photo: Richard Harris
I went to the Royal Arts and History Museum
to use my free entrance with my MNF pass which had an expiration date of March 31st. The temporary exhibit I wanted to see ended March 3rd so I decided to see as many of the permanent exhibits as possible. It turned out a be a magical experience. I saw incredible Amazonian feather costumes, Tibetan copulating Gods, elaborate Roman Vth Century mosaics, XVIIIth and XIXth Century Belgian high-end sleighs, XIXth machines, Brussels' tapestries, Antwerp woodwork, actual shrunken heads, Meuse valley metalwork, antique glass, Merovingian graves opened, glass covered and set in a reconstruction of the hill they found in, a fascinating five minute action map of the barbarian invasions across Europe from 200-600AD, a Catteau Art Deco pottery collection, and many other things including (see photo above) the only Rapa Nui statue removed from the island. It's also unique in that its top knot is part of it as opposed to sculpted separately, that it has hieroglyphics carved on it, that it has no ears, that it has legs, and that it has anatomical depictions on it. It is the God of Fishermen and came with a song written by a Rapa Nui woman to commemorate the removal of the statue. The song ends with the phrase "and they will place you in a hallowed place in Belgium and all the girls will come to honor you."