Exhibit donated by agriculture scientist to Linfield

Linfield will soon be opening its latest exhibit, “Of Earth, Of Fire,” a pre-Columbian ceramic exhibit from Elvin A. Duerst, an agricultural scientist, who donated his work to Linfield College in 2007.

“The collection was donated after Duerst passed away by his family, and what is on display is about [two-thirds] of it,” Keni Sturgeon, adjunct professor of anthropology and sociology said. “We created the exhibit that is on display using and focusing on his collection of objects.”

The exhibit will feature indigenous visual art of the Caribbean, North, South and Central America from the 16th Century. The ceramics from this era have helped anthropologists read the culture of such native cultures, including philosophies, aesthetics, religions, world views and cosmologies.

Three students from the anthropology department in 2009 conducted some of the research on the artifacts for a class final, which are now currently being displayed in the exhibit.

In 1937, Elvin A. Duerst graduated from Oregon State College, now known as Oregon State University, with a degree in agriculture economics.

After college, he worked for Montana Extension Service as a county agent in 1940. He later pursued a career as an international agricultural economist for the United Nations.

He passed away in the McMinnville community in 2003.

Many pieces of Duerst’s work and research related to his investigations can be found in the archives at the Oregon State University Library at Oregon State University, including publications, research data, reports, photographs, scrapbooks, maps and administrative flow charts.

The is also information regarding his include biographical information, records of his years as a student at Oregon State College and when he received his master’s at University of Illonios.

The archives also hold Duerst’s personal artifacts, correspondence and materials from his art collection.

There are about 400 photographs, 14 volumes, in the archives of Duerst’s investigative work to China, Latin America Duerst did a lot of investigations on the agricultural development of many countries, including Paraguay, Brazil, Bolivia, Peru, El Salvador and other countries in Central America.

For more information about Duerst and the archives at Oregon State University contact Oregon State University Libraries Archives at archives@oregonstate.edu.

The exhibit will open on Tuesday, Oct. 22 in the Linfield College Anthropology Museum in Walker Hall.

On the same day, a reception will be held at noon for the opening of the exhibit.

The exhibit will be open to the public, hours of the museum is 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

And for more infotainment regarding “Of Earth, Of Fire” exhibit at Linfield contact Sturgeon at ksturge@linfield.edu.

Mariah Gonzales / Culture editor

Mariah Gonzales can be reached at linfieldreviewculture@gmail.com

The work of Elvin A. Duerst, an agriculture scientist for the United Nations, will be displayed in the “Of Earth, Of Fire” exhibit opening Oct. 22 in the Anthropology Museum in Walker Hall.

Photo courtesy of oregonstate.edu