The Anthropologic Museum of Contemporary Art also known as MAAC for its acronym in Spanish, is part of the Simon Bolivar Cultural center that was inaugurated on July 30, 2003 and comprises an area of more than 10.000 square meters.
The Museum aims to reinforce the institutional cultural heritage of the city through collections from the aborigine and modern eras. As a complementary task, the Museum also offers comprehensive programs that include exhibitions, conferences, forums, film projections, performing arts, an auditorium for 400 people and an esplanade for outdoor activities in order to promote the cultural heritage at the service of the country.
The history of the museum dates back to 1950 when several archeological researches were carried out in the Ecuadorian coast that discovered pieces of great historical and archeological value. By then, the Central Bank of Ecuador decided to establish a museum in Guayaquil, which was called “Archeological, Ethnographic and Modern Art Latin American Museum” and was located at the old building of the Central Bank in Pichincha Avenue.
Dr. Olaf Holm was appointed as director of the museum in 1974 and organized and increased the funds in order to acquire more archeological and art pieces. In 1980, the name of the museum was changed to “Anthropological Museum of the Central Bank of Ecuador” and was moved to a new location in 9 de Octubre Boulevard and Jose de Antepara Street.
The Anthropologic Museum of Contemporary Art “MAAC” was opened to the public in 2004 and in 2008, the complex comprised by the MAAC, an specialized library, the documentary center, an auditorium and workshops, was named as “Libertador Simon Bolivar”. The same year, through a general disposition from the Reformatory Law of Monetary Regime and the State Bank, the cultural areas of the Central Bank were transferred to the Ministry of Culture of Ecuador.
A place full of art and culture that exhibits the ancestral wealth of the Pre-Columbian era of Ecuador and Latin America. The exhibition comprises a collection of 50.000 Ecuadorian archeological pieces from the aborigine times of the Ecuadorian coast comprised between the year 8.000 BC and 1.400 AC, besides another collection of more than 3.000 modern art pieces.
The building has an architectural design that takes as conceptual reference one of the fundamental creations of the cultural process of the Ecuadorian coast: a raft from the Manteño-Huanvavilca pre-Columbian culture, traditional of an ancestral, warrior, aborigine culture of Guayaquil. A mural painted by artist Manuel Rendon Seminario can be appreciated in the façade, whose original design was worked in pastel chalk.
The Museum also offers permanent exhibitions regarding the archeology and history of Ecuador, as well as galleries of contemporary art and a small library of national authors. The auditorium is frequently used for cultural events like concerts, conferences and also as a movie theater. The terrace serves for outdoor artistic performances.
The cultural center Libertador Simon Bolivar, besides the museum, offers: six exhibition rooms, three video-art rooms, lobby and a cafeteria for conferences, concerts and meetings, among other cultural activities; an auditorium with a capacity for 350 people that includes the MAAC Cinema project, artistic and academic activities; three rooms that carry out educational workshops and programs for children, youths and adults; a library that contains a complete collection of archeology, history and art volumes, which include more than 20.000 publications; a documentary center that offers a digital system that has access to the cultural funds, with a small auditorium; and a library that exhibits and sells several publications.