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USA: Museum of African American History and Culture set to open in DC02:51

USA: Museum of African American History and Culture set to open in DC

United States, Washington DC
September 14, 2016 at 23:06 GMT -00:00 · Published

"But we also understood that there has been controversy surrounding him with the recent allegations of his conduct and because w e understood that was impacting how people were thinking about Bill Cosby, how they were understanding his career, it was really overshadowing a lot of his legacy, so we felt that was important to address that as well. So we added a statement to the exhibition that acknowledges and recognizes the current controversy."

The newest addition to the Smithsonian's museum family - the National Museum of African American History and Culture - opened its doors to press on the National Mall in Washington DC, Wednesday, ten days ahead of its official opening.

The 400,000 square foot (37,161 square metres) building, styled in the shape of an upside-down pyramid, offers a unique collection of artefacts representing areas of African-American culture, spread over nine floors, five above ground level and four below.

The museum includes 12 exhibitions, moving from the history of the transatlantic slave trade and the era of segregation, to modern day visual arts and music collections. With more than 3,000 artifacts on display, Rosa Parks' dress, Michael Jackson's fedora, Muhammad Ali's headgear, and Chuck Berry's Cadillac are just some of the items on show.

During his opening remarks, secretary of the Smithsonian Institution David J. Skorten stated that he hoped the museum would "help advance the public conversation" at the time of "social and political discord."

One of the museum's section that aims to demonstrate the cultural impact made by the African-Americans in theatre, film and television points to Bill Cosby, among other notable television personalities. His appearance in the exhibition comes as Cosby continues to be embroiled in a string of sexual assault allegations, which the museum has decided to mention in their display.

The museum's grand opening is scheduled on September 24, with a dedication ceremony reportedly to be led by US President Barack Obama.

USA: Museum of African American History and Culture set to open in DC02:51
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"But we also understood that there has been controversy surrounding him with the recent allegations of his conduct and because w e understood that was impacting how people were thinking about Bill Cosby, how they were understanding his career, it was really overshadowing a lot of his legacy, so we felt that was important to address that as well. So we added a statement to the exhibition that acknowledges and recognizes the current controversy."

The newest addition to the Smithsonian's museum family - the National Museum of African American History and Culture - opened its doors to press on the National Mall in Washington DC, Wednesday, ten days ahead of its official opening.

The 400,000 square foot (37,161 square metres) building, styled in the shape of an upside-down pyramid, offers a unique collection of artefacts representing areas of African-American culture, spread over nine floors, five above ground level and four below.

The museum includes 12 exhibitions, moving from the history of the transatlantic slave trade and the era of segregation, to modern day visual arts and music collections. With more than 3,000 artifacts on display, Rosa Parks' dress, Michael Jackson's fedora, Muhammad Ali's headgear, and Chuck Berry's Cadillac are just some of the items on show.

During his opening remarks, secretary of the Smithsonian Institution David J. Skorten stated that he hoped the museum would "help advance the public conversation" at the time of "social and political discord."

One of the museum's section that aims to demonstrate the cultural impact made by the African-Americans in theatre, film and television points to Bill Cosby, among other notable television personalities. His appearance in the exhibition comes as Cosby continues to be embroiled in a string of sexual assault allegations, which the museum has decided to mention in their display.

The museum's grand opening is scheduled on September 24, with a dedication ceremony reportedly to be led by US President Barack Obama.

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