According to Huber, the MIA acquired the statue in 1947. The museum exhibited the statue for years as an example of pre-Columbian artistry. In the 1950s it loaned the statue to museums in Rome, Berlin and other European cities.
Molly Huber, Assistant Curator, African, Oceanic, and Native American Art
So obviously Huber chose this object because it was a fake and it illustrated an important point. And by the way Huber did include in this show a superb Veracruz yoke from the the collection that is certainly authentic.
Maybe the more important point is do our museums in fact really honestly pursue the issues of authenticity within their collections or do they just offer political lip service to a serious problem. Museums and their problems do not lend themselves to simplistic descriptions or easy solutions. Any museum director must carefully weigh all the implications and ramifications of any decision.;however, there is not much that is more fundamental to the success of an institution than their credibility in representing their collections honestly. As an important teaching tool, I wish more museums would openly display their fakes as a teaching tool for their members.