Tag Archives: New York City museums

Happening at New-York Historical Society: Holiday Express Toys and Trains, Last Chance for ‘Bill Graham and the Rock & Roll Revolution’

Last chance! Listen to the music Bill Graham promoted in his concert venues as you go through the tribute exhibit “Bill Graham and the Rock & Roll Revolution“ at the New-York Historical Society, on view through Jan. 3, 2021 © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

The fabulously popular seasonal Holiday Express: Toys and Trains from the Jerni Collection may be running through Feb.21, but the New-York Historical Society is issuing notice of a last chance to experience the remarkable Bill Graham and the Rock & Roll Revolution (through Jan. 3, 2021), and Women March (through Jan. 24, 2021), plus other events, exhibits, and online and virtual programs.

The New-York Historical Society is open to visitors with timed-entry tickets and safety protocols in place

Here’s what’s on view as well as programs available virtually, on demand, and what is coming up in 2021:

Holiday Express: Toys and Trains from the Jerni Collection

Now through February 21, 2021
A magical wonderland awaits visitors with the return of this holiday tradition. Featuring toy trains, figurines, and miniature models from the renowned Jerni Collection, the exhibition transports young and old alike to a bygone era. The display includes a variety of toy train stations dating from the turn of the 19th century to the WWII era, showcasing the evolving designs of American and European toymakers. Visitors are greeted by animations and fun facts about the toys on nearby screens, and kids will be delighted by a specially created bench inspired by a sleigh in New-York Historical’s collection.

EXHIBITIONS

Bill Graham and the Rock & Roll Revolution
LAST CHANCE: Now through January 3, 2021
The New-York Historical Society presents the rock & roll world of Bill Graham (1931–1991), one of the most influential concert promoters of all time who worked with the biggest names in rock music—including the Grateful Dead, Jimi Hendrix, Santana, and the Rolling Stones. Organized by the Skirball Cultural Center, this comprehensive retrospective of Graham’s life and career explores some of the 20th century’s momentous cultural transformations through the lens of rock & roll. Showcasing more than 300 objects—including rock memorabilia, photographs, and concert posters—the exhibition features a site-specific installation of “The Joshua Light Show,” the trailblazing liquid light show, and a special, immersive audio experience, providing a musical tour through the exhibition with songs by rock superstars Blondie, David Bowie, the Doors, Janis Joplin, and Neil Young, among others.

Women March
LAST CHANCE: Now through January 24, 2021
For as long as there has been a United States, women have organized to shape the nation’s politics and secure their rights as citizens. Their collective action has taken many forms, from abolitionist petitions to industry-wide garment strikes to massive marches for an Equal Rights Amendment. Women March commemorates the centennial of the 19th Amendment—which granted women the right to vote in 1920—as it explores the efforts of a wide range of women to expand American democracy in the centuries before and after the suffrage victory. On view in the Joyce B. Cowin Women’s History Gallery, this immersive exhibition features imagery and video footage of women’s collective action, drawing visitors into a visceral engagement with the struggles that have endured into the 21st century.

Colonists, Citizens, Constitutions: Creating the American Republic
Now through February 7, 2021
America has been singular among nations in fostering a vibrant culture of engagement with constitutional matters and the fundamental principles of government. Featuring 40 books and documents from collector and philanthropist Dorothy Tapper Goldman’s collection—including constitutions from the federal and state levels—Colonists, Citizens, Constitutions: Creating the American Republic depicts the story of America’s unique constitutionalism from the founding era through the turn of the 20th century. The exhibition, which sketches the often troubled history of the country as it expanded across the continent, serves as a timely reminder of our country’s democratic foundations and its relentless quest for improvement.

Dreaming Together: New-York Historical Society and Asia Society Museum
Now through July 25, 2021

As part of the Asia Society TriennialWe Do Not Dream Alone—a multi-venue festival of art, ideas, and innovation—the New-York Historical Society and Asia Society Museum opens their first ever collaborative exhibition, Dreaming Together. More than 35 interwoven works drawn from both art collections generate dialogue about the urban and natural environments, protest and rebellion, individuals and identities, borders and crossings. Highlights include the Canal Street diptych (1992) from Martin Wong’s Chinatown series, 98-foot hanging scrolls by Dinh Q. Lê featuring abstractions of the World Trade Center towers (2016), and a dystopic video narrative of war and destruction by Shiva Ahmadi (2014). The result is a powerful reflection on the possibilities unleashed when people, cultures, and institutions dream in tandem.

Meet the Presidents and the Oval Office
Ongoing

A special permanent gallery on New-York Historical’s fourth floor features a detailed re-creation of the White House Oval Office, where presidents have exercised their powers, duties, and responsibilities since 1909. Visitors to New-York Historical can explore the Oval Office and hear audio recordings of presidential musings. The Meet the Presidents Gallery traces, through artwork and objects, the evolution of the presidency and executive branch and how presidents have interpreted and fulfilled their leadership role. Highlights include the actual Bible used during George Washington’s inauguration in 1789 and a student scrapbook from 1962 chronicling JFK’s leadership during the Cuban Missile Crisis.

New-York Historical’s Permanent Collection Displays 
Ongoing
As the centerpiece of the fourth floor, the Gallery of Tiffany Lamps features 100 illuminated Tiffany lamps from the Museum’s spectacular collection—regarded as one of the world’s largest and most encyclopedic— displayed within a dramatically lit jewel-like space. In the Henry Luce III Center for the Study of American Culture, treasures from our vast permanent collection tell the story of New York and American history. Themed displays present a variety of topics—such as slavery, war, 9/11, and childhood. Highlights include George Washington’s camp cot from Valley Forge; the preparatory model for Alison Saar’s imposing statue Swing Low: Harriet Tubman Memorial; a Venetian blind retrieved from St. Paul’s Churchyard in the days after September 11, 2001; stained glass dating back to 1650 from the time of New Amsterdam; and a draft wheel used in the lottery that sparked the Draft Riots in Civil War-torn New York in July 1863, one of the worst urban riots in American history.

