recentpopularlog in

jerryking : smithsonian   7

Henry Louis Gates Jr.: Restoring Black History
SEPT. 23, 2016 | - The New York Times | By HENRY LOUIS GATES Jr.

The opening of the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington helps to resolve the protracted debate about the contributions of black people to American history and, indeed, about whether they had a history worth preserving at all. Those questions were at the heart of the nation’s original debate about whether, and how, black lives matter.....“History,” James Baldwin wrote, “is not merely something to be read. And it does not refer merely, or even principally, to the past. On the contrary, the great force of history comes from the fact that we carry it within us, are unconsciously controlled by it in many ways, and history is literally present in all that we do.”.... the opening of the museum ...reinscribes race at a symbolically central place in American culture, on the National Mall, where we celebrate our collective public histories, ensuring that a mountain of evidence about black contributions to America will be on permanent display....More than a museum, the building on the National Mall is a refutation of two and a half centuries of the misuse of history to reinforce a social order in which black people were enslaved, then systematically repressed and denied their rights when freed. It also repudiates the long and dismal tradition of objectifying black people in museums.
slavery  Jim_Crow  history  historians  Henry_Louis_Gates  museums  Washington_D.C.  African-Americans  Thomas_Jefferson  Enlightenment  Hegel  John_Hope_Franklin  W.E.B._Du_Bois  Carter_Woodson  Arthur_Schomburg  Obama  James_Baldwin  Smithsonian  David_Adjaye 
september 2016 by jerryking
'Treasures' Without Maps: African Art Purely as Art -
MARCH 3, 2005| WSJ | By MATTHEW GUREWITSCH . "Treasures" is
announced as the first in a series of bi- or triennial exhibitions given
in honour of the silver anniversary of the National Museum of African
Art as a constituent of the Smithsonian Institution. It will focus on
traditional sub-Saharan African art not as ethnological material but
frankly, unapologetically, as art. To drive home the point, labels have
been kept minimal. They offer no interpretive assistance, and are
frequently vague or silent even as to the date of a work's creation.
There is no map.

"What does a map tell you?" asks Sharon F. Patton, the curator of the
show, two years into her tenure as the fourth director in the history of
the museum. "What does the place it came from have to do with an
appreciation of the work?" How true. Ivory Coast, Mali, Burkina Faso,
Democratic Republic of the Congo, Cameroon, Nigeria, Angola...the
mystique of the names is powerful. But mystique, for most of us, is all
it is.
African  art  exhibitions  museums  curators  mapping  sub-Saharan_Africa  Africa  provenance  Smithsonian  mystique  interpretative 
august 2011 by jerryking

Copy this bookmark:

to read