Vue de l'exposition "Sexe, mort et sacrifice dans la religion Mochica"
09 Mar 2010 23 May 2010

Sex, death, and sacrifice in Moche religion

The exhibition "Sex, death and sacrifice in the Mochica religion" brings together for the first time in Europe 134 Mochica ceramics depicting sexual or sacrificial acts with a surprising level of realism. These ceramics depict the links established by the Mochica populations between religion, power, sexuality and death.

About the exhibition

This amazing religious iconography, in which the sexual act meets the sacred, is unique in Precolumbian art and specific to Mochica mythology.

It represents sacrificial acts, predominantly of a sexual nature between animals and/or anthropomorphous figures.

The Mochica craftsmen moulded these non-reproductive rites into their pottery, using stylized sexual attributes as the leitmotifs of an iconography that served a ritual purpose. The boldness of the graphic motifs reflect the strength of their beliefs.


Steve Bourget offers certain insights to help interpret this sexual imagery which, far from expressing the Moche's daily lives, refers in fact to a political and religious ideology that is characteristic of their society. This ideology attaches great importance to the reproduction of the governing authority in order to ensure the proper evolution of society of the universe as a whole.

  • Categorie : Exhibitions
  • Curator

    • Steve Bourget, associate professor of the Department of Art and History of Art at the University of Texas, Austin

    Scientific advisor

    • Anne-Christine Taylor, head of the department of research and education at the musée du quai Branly
  • Place:   Mezzanine est
  • TimeSlots:  
    From Tuesday 09 March 2010 at Sunday 23 May 2010
  • Closed on monday
    Tuesday, Wednesday, Sunday:  11:00 am-07:00 pm
    Thursday, Friday:  11:00 am-09:00 pm
  • Public:   All publics
  • Permanent Collections
    Full price:  10,00 €
    Reduce rate:  7,00 €

    Click here to see all rates