Gold Museum (Museo del Oro Quimbaya)
The Quimbaya Gold Museum (Museo del Oro Quimbaya) is a museum located in Armenia, Colombia, designed by Colombian architect Rogelio Salmona. The building prominently features both water and bricks in its exterior design. Visitors can follow the history of Colombian gold through the art and craftsmanship of the indigenous Quimbaya culture, whose artifacts are preserved in a the museum’s exhibits. The museum houses a large collection of pre-Columbian artifacts, including almost 400 gold objects, a fine ceramics collection, stone sculptures, and wood carvings. Most of the pieces originate from the pre-Columbian Quimbaya civilization, as well as the Emberá people and other Amerindian tribes. Most of the pieces have been restored and preserved by experts from the Gold Museum in Bogotá, Colombia.
Some of the museum’s most important pieces are the gold poporos (traditional devices used to store and chew sacred coca leaves) and the zoomorphic vases. Goldsmiths from this period also made realistic and stylized animal figures. Among the most frequently represented are snails and insects in a state of metamorphosis, like butterfly pupae, which may have held meanings connected to the cycles of nature. The museum has a children's library and a room for temporary exhibits, among others, and offers guided tours.
The Quimbaya Gold Museum is located in the Centro Cultural, 3 miles (5km) northeast of Armenia’s city center. To get there by public transportation, take bus 8 or 12 (traveling north) on Av Bolívar.