhibition provides windows into eight communities in Europe and the Americas where carnival is a high point of the yearly cycle. ¡Carnaval! features individuals who have dedicated much of their lives to planning, creating, and carrying out the festivities. Images, video, costume pieces, and masks from their performances relate the history and cultural traditions, while conveying the importance and function of community building through play.

¡Carnaval! is accompanied by a full-color catalog.

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!Carnaval! toured September 2008 through October 2013.

This exhibition has completed its tour and is no longer in circulation. This page is for archival reference only.

  • September 1–October 20, 2009 Piedmont Arts Association
    Martinsville, VA
  • November 10, 2009–January 7, 2010 El Museo Latino
    Omaha, NE
  • January 28–March 16, 2010 El Museo Latino
    Omaha, NE
  • April 6–May 25, 2010 Minneapolis Central Public Library
    Minneapolis, MN
  • June 16–August 11, 2010 Central Floria Community College
    Ocala, FL
  • September 1–October 20, 2010 Lake Jackson Historical Museum
    Lake Jackson, TX
  • November 10, 2010–January 7, 2011 Refurbishment
    Kansas City, MO
  • January 28–March 16, 2011 Cherokee Strip Land Rush Museum
    Arkansas City, KS
  • April 6–May 25, 2011 New Mexico State University
    Las Cruces, NM
  • June 16–August 11, 2011 New Mexico State University
    Las Cruces, NM
  • September 1–October 20, 2011 Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture
    Seattle, WA
  • November 10, 2011–January 7, 2012 Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture
    Seattle, WA
  • January 28–March 16, 2012 Museum of the Gulf Coast
    Port Arthur, TX
  • April 6–May 25, 2012 Spurlock Museum of World Cultures
    Urbana, IL
  • June 16–August 11, 2012 Spurlock Museum of World Cultures
    Urbana, IL
  • September 1–October 20, 2013 Loves Jazz and Art Center
    Omaha, NE
  • November 10, 2012–January 7, 2013 Brigham City Museum
    Brigham City, UT
  • January 28–May 25, 2013 Saint Mary's College Museum of Art
    Moraga, CA
  • June 16–August 11, 2013 Port Huron Museum
    Port Huron, MI
  • September 1–October 20, 2013 Washakie Museum & Cultural Center
    Worland, WY
  • January 28–March 16, 2014 Worcester Center for Crafts
    Worcester, MA

Related Reading

Additional Resources

Fact Sheet

Exhibit Checklist

Exhibit Schedule

Exhibit Script

Programming Guide

Registrar’s Packet

Press Kit Available Upon Request

Exhibition Details & Specifications

  • Curated By

    Dr. Barbara Mauldin, Curator of Latin American Collections, Museum of International Folk Art

  • Organized By

    Museum of International Folk Art, Santa Fe, NM
  • Content

    130 items of international folk art and Carnival memorabilia,  including masks, hats, dance props, throws, musical instruments, and costume pieces; includes 6 full costumes on mannequins; 15 fabric photomural panels; 10 display pedestals; 7 costume display railing assemblies; 5 video monitors; and 13 hands-on materials (musical instruments, puzzles, and 2 flipbooks); 22 text panels; 1 credit panel

  • Duration

    7-week display

  • Rental Fee

  • Support

  • Shipping:

    The maximum out of pocket shipping expense is $1,000. Exhibitor will coordinate with the M-AAA registrar for all outgoing transportation arrangements.

  • Security


  • Square Feet


  • Number of Crates/Total Weight

    15 Crates / 5600 lbs.

  • Insurance

    The exhibition is fully insured by M-AAA at no additional expense to you, both while installed and during transit.