A view of biodiversity at Colombia's Museum of Gold

15 April 2011 | News story

The Museum of Gold and Alexander Von Humboldt Institute organized an exposition for the International Year of Biodiversity that illustrated the way that antique goldsmiths related to animals and plants.

As a means of recognizing the contributions made by the ecosystems, species and genes to our everyday lives, the year 2010 was declared by the United Nations as the Year of International Biodiversity.

In Colombia, one of the megadiverse countries of the planet, the Alexander von Humboldt Research Institute led the celebration in order to create awareness as to why biodiversity is not just a biological issue but one that belongs to a complex network of social, cultural and economic factors, immersed in the heritage of the nation.

As a result, the public was invited to observe the permanent exposition at the Gold Museum through a different perspective. The visitors examined the prehispanic, indigenous art and their representations of nature, making contrasts between the legacy and the current biodiversity heritage that is fundamental for our present and future.

Together with the Gold Museum, which preserves, researches and promotes the legacy of more than 2,500 years of history represented in the goldsmith work of our arquelogical cultures, the Alexander Von Humboldt Research Institute organized the national biodiversity inventory and created awareness of the issues surrounding the event.

The goal to significantly reduce the current rate of biodiversity loss, determined by the UN for the year 2010, could not be reached.

Due to human activity, currently the number of species becoming extinct are a thousand times more than what they would be if they had been lost to natural causes. One out of four mammals and one out of three amphibians are on their way to extinction. The species that were presented in the exposition are part of the cultural legacy and the natural heritage that we depend on. The exposition was an important contribution made by the Humboldt Institute and the Gold Musuem, one that urges for necessary reflection and awareness of the environment.

Image No 1.
Scientific Name: Turbinella angulata
Common Name: Caracol (Colombia), pata de burro (México)
A marine snail living in shallow waters and amply distributed in the Caribbean. Up to 40cm long, this snail is subject to commercial exploitation.

Image No 2.
Snail Shell, Calima Valle – Yotoco Period, 200 a. C. -1300 d. C.,
Restrepo (Valle del Cauca), 14,8 x 30 cm
 

 

For more information, contact:

Claudia María Villa García. Communications Coordinator. Alexander von Humboldt Institute. cmvilla@humboldt.org.co

Claudia Alfonso. Photography Selection. Communications Department. Alexander von Humboldt Institute. comunicaciones@humboldt.org.co

Raúl Antonio Riveros. Content Administrator. Communications Institute.Alexander von Humboldt Institute. raul.antonio.riveros@gmail.com