Bet­ter red

Pasatiempo - - NEWS -

All the priceless pieces in The Red That Colored the World — a sump­tu­ous, eye-pop­ping new ex­hibit open­ing on Sun­day, May 17, at the Mu­seum of In­ter­na­tional Folk Art — con­tain cochineal, a red dye ex­tracted from a tiny in­sect that lives on prickly pear cac­tus in many parts of the Amer­i­cas. The hum­ble bug has played a lead­ing role in com­merce, science, pol­i­tics, and art from the pre-Columbian era to to­day. On dis­play are a chair made for Napoleon’s coun­cil room at Mal­mai­son that is up­hol­stered in red wool, an El Greco master­piece, and a cen­turies-old hooded fire­fighter’s cape from Ja­pan. On the cover is a de­tail of a beaded gown de­signed by Or­lando Dugi; photo Blair Clark.

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