Water For… Life

Water is essential for life. It surrounds us, in bodies of water, in the soil, in the air, in every living thing.  Water covers approximately 71% of the earth’s surface.  Despite this prevalence, the availability of water can vary significantly by climate, environment, season and technology. It can be a matter of life or death, surviving or thriving. Access to water, availability and control over water are universal human concerns. 

Using objects from the Anthropology Museums permanent collection, this exhibition explores the relationship between human societies and water.  Anthropologists have long studied how cultures adapt to their environments.  This approach, known as cultural ecology, is employed here to demonstrate the wide cultural variability in adapting to common biological and cultural concerns relating to water. Presented in four sections, this exhibition focuses on Water for Thirst, Water for Hunger, Water for Transport and Water for Ceremony.


Curated by: Sara L. Pfannkuche based in artifacts from The Anthropology Museum