SPECIAL INSTALLATION

The Waldorf Astoria Lobby Clock
Ongoing
Meet us at the clock! The great Waldorf Astoria clock is a legendary part of New York City lore and a meeting spot for generations of New Yorkers. Originally made for the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago, it was crafted in London and features relief portraits of American presidents and Queen Victoria of England. For decades, the towering clock graced the Waldorf Astoria—both at its first location on Fifth Avenue and 34th Street and in the lobby of the hotel’s longtime address at Park Avenue and 50th Street. This time-keeping treasure recently underwent a meticulous restoration and is on view in the Smith Gallery during the hotel’s renovation.

DIGITAL PROGRAMS AND PRESENTATIONS

Bill Graham and the Rock & Roll Revolution Virtual Presentation
Live Online | Tuesday, January 5, 2021 | 4–5:15 pm ET | $10 ($5 for Members)

Dive into the life and times of Bill Graham, the legendary music impresario behind the biggest names in rock & roll—including the Grateful Dead, Jimi Hendrix, Santana, and the Rolling Stones. This interactive presentation on Zoom tells the thrilling story of how a child refugee from Nazi Germany became one of the most influential concert promoters of all time. Explore psychedelic posters, oral history audio clips, and rare backstage photographs with a Museum docent.

The Last Million: Europe’s Displaced Persons from World Warto Cold War with David Nasaw and Judith Shulevitz 
Live Online | Tuesday, January 5, 2021 | 6 pm ET | $20 (Members, $10)

The surrender of Germany to the Allied powers in May 1945 was only the beginning for the millions of people left displaced and homeless in Europe after the war. Exhaustive repatriation efforts settled some, but a million refugees still remained left behind in Germany. Join acclaimed historian David Nasaw live on Zoom as he illuminates the heartbreaking, and sometimes shocking, story of the Last Million as they moved forward into an unknowable future.

Nature and American Art Virtual Presentation
Live Online | Thursday, January 14, 2021 | 3–4 pm | $10 ($5 Members)
Experience the natural beauty of the United States through the eyes of artists in New-York Historical’s collection. Discover how an evolving understanding of science and the emergence of early conservation movements shaped the 19th-century work of naturalist John James Audubon and the landscape painters of the Hudson River School.

The Crooked Path to Abolition: Abraham Lincoln and the Antislavery Constitution with James Oakes and Manisha Sinha
Live Online | Thursday, January 14, 2021 | 6 pm ET | $20 (Members, $10)

The long and turning path to the abolition of American slavery has often been attributed to the ambiguities and inconsistencies of antislavery leaders, including Abraham Lincoln. Live on Zoom, scholars James Oakes and Manisha Sinha uncover Lincoln’s antislavery strategies beginning long before his presidency, ultimately revealing a striking consistency and commitment extending over many years, all centered on the Constitution.

Meet the Presidents: A Look at the American Presidency Virtual Presentation
Live Online | Tuesday, January 19, 2021 | 4–5:15 pm ET | $10 ($5 for Members)

Discover the evolution of the presidency and executive branch and the ways presidents have interpreted and fulfilled their leadership role with exhibition highlights from Meet the Presidents. Notable objects include the actual Bible used during George Washington’s inauguration in 1789 and a student scrapbook from 1962 chronicling John F. Kennedy’s decisions during the Cuban Missile Crisis.

She Came to Slay: The Life and Times of Harriet Tubman with Erica Armstrong Dunbar and Eric Foner 
Live Online | Tuesday, January 19, 2021 | 6 pm ET | $20 (Members, $10)

Harriet Tubman inspired generations of civil rights activists with her heroic work as a conductor on the Underground Railroad. However her extraordinary accomplishments encompass even more. Erica Armstrong Dunbar discusses Harriet Tubman’s full biography, including her advocacy for women’s suffrage, her service in the Union Army during the Civil War, and her experiences as an entrepreneur, nurse, mother, fundraiser, philanthropist, and wife.

The Economy and the President with James Grant and Byron R. Wien 
Live Online | Tuesday, January 26, 2021 | 6 pm ET | $20 (Members, $10)

The coronavirus pandemic has shaken economic foundations across the globe. Following the presidential inauguration, longtime financial observers examine the economic successes and actions of the past few years, explore how the economy influenced the 2020 election, and forecast how the Biden administration’s policies could impact the national economic climate.

Vanguard: How Black Women Broke Barriers, Won the Vote, and Insisted on Equality for All with Martha S. Jones and Eric Foner
Live Online | Thursday, January 28, 2021 | 6 pm ET | $20 (Members, $10)

For many, the suffrage crusade began in Seneca Falls in 1848 and ended with the ratification of the 19th Amendment in 1920. But this overwhelmingly white women’s movement did not win the vote for most Black women. Acclaimed historian Martha S. Jones, in conversation with Eric Foner, recounts how Black women defied both racism and sexism to fight for the ballot from the earliest days of the republic through the passage of the 1965 Voting Rights Act and beyond, and how they wielded political power to secure the equality and dignity of all persons.

PUBLIC PROGRAMS ON-DEMAND

The New-York Historical Society is presenting a rich library of program recordings available to stream on demand. Produced exclusively for New-York Historical, the offerings feature notable speakers. Programs include Julian Fellowes in conversation with Catherine Grace Katz, author of The Daughters of Yalta: The Churchills, Roosevelts, and Harrimans: A Story of Love and War; scholars Akhil Reed Amar and Cristina M. Rodríguez discussing presidential power and immigration law; and a conversation on the life and legacy of Ruth Bader Ginsburg

EDUCATION PROGRAMS FOR STUDENTS, TEACHERS, AND GREEN CARD HOLDERS

History @ Home: Online Learning for Students
Join New-York Historical educators online as they lead live, weekly, interactive U.S. history classes. Lessons are content-based, inquiry-driven, and thematically and developmentally appropriate for each grade served. Students study images, artifacts, and historical documents, and learn to think critically about the history of our nation. All lessons are free. All you need is internet access and a device with the ability to connect to a Zoom meeting. 

Professional Development Workshops for Teachers
Free, one-hour interactive professional workshops take place every Wednesday at 5 pm ET while on Thursdays at 6 pm ET conversations between teachers and a guest scholar are held in an informal setting. 

Citizenship Project: Free Online Citizenship Classes for Green Card Holders
The New-York Historical Society offers free online citizenship classes for green card holders preparing for the naturalization interview. The interactive online naturalization preparation course covers all questions from the USCIS Civics Test. Participants learn about American history and government using objects, paintings, and documents from New-York Historical’s collections through videoconferencing. Online citizenship classes are taught in English and are accessible to English Language Learners. We also offer an online Spanish citizenship class for people who qualify for the English language exemption. New classes begin in January.

ONLINE FAMILY PROGRAMS

The DiMenna Children’s History Museum presents a wide range of digital, interactive family programs for all ages. To learn more about story time and crafts for little ones, conversations with historical interpreters, our Reading into History Family Book Club, and more, visit the Family Programs Calendar. And when visiting the Museum, families can explore the displays with an array of digital family guides

Admission: Adults: $22; Seniors/Educators/Active Military: $17; Students: $13; Children (5–13): $6; Children (4 and under): Free. Pay-as-you-wish Fridays from 6 pm – 8 pm

New-York Historical Society, 170 Central Park West (at 77th Street), New York, NY 10024, www.nyhistory.org, 212-873-3400

See: Many Pathways to Mark Centennial of Women’s Suffrage

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‘Notorious RBG: The Life and Times of Ruth Bader Ginsburg’ Exhibit Coming to New-York Historical Society, Fall 2021

The New-York Historical Society will honor the late Ruth Bader Ginsburg (RBG)—the trailblazing Supreme Court justice and cultural icon—with a special exhibition, Notorious RBG: The Life and Times of Ruth Bader Ginsburg, on view October 1, 2021 – January 23, 2022 © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

NEW YORK, NY – September 25, 2020 – The New-York Historical Society will honor the late Ruth Bader Ginsburg (RBG)—the trailblazing Supreme Court justice and cultural icon—with a special exhibition next year. On view October 1, 2021 – January 23, 2022, Notorious RBG: The Life and Times of Ruth Bader Ginsburg is based on the popular Tumblr and bestselling book of the same name. A traveling exhibition organized by the Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles, the show takes an expansive and engaging look at the justice’s life and work, highlighting her ceaseless efforts to protect civil rights and foster equal opportunity for all Americans.

“We were deeply saddened by the recent passing of Ruth Bader Ginsburg, a native New Yorker whose impact on the lives of contemporary Americans has been extraordinary,” said Dr. Louise Mirrer, president and CEO of the New-York Historical Society. “Justice Ginsburg fought hard to achieve justice and equality for all, inspiring us with her courage and tenacity in upholding our fundamental American ideals. A special friend to New-York Historical, in 2018 she presided over a naturalization ceremony in our auditorium, one of many that we are honored to host annually. The exhibition we had planned as a celebration of Justice Ginsburg’s life will now be our memorial tribute to her achievements and legacy.”

Notorious RBG features archival photographs and documents, historical artifacts, contemporary art, media stations, and gallery interactives spanning RBG’s varied roles as student, wife to Martin “Marty” Ginsburg, mother, lawyer, judge, women’s rights pioneer, and internet phenomenon. Highlights include a robe and jabot from RBG’s Supreme Court wardrobe; the official portraits of RBG and Sandra Day O’Connor—the first two women to serve on the Supreme Court—on loan from the National Portrait Gallery; and listening stations where visitors can hear RBG’s delivery of oral arguments, majority opinions, and forceful dissents in landmark Supreme Court cases.

The exhibition also displays 3D re-imaginations of key places in RBG’s life—such as her childhood Brooklyn apartment; the kitchen in RBG and Marty’s home, with some of Marty’s favorite recipes and cooking utensils; and the Supreme Court bench and the desk in her chambers.

Personal materials range from home movies of RBG with Marty on their honeymoon and in the early years of their marriage to yearbooks from RBG’s academic life—from her Brooklyn high school to Harvard, Columbia, and Rutgers Universities—to a paper that she wrote as an eighth grader exploring the relationship between the Ten Commandments, the Magna Carta, the Bill of Rights, the Declaration of Independence, and the recently formed United Nations Charter.

New-York Historical will announce additional exhibition details and related programming next year.

After debuting at the Skirball Cultural Center in 2018, Notorious RBG: The Life and Times of Ruth Bader Ginsburg has toured the country and is currently on view at the Illinois Holocaust Museum & Education Center, Skokie, IL (February 9, 2020–January 31, 2021) and will travel to the Maltz Museum of Jewish Heritage in Cleveland (February 21–June 20, 2021). After its New York run, the exhibition will travel to the Holocaust Museum Houston in Houston (January 2022); and the Capital Jewish Museum in Washington, D.C. (summer/fall 2022).

The New-York Historical Society presentation of Notorious RBG: The Life and Times of Ruth Bader Ginsburg is sponsored by Northern Trust. Exhibitions at New-York Historical are made possible by Dr. Agnes Hsu-Tang and Oscar Tang, the Saunders Trust for American History, the Seymour Neuman Endowed Fund, the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, and the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. WNET is the media sponsor.

The Skirball Cultural Center is a place of meeting guided by the Jewish tradition of welcoming the stranger and inspired by the American democratic ideals of freedom and equality. We welcome people of all communities and generations to participate in cultural experiences that celebrate discovery and hope, foster human connections, and call upon us to help build a more just society. 

The New-York Historical Society, one of America’s preeminent cultural institutions, is dedicated to fostering research and presenting history and art exhibitions and public programs that reveal the dynamism of history and its influence on the world of today. Founded in 1804, New-York Historical has a mission to explore the richly layered history of New York City and State and the country, and to serve as a national forum for the discussion of issues surrounding the making and meaning of history. New-York Historical is also home to the Patricia D. Klingenstein Library, one of the oldest, most distinguished libraries in the nation—and one of only 20 in the United States qualified to be a member of the Independent Research Libraries Association—which contains more than ten million books, pamphlets, maps, newspapers, manuscripts, prints, photographs, and architectural drawings.

The New-York Historical Society is located at 170 Central Park West at Richard Gilder Way (77th Street), New York, NY 10024. Information: (212) 873-3400. Website: nyhistory.org. Follow the museum on social media at @nyhistory on FacebookTwitterInstagramYouTube and Tumblr.

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New-York Historical Society to Open Free Outdoor Exhibition, ‘Hope Wanted: NYC Under Quarantine’ Aug. 14

The New-York Historical Society plans to reopen starting August 14 with a special free outdoor exhibition, ‘Hope Wanted: New York City Under Quarantine.’

New York, NY – The New-York Historical Society, the city’s oldest museum, plans to reopen in stages starting August 14, 2020, pending approval from local and state officials. The Museum will first open a special free outdoor exhibition, Hope Wanted: New York City Under Quarantine, which documents the experiences of New Yorkers across the five boroughs during the height of the pandemic. Then on September 11, 2020, the Museum is planning to reopen indoors, with safety protocols in place for visitors and staff.

“We are eager to welcome visitors back to the New-York Historical Society,” said Dr. Louise Mirrer, president and CEO of the New-York Historical Society. “While so much has changed over the past several months, our mission of ‘Making History Matter’ remains vital, now more than ever before.”

Hope Wanted: New York City Under Quarantine

Curated by writer and humanitarian Kevin Powell and photographer Kay Hickman, Hope Wanted: New York City Under Quarantine features more than 50 photographs taken by Hickman along with 12 audio interviews with the photographs’ subjects conducted by Powell during the team’s intensive two-day odyssey across the city on April 8–9, 2020; the audio will be accessible to visitors through their cell phones. Hickman’s empathetic photographs of people and their neighborhoods in all five boroughs and Powell’s searching interviews of New Yorkers impacted by the crisis capture both tragedy and remarkable resilience at a moment in time during the pandemic. The exhibition text and audio will be offered in both English and Spanish.

Hope Wanted will take place outdoors in New-York Historical’s rear courtyard (located at West 76th Street between Central Park West and Columbus Avenue), providing an open-air environment for visitors to view the exhibition and contemplate the impact of COVID-19 on New York City. Admission is free; access will be limited and face coverings will be required for entry, with social distancing enforced through timed-entry tickets and on-site safety measures.

The exhibition also includes a quiet seating area, surrounded by plantings and conducive to reflection, where visitors can record their own experiences of the pandemic in an open-sided story booth. These oral histories will be archived by New-York Historical.

Kevin Powell is a poet, journalist, public speaker, civil and human rights activist, and the author of 14 books, including his new title, When We Free the World (Apple Books), about the present and future of America, which is exclusively excerpted in the New York Times (“A Letter From Father to Child”). Kay Hickman is a documentary photographer and visual artist. Her passion is highlighting the human experience as it relates to identity, human rights, and health issues. Her work has been featured in the New York TimesTimeVogueMs., VibeUtne, and MFON Women Photographers of the African Diaspora. Dr. Marilyn Kushner, curator and head, Department of Prints, Photographs, and Architectural Collections, is New-York Historical’s curatorial coordinator for the exhibition.

Major support for this exhibition is provided by the Ford Foundation. Exhibitions at New-York Historical are made possible by Dr. Agnes Hsu-Tang and Oscar Tang, the Saunders Trust for American History, the Seymour Neuman Endowed Fund, and the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. WNET is the media sponsor.

Museum Reopening

Details of the Museum’s indoor reopening protocols and visitor safety measures will be announced soon. Since the New-York Historical Society closed to the public on March 13 to help contain the spread of COVID-19, it has been actively collecting during these unprecedented times through its History Responds initiative, documenting the pandemic and the Black Lives Matter protests in New York City. For more details on what New-York Historical is currently collecting and how to donate objects, visit nyhistory.org/history-responds.

The New-York Historical Society, one of America’s preeminent cultural institutions, is dedicated to fostering research and presenting history and art exhibitions and public programs that reveal the dynamism of history and its influence on the world of today. Founded in 1804, New-York Historical has a mission to explore the richly layered history of New York City and State and the country, and to serve as a national forum for the discussion of issues surrounding the making and meaning of history. New-York Historical is also home to the Patricia D. Klingenstein Library, one of the oldest, most distinguished libraries in the nation—and one of only 20 in the United States qualified to be a member of the Independent Research Libraries Association—which contains more than three million books, pamphlets, maps, newspapers, manuscripts, prints, photographs, and architectural drawings.

The New-York Historical Society is located at 170 Central Park West at Richard Gilder Way (77th Street), New York, NY 10024. Information: (212) 873-3400. Website: nyhistory.org. Follow the Museum on social media at @nyhistory on FacebookTwitterInstagramYouTube, and Tumblr.

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New-York Historical Society Leaps into Election Year with Exhibitions Showcasing Pillars of American Democracy

Rembrandt Peale. George Washington (1732–1799), 1853. Oil on canvas. New-York Historical Society, Bequest of Caroline Phelps Stokes

Women activists with signs for registration, 1956. Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, Frances Albrier Collection. © Cox Studio

Choctaw Nation Constitution of 1838 / The Constitution and Laws of the Choctaw Nation Park Hill, Cherokee Nation: John Candy, 1840. Photo credit: Ardon Bar-Hama

Herman Hollerith’s Punched Card Tabulator. Scientific American, vol. 63., no. 9. New York, 1890. Courtesy of David M. Rubenstein

Free Admission to Civics Exhibitions for College Students Through 2020

NEW YORK, NY –
As election year 2020 begins, the New-York Historical Society launches a series of special exhibitions that address the cornerstones of citizenship and American democracy. Starting on Presidents’ Day Weekend, visitors to Meet the Presidents will discover how the role of the president has evolved since George Washington with a re-creation of the White House Oval Office and a new gallery devoted to the powers of the presidency. Opening on the eve of Women’s History Month, Women March marks the centennial of the 19th Amendment with an immersive celebration of 200 years of women’s political and social activism. Colonists, Citizens, Constitutions: Creating the American Republic explores the important roles state constitutions have played in the history of our country, while The People Count: The Census in the Making of America documents the critical role played by the U.S. Census in the 19th century—just in time for the 2020 Census.

To encourage first-time voters to learn about our nation’s history and civic as they get ready to vote in the presidential election, New-York Historical Society is offering free admission to these exhibitions to college students with ID through 2020, an initiative supported, in part, by The History Channel. This special program allows college students to access New-York Historical’s roster of upcoming exhibitions that explore the pillars of American democracy as they prepare to vote, most of them for the first time.

“The year 2020 is a momentous time for both the past and future of American politics, as the centennial of the 19th Amendment, which granted women the right to vote, coincides with both a presidential election and a census year,” said Dr. Louise Mirrer, president and CEO of New-York Historical. “This suite of complementary exhibitions showcases the ideas and infrastructure behind our American institutions that establish and protect our fundamental rights to make our voices heard and opinions count. We hope that all visitors will come away with a wider understanding of the important role each citizen plays in our democracy.” 

Meet the Presidents (February 14 – ongoing)
Opening on Presidents’ Day Weekend, a special permanent gallery on New-York Historical’s fourth floor features a detailed re-creation of the White House Oval Office, where presidents have exercised their powers, duties, and responsibilities since 1909. Visitors to New-York Historical can explore the Oval Office, hear audio recordings of presidential musings, and even sit behind a version of the President’s Resolute Desk for a photo op. 

Presidents can furnish the Oval Office to suit their own tastes, and this re-creation evokes the decor of President Ronald Reagan’s second term, widely considered a classic interpretation of Oval Office design. The Resolute Desk, which has been used by almost every president, was presented by Queen Victoria of England in friendship to President Rutherford B. Hayes in 1880. The original was made from timbers from the British Arctic explorer ship H.M.S. Resolute, which was trapped in the ice, recovered by an American whaling ship, and returned to England. Other elements reminiscent of the Reagan-era on view include a famous jar of jelly beans, an inspirational plaque reading “It can be done,” and artist Frederic Remington’s Bronco Buster bronze sculpture of a rugged cowboy fighting to stay on a rearing horse.

The Suzanne Peck and Brian Friedman Meet the Presidents Gallerytraces, through artwork and objects, the evolution of the presidency and executive branch and how presidents have interpreted and fulfilled their leadership role. Highlights include the actual Bible used during George Washington’s inauguration in 1789 and a student scrapbook from 1962 chronicling JFK’s leadership during the Cuban Missile Crisis. Meet the Presidents is curated by Marci Reaven, vice president of history exhibits, and Lily Wong, assistant curator.

Women March (February 28 – August 30)
For as long as there has been a United States, women have organized to shape the nation’s politics and secure their rights as citizens. Their collective action has taken many forms, from abolitionist petitions to industry-wide garment strikes to massive marches for an Equal Rights Amendment. Women March celebrates the centennial of the 19th Amendment—which granted women the right to vote in 1920—as it explores the efforts of a diverse array of women to expand American democracy in the centuries before and after the suffrage victory. On view in the Joyce B. Cowin Women’s History Gallery, Women March is curated by Valerie Paley, the director of the Center for Women’s History and New-York Historical senior vice president and chief historian, with the Center for Women’s History curatorial team. The immersive exhibition features imagery and video footage of women’s collective action over time, drawing visitors into a visceral engagement with the struggles that have endured into the 21st century. 

The exhibition begins with the many ways women asserted political influence long before they even demanded the vote. Objects and images demonstrate how they risked criticism for speaking against slavery, signed petitions against Indian Removal, raised millions to support the Civil War, and protested reduced wages and longer days. A riveting recreation of an 1866 speech by African American suffragist and activist Frances Harper demonstrates the powerful debates at women’s rights conventions. Absence of the vote hardly prevented women from running for political office: one engaging item on display is a campaign ribbon for Belva Lockwood, the first woman to argue before the Supreme Court, who won around 4,000 votes in her own presidential bid. 

Multiple perspectives on the vote, including African American and working-class activism, are explored, upending popular assumptions that suffragists were a homogenous group. The 19th Amendment is hailed as a crucial step forward, but recognized as an incomplete victory. One photograph shows an African American women’s voter group in Georgia circa 1920, formed despite wide disenfranchisement, and another shows women of the League of Women Voters who sought to make suffragists’ goals real with legislation that addressed issues such as public health and child welfare. A digital interactive monitor invites visitors to explore the nuances of voting laws concerning women across the entire United States.  

Offering an examination of women’s activism in the century after the Amendment, the exhibition concludes by showing how women engaged with issues such as safe workplaces, civil rights, reproductive justice, and freedom from violence. Photographs and video footage of women building warships, boycotting segregation, urging voters to register, and marching for the Equal Rights Amendment convey the urgency of their desire for full citizenship. The dynamism of women’s collective action continues to the present day with handmade signs from the 2017 Women’s Marches and footage of a variety of marches and speeches on topics ranging from reproductive justice to indigenous peoples’ rights to climate change. Visitors can also learn about many individuals who have been instrumental in women’s activism over the past 200 years in an interactive display compiled by New-York Historical’s Teen Leaders program. Meanwhile, young visitors can explore the exhibition with a special family guide. 

Colonists, Citizens, Constitutions (February 28 – May 31)
America has been singular among nations in fostering a vibrant culture of engagement with constitutional matters and the fundamental principles of government. Featuring more than 40 books and documents from the Dorothy Tapper Goldman Foundation’s collection, Colonists, Citizens, Constitutions: Creating the American Republic illuminates America’s continuing debates on the role and limits of government and the fundamental rights of all citizens. From the early days of the American Revolution, to the American Civil War, to the eve of World War I, the rare and early printings of state and federal constitutions trace defining moments in American history and are testaments to our nation’s continuing experiment in self-government and the relentless quest for improvement. 

Among the highlights on view is a rare example of the original Dunlap and Claypoole 1787 printing of the U.S. Constitution—one of few surviving copies. Manuscripts, such as the first known description of the Great Seal of America from 1782 and a certified 1802 handwritten copy of the 12th Amendment that altered the system for electing the president and vice president are also on view. The Choctaw Nation Constitution of 1838, written by members of the tribe forcibly relocated from Mississippi to Oklahoma, combines American constitutional forms with traditional practices in an effort to preserve self-government and prevent further violations of their fundamental rights. The Constitution of the Republic of Texas (1836) sanctioned slavery and led the United States to initially decline Texas’ requests for annexation; the inclusion of slavery in the Missouri Constitution of 1820 also led to a bitter fight in Congress to deny Missouri admission to the union. The progressive Louisiana Constitution of 1868 of the Civil War Reconstruction period prohibited segregation of schools by race. Kansas was the first of more than 30 states to prohibit alcohol with the Kansas State Prohibition Amendment of 1880, eventually leading to national Prohibition through the 18th Amendment in 1919. The Wyoming Constitution of 1889 declared that “male and female citizens” could exercise all rights equally, including the right “to vote and hold office”—three decades before federal ratification of the 19th Amendment. The bilingual New Mexico Constitution of 1910—Constitution of the State of New Mexico/Constitucion del Estado de Nuevo Mexico—guaranteed that all laws, including the constitution, would be published in both English and Spanish for at least 20 years. 

Colonists, Citizens, Constitutions: Creating the American Republic also includes a selection of songs from WNYC’s Radio Lab “27: The Most Perfect Album,” in which contemporary musicians were asked to interpret the 27 amendments of the U.S. Constitution’s Bill of Rights in their own distinctive style with original new music. Musicians include Flor de Toloache, Sons of an Illustrious Father, Nana Grizol, Dolly Parton, and Caroline Shaw. The full album was conceived by the podcast More Perfect, a production of WNYC Studios, and is available for free online.

This exhibition is the first public viewing of these selected historical documents together, and after its run at New-York Historical, it travels to the Museum of the American Revolution in Philadelphia (June 12 – July 5, 2020). Curated by James F. Hrdlicka of Arizona State University with Michael Ryan, New-York Historical vice president and Sue Ann Weinberg director of the Patricia D. Klingenstein Library, the exhibition is accompanied by a fully illustrated catalogue written by Dr. Hrdlicka, with a foreword by Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States Ruth Bader Ginsburg, and with contributions by Dorothy Tapper Goldman and Robert McD. Parker.

The People Count: The Census in the Making of America (March 13 – June 7)
What does it mean to be counted? As the 2020 Census kicks off, The People Count: The Census in the Making of America from the David M. Rubenstein Americana Collection provides an in-depth look at the origins and story of the U. S. Census from 1790 through the 1800s, using 30 books and manuscripts that reveal the critical role the Census played in the development of the country. America became the first country to count its inhabitants for reasons of governing, as it dictates the number of House of Representatives seats that each state gets. In the 19th century as the country grew, so did the stakes of the census process, which further drove our nation west—and to war with itself.

The 2020 census will be the 24th decennial count undertaken without fail for 230 years. Censuses before the Constitution were the charge of the Board of Trade, which sent questionnaires to every colonial governor. “The Present State of the British Colonies in America” on display transcribes the results from 1773 to 1775, just as the American Revolution began, describing the people and land that England controlled at the time. On March 1, 1790, the First Census Act passed. The first census took 18 months to finish and counted almost 4 million people. Thomas Jefferson, then secretary of state, improvised a 56-page report, signing and circulating it privately, a copy of which is on view. 

The People Count pays particular attention to the problem of the Three-Fifths Compromise, the census-related clause in the Constitution that regarded slaves equal to 60% of freepersons. Unable to vote, enslaved people unwittingly added to the political representation of slaveholders. Displayed in the exhibition is the 1860 census, which counted 3.95 million slaves, an eighth of all Americans, and uncovered that in 10 years the North had gained 41% more people while the South grew by only 27%. On view are printings of the Emancipation Proclamation and the Ninth Census—Volume I, The Statistics of the Population of the United States, the 1870 census, when there was no longer slaves to be counted for the first time in nine censuses.

In the wake of the Civil War as the population grew and expanded west, the 1880 census reports took eight years to finish. An 1890 copy of Scientific American illustrates how the counting was accomplished in less time with the Punched Card Tabulator system invented by Herman Hollerith, a former census employee from Buffalo, New York. Divided into four devices for perforating, reading, and sorting, workers completed 62.9 million returns of 30 questions in less than five years.

The People Count: The Census in the Making of America is curated by Mazy Boroujerdi, advisor to the David M. Rubenstein Americana Collection, and by Michael Ryan, New-York Historical vice president and Sue Ann Weinberg director of the Patricia D. Klingenstein Library. 

Programming


Historians and scholars engage in a slate of related conversations, lectures, and intimate salons throughout the winter and spring. Black women and the 19th Amendment (March 12), older women in American history (March 19), and the life of Harriet Tubman (April 14) are among the topics explored during Women March. Programs that focus on the spirit of the law and the separation of powers (April 30), foreign influence in the 2020 election (May 2), and the presidents vs. the press (May 21) illuminate the presidency and the importance of the Oval Office. Scholars discuss power, politics, and madness (February 22) and the enduring constitutional vision of the Warren Court (April 25), among other programs focused on civics.

Family programs that take place on select weekends throughout the exhibitions’ run bring history to life for young visitors. One of the highlights is International Women’s Day on Sunday, March 8, when families can make crafts and meet historical interpreters portraying famous and little known leaders of the women’s rights movement.

The New-York Historical Society, one of America’s preeminent cultural institutions, is dedicated to fostering research and presenting history and art exhibitions and public programs that reveal the dynamism of history and its influence on the world of today. Founded in 1804, New-York Historical has a mission to explore the richly layered history of New York City and State and the country, and to serve as a national forum for the discussion of issues surrounding the making and meaning of history. New-York Historical is also home to the Patricia D. Klingenstein Library, one of the oldest, most distinguished libraries in the nation—and one of only 20 in the United States qualified to be a member of the Independent Research Libraries Association—which contains more than three million books, pamphlets, maps, newspapers, manuscripts, prints, photographs, and architectural drawings.

The New-York Historical Society is located at 170 Central Park West at Richard Gilder Way (77th Street), New York, NY 10024. Information: (212) 873-3400. Website: nyhistory.org. Follow the museum on social media at @nyhistory on FacebookTwitterInstagramYouTube and Tumblr.

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Museum of Jewish Heritage – A Living Memorial to the Holocaust Extends Groundbreaking Auschwitz Exhibition in Response to High Demand

Artifacts and images from dozens of institutions and private collections from around the world are on view at the Museum of Jewish Heritage – A Living Memorial to the Holocaust’s groundbreaking exhibit, Auschwitz. Not long ago. Not far away, including Mauthausen Memorial, Mauthausen, Austria, where the crematorium is no longer open to the public. © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

– Auschwitz. Not long ago. Not far away. exhibition will remain on view at the NYC museum through August 30, 2020, an eight-month extension from its originally scheduled close date –

– Exhibition features more than 700 objects and 400 photographs on display in North America for the first time, including a shofar that was secretly blown at Auschwitz and a collection of 10 original artifacts from the Anne Frank House –

New York, NY – Due to an overwhelming response, the Museum of Jewish Heritage – A Living Memorial to the Holocaust today announced that Auschwitz. Not long ago. Not far away.the most comprehensive Holocaust exhibition about Auschwitz ever presented in North America, will be extended until August 30, 2020. Produced by the international exhibition firm Musealia and the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum in Poland, the groundbreaking exhibition is the largest ever on Auschwitz with more than 700 original objects and 400 photographs.

The extension responds to the record number of visitors the exhibition drew to the Museum since opening in May. To date, more than 106,000 people from across the country and globe have come to the Museum to see the exhibition, including more than 36,000 students to date and approximately 12,000 students scheduled to visit before the end of 2019.

“The number of adults and school visitors drawn to Auschwitz. Not long ago. Not far away. has been incredible. This exhibition greets its visitors with a clear warning to be vigilant – to not allow this history to repeat and to never presume that it won’t,” notes Bruce C. Ratner, Chairman of the Museum’s Board of Trustees. “In recent years and recent months even, we have seen a surge in antisemitic rhetoric, hate crimes, and a weaponized nationalism both here in the United States and abroad. We are extending this exhibition at our Museum because it offers clear, moral lessons that resonate powerfully today and from which visitors want to learn.”

“It has been a great honor to preside over the Museum as it presents this astounding exhibition and to witness it move so many of our visitors as deeply as it has moved me,” says Jack Kliger, the Museum’s President & CEO. “Most remarkable, this exhibition is dynamic. Already large in scope, it continues to acquire new artifacts over the course of its life, such as the shofar clandestinely used in Auschwitz that we unveiled last month ahead of Rosh Hashanah.”

“We have been profoundly overwhelmed by the phenomenal visitor response in New York – not only by the numbers themselves, but especially by the time visitors spend in the exhibition – on average two hours – and the care, attention and respect they show for this story. Deciding to visit this exhibition is a courageous step. It means confronting oneself with a traumatic, complex and challenging past. And more importantly, it helps us understand more critically our own present,” says Luis Ferreiro, Director of Musealia and the exhibition project.

“I don’t think that there is a more important exhibition presented in New York at the moment. This one about Auschwitz explores the essence of mankind, analyzes the limits of what is human, and asks important questions about our contemporary responsibility. I am glad people will be able to see it there longer,” says Dr. Piotr M. A. Cywiński, Director of the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum.

Auschwitz. Not long ago. Not far away. traces the development of Nazi ideology and tells the transformation of Auschwitz from an ordinary Polish town known as Oświęcim to the largest German Nazi concentration camp and the most significant site of the Holocaust —at which ca. 1 million Jews, and tens of thousands of others, were murdered. Victims included Polish political prisoners, Sinti and Roma, Soviet prisoners of war, Jehovah’s Witnesses, and those the Nazis deemed “homosexual,” “disabled,” “criminal,” “inferior,” or adversarial in countless other ways. The exhibition tells not only the story of their persecution and murder, but also the myriad ways ordinary people responded to the unfolding genocide, including inspiring stories of resistance, resilience, courage, and altruism. In addition, the exhibition contains artifacts that depict the world of the perpetrators—SS men who created and operated the largest of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camps.

With more than 700 objects and 400 photographs, mainly from the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum, the New York presentation of the exhibition allows visitors to experience artifacts from more than 20 international museums and institutions on view for the first time in North America, including hundreds of personal items—such as suitcases, eyeglasses, and shoes—that belonged to survivors and victims of Auschwitz. Other artifacts include: concrete posts that were part of the fence of the Auschwitz camp; part of an original barrack for prisoners from the Auschwitz III-Monowitz camp; a desk and other possessions of the first and the longest-serving Auschwitz commandant Rudolf Höss; a gas mask used by the SS; Picasso’s Lithograph of Prisoner; and an original German-made Model 2 freight train car of the type used for the deportation of Jews to the ghettos and extermination camps in occupied Poland. 

The exhibition also features 10 artifacts on loan from the Anne Frank House in Amsterdam, which include the spilled, dried beans Anne wrote about in her diary and that were later discovered lodged between the cracks of stairs in the home where she hid from the German Nazis. The beans have never been displayed anywhere before. Most recently, the Museum announced the exhibition’s incorporation of a shofar (a ram’s horn that is made into a special wind instrument used during Jewish High Holiday services) that was hidden and clandestinely blown in the Auschwitz. The shofar was newly added to the exhibition on the cusp of the High Holy days and temporarily transported to two New York City synagogues to be blown on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. 

The Museum of Jewish Heritage has incorporated into the exhibition nearly 100 rare artifacts from its collection that relay the experience of survivors and liberators who found refuge in the greater New York area. These artifacts include: Alfred Kantor’s sketchbook and portfolio that contain over 150 original paintings and drawings from Theresienstadt, Auschwitz, and Schwarzheide; the trumpet that musician Louis Bannet (acclaimed as “the Dutch Louis Armstrong”) credits for saving his life while he was imprisoned in Auschwitz; visas issued by Chiune Sugihara, a Japanese diplomat in Lithuania often referred to as “Japan’s Oskar Schindler”; prisoner registration forms and identification cards; personal correspondence; tickets for passage on the St. Louis; and a rescued Torah scroll from the Bornplatz Synagogue in Hamburg. 

Also on display from the Museum of Jewish Heritage collection is Heinrich Himmler’s SS helmet and his annotated copy of Hitler’s Mein Kampf, as well as an anti-Jewish proclamation issued in 1551 by Ferdinand I that was given to Hermann Göring by German security chief Reinhard Heydrich on the occasion of Göring’s birthday. The proclamation required Jews to identify themselves with a “yellow ring” on their clothes. Heydrich noted that, 400 years later, the Nazis were completing Ferdinand’s work. These artifacts stand as evidence of a chapter of history that must never be forgotten.

Alongside Auschwitz. Not long ago. Not far away., the Museum offers a series of talks, screenings, performances, and commemorative events that further explore Jewish history and life before, during, and after the Holocaust. The last week of October, artist and Holocaust survivor William Bernheim will discuss his history and artistic response, and author Marty Brounstein will present a program abouta Christian couple in the Netherlands who saved the lives of over two dozen Jews. November programming includes commemorative events for the 81stanniversary of Kristallnacht, including “Stories Survive: An Eyewitness Account of Kristallnacht” with Ruth Zimbler. In December, The Sorceress will be performed by the resident National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene. To learn more about these and other activities, visit the Museum’s Events page here: https://mjhnyc.org/current-events/

Following the New York presentation, the exhibition is intended to tour other cities around the world. Future destinations will be announced by Musealia and the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum.

Curated by an international team of experts led by historian Dr. Robert Jan van Pelt, Auschwitz. Not long ago. Not far away. first opened in New York City on May 8, 2019 after its successful run at Madrid’s Arte Canal Exhibition Centre, where it was extended two times, drew more than 600,000 visitors, and was one of the most visited exhibitions in Europe last year. The exhibition explores the dual identity of the camp as a physical location—the largest documented mass murder site in human history—and as a symbol of the borderless manifestation of hatred and human barbarity.

Museum of Jewish Heritage Board Vice Chairman George Klein visited the exhibition in Spain and recommended to his Board that they bring it to Lower Manhattan.The exhibition features artifacts and materials on loan from more than 20 institutions and private collections around the world. In addition to the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum and the Museum of Jewish Heritage – A Living Memorial to the Holocaust, participating institutions include Yad Vashem in Jerusalem, Anne Frank House in Amsterdam, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, Auschwitz Jewish Center in Oświęcim, the Memorial and Museum Sachsenhausen in Oranienburg, and the Wiener Library for the Study of the Holocaust and Genocide in London. 

Auschwitz. Not long ago. Not far awaywas conceived of by Musealia and the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum and curated by an international panel of experts, including world-renowned scholars Dr. Robert Jan van Pelt, Dr. Michael Berenbaum, and Paul Salmons, in an unprecedented collaboration with historians and curators at the Research Center at the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum, led by Dr. Piotr Setkiewicz.

“When we, the Musealia curatorial team set out to design the Auschwitz exhibition, we realized that we faced a difficult problem. In Auschwitz over a million people, mostly Jews, were murdered shortly after their arrival or suffered and died in unimaginable circumstances. How does one create an exhibition about such a dark chapter in human history that, in our understanding, is not long ago and happened in a place not far away? How does one make the public, that has so many opportunities to explore a great city like New York, decide that it would want to see such an exhibition? Our tools were straightforward: a narrative told through more than 700 original artifacts, 400 original images, 100 stories, made present by means of filmed testimonies and quotes – all revealing individual experiences of a history we must learn from,” says Dr. Robert Jan van Pelt, Chief Curator.

Auschwitz. Not long ago. Not far away. is presented in the symbolic, hexagonally-shaped core building at the Museum of Jewish Heritage. This 18,000-square-foot exhibition introduces artifacts and Holocaust survivor testimony through 20 thematic galleries. 

Auschwitz. Not long ago. Not far away. at the Museum of Jewish Heritage – A Living Memorial to the Holocaust is made possible with lead support by Bruce C. Ratner, George and Adele Klein Family Foundation, Ingeborg and Ira Leon Rennert, and Larry and Klara Silverstein & Family. The exhibition is presented in part with major support by The David Berg Foundation, Patti Askwith Kenner, The Oster Family Foundation, and The Bernard and Anne Spitzer Charitable Trust. The New York premiere is made possible in part by Simon & Stefany Bergson with additional support from The Knapp Family Foundation.

GENERAL INFORMATION

TICKETS

Entry is by timed ticket available at Auschwitz.nyc. Audio guide (available in 8 languages) is included with admission.

$25 Flexible Entry—entry any time on a specific day

$16 Adults

$12 Seniors and People with Disabilities

$10 Students and Veterans

$8 Museum Members

FREE for Holocaust survivors, active members of the military and first responders, and students and teachers through grade 12 in schools located in New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut (with valid school-issued ID). 

For group visits, contact the Museum at 646.437.4304 or groupvisits@mjhnyc.org. See Auschwitz.nyc for more information.

HOURS AS OF NOVEMBER 1, 2019:

Sunday, Monday, Tuesday & Thursday          10 AM to 6 PM            
Wednesday                                                     10 AM to 9 PM

Friday                                                              10 AM to 3 PM            

Last admission to Auschwitz. Not long ago. Not far awayis 2 hours before closing time. Last entrance to the rest of the Museum is 30 minutes prior to closing time.

The Museum of Jewish Heritage – A Living Memorial to the Holocaust is New York’s contribution to the global responsibility to never forget. The Museum is committed to the crucial mission of educating diverse visitors about Jewish life before, during, and after the Holocaust. The third largest Holocaust museum in the world and the second largest in North America, the Museum of Jewish Heritage anchors the southernmost tip of Manhattan, completing the cultural and educational landscape it shares with the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island.

Since 1997, the Museum of Jewish Heritage has welcomed more than 2.5 million visitors; it maintains a collection of more than 40,000 artifacts, photographs, documentary films, and survivor testimonies and contains classrooms, a 375-seat theater (Edmond J. Safra Hall), special exhibition galleries, a resource center for educators, and a memorial art installation, Garden of Stones, designed by internationally acclaimed sculptor Andy Goldsworthy. 

The Museum receives general operating support from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs and New York State Council on the Arts. 

The Museum is closed on Saturdays, Jewish holidays, and Thanksgiving. 

Museum of Jewish Heritage – A Living Memorial to the Holocaust, 36 Battery Place, New York City, 646-437-4202, mjhnyc.org.

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New-York Historical Society ‘Rebel Spirits’ Exhibit Marks 50th Anniversary of Deaths of Martin Luther King Jr. and Robert F. Kennedy

Statues in the lobby of the New-York Historical Society re-create the famous duel between Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr. The NY-HS was founded in 1804, the oldest museum in New York City © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

New York, NY –To commemorate the 50th anniversary of the assassinations of Martin Luther King Jr. and Robert F. Kennedy in 1968, the New-York Historical Society presents an exhibition of photographs and artifacts honoring these visionary leaders who irrevocably changed the United States. On view February 16 – May 20, 2018, Rebel Spirits: Robert F. Kennedy and Martin Luther King Jr. showcases approximately 60 photographs and 30 documents and artifacts that uncover the relationship between these historic figures.

Martin Luther King Jr. (January 15, 1929 – April 4, 1968) and Robert F. Kennedy (November 20, 1925 –June 6, 1968) were born worlds apart—culturally, geographically, racially, financially, and politically—but by the time they were killed within months of each another in 1968, their worlds had come together. As their respective concerns expanded beyond civil rights and organized crime, their ties deepened to encompass shared interests in supporting the poor and opposing the war in Vietnam. This unprecedented exhibition explores the overlapping paths of their lives through images taken by some of the most renowned photojournalists of the era, including Bob Adