Tag Archives: diaspora

Museum of African Art & Culture

e5ccf9_970728786cf5aeb8249a321770cd8c35.jpeg_srz_p_555_763_75_22_0.50_1.20_0Portland, Maine is home of one of the most culturally specific museums about African art and culture, today’s “Museum of the Day” is a relatively new addition to cultural diversity in Maine.

The Museum of African Culture was founded by Oscar Mokeme and Art Aleshire and opened on August 8, 1998 in Portland Maine. It is the only institution in northern New England devoted exclusively to sub-Saharan African arts and culture. There are over 1,500 pieces in the collection of the museum, ranging from large-scale, elaborately carved wooden masks to smaller scale figures, cast copper alloy (bronze) figures, textiles, utilitarian objects, ceramic, bone, ivory and composite objects.

The oldest mask in the collection dates back to 1600 AD. Many of the bronzes are 1,000 years old and the ivory flutes and clay vessels are up to 2,000 years old. These pieces are important as they preserve the religious and cultural legacy of Africa that is fast disappearing in a globalized world.

The permanent exhibit features an extensive display of African masks. In addition to the permanent gallery, the museum has a Heritage Gallery with rotating exhibits featuring themes that include art from all over Sub-saharan Africa. The contemporary gallery has rotating exhibits that feature art inspired by the African Diaspora, and is home of the Black Artist Forum.

I know I would really enjoy to visit and learn more about the museum and its collections from the founding director.

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Basque Museum and Cultural Center

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Boise, Idaho is home to the Basque Museum and Cultural Center, today’s “Museum of the Day”.

Boise, Idaho has long been a central location where Basque immigrants first congregated after coming to the United States from the Spanish Basque Region. As immigrants established their lives here, Basques became well-known for their hard work and perseverance. The Mission of the Basque Museum & Cultural Center is to preserve, promote, and perpetuate Basque history and culture.

The Basque Museum & Cultural Center provides a look into the Basque heritage through exhibits, collections, and tours. As a cultural center, it’s a gathering place for events and educational opportunities – in which people of all backgrounds can take part in Basque activities.

The Basque Museum and Cultural Center was established in 1985 as a small museum in the historic Cyrus Jacobs-Uberuaga House at 607 Grove Street. Located in scenic Boise, Idaho, the Basque Museum & Cultural Center provides a look into the heritage of the Basque communities of Idaho and surrounding areas. Through hard work and the support of many people, businesses, foundations, and Basque communities, the Museum began to interpret the rich and colorful history of the Basques, their origins, and their new life in America.

The 611 Grove Street property became the primary facility for the Museum’s operations in 1993. As artifact donations and exhibition development increased, so did the need for more space. Displays, classrooms, a library, a kitchen and a Museum Store became part of the renewed space. Over the years, thanks to many dedicated people, the Museum has grown tremendously in facilities and services and has become an Idaho cultural institution.

The mission of the Basque Museum and Cultural Center is to preserve, promote and perpetuate Basque history and culture. The only Basque language preschool outside of the Basque Country, has been established as part of this mission.

Museum collections include oral history archives, a library, a collection of records & tapes, manuscript materials, and many artifacts and photographs. It is the home of significant resources for anyone interested in Basque history and culture.

As support and participation increase, the Museum will be able to offer more educational programs, develop and enhance permanent exhibits, implement technological improvements, manage collections, and promote Basque social activities.

I’ve always been fascinated by the culture of the Basque region in Spain, this is a great way to see how their culture developed in the United States. I look forward to a visit when I finally get to Utah!

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New Orleans African American Museum

DSC_6147New Orleans, Louisiana is home to today’s “Museum of the Day” – a great little museum tucked away in one of the United States of America’s most historic and architecturally interesting cities, the New Orleans African American Museum (NOAAM).

Located in Tremé, the oldest surviving black community in the United States, NOAAM is dedicated to protecting, preserving, and promoting through education the history, art, and culture of African Americans in New Orleans and the African diaspora.

The Museum is housed in the beautiful Tremé Villa, considered by some to be one of the finest examples of a Creole villa in the city. Built in 1828-29, the home retains many of its original decorative details. There are five restored buildings to visit. Visitors enjoy both established and emerging artists’ work in sculpture, painting and other artistic expressions.

Located on the site of a former plantation, the beautifully landscaped grounds cover one city block. There are three main courtyards on the front, rear, and side which also features a lovely gazebo in the center of the yard.

I look forward to visiting on my next trip to New Orleans!

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