Enlargements of photographs made by Donald Bush Cordry during his time in Mexico. These were mounted for a 1970s Bellas Artes-sponsored traveling exhibit based on Cordry's collection of Mexican Indian costumes. Included are images of Mexican Indians, fiestas and dances, pottery, boats, weaving, spinning, masks, vendors and markets, churches, and shrines. Depicted tribes include the Huichol, Mestizo, Tarascan, Seri, Mayo, Tepehua, Totonac, Nahua, Mazatec, Cuicatec, Chinantec, Zapotec, Mixe, Amusgo, Huave, Mixtec, Chapanec, Zoque, Tzotzil, and Maya. Additionally, there are some self portraits of Donald Cordry and his wife Dorothy.
Donald Bush Cordry (1907-1978) was an artist and photographer who studied the art of Mexican Indians. In 1931, Cordry made his first trip to Guerrero, Mexico, where he became interested in contemporary mask making. In 1934, Cordry moved to New York to work as a marionette designer for puppeteer Tony Sarg. While there, he contacted George G. Heye to learn more about Mexican Indian art. This led to a series of collecting expeditions from 1935 to 1938, during which Cordry collected Mexican masks and other artifacts for the Museum of the American Indian, Heye Foundation.
Local Call Number(s):
NAA Photo Lot 87-38, USNM ACC 361232
Location of Other Archival Materials:
Additional photographs made by Cordry can be found in the National Anthropological Archives in Photo Lot 82-14.
Donald Cordry and his wife, Dorothy Mann Cordry, also donated clothing and musical instruments from Mexico to the Department of Anthropology in accessions 361232 and 355866.
The National Museum of the American Indian Archives holds the Donald Bush Cordry collection of photographs and negatives, 1933-1940, as well as artifacts collected by Cordry.
Photographs of the Donald Cordry Mexican mask exhibit can be found in the National Anthropological Archives in Photo Lot 80-3.
The Donald Cordry Mexican mask collection can be found in the Department of Anthropology in accession 355867.
The collection is open for research.
Access to the collection requires an appointment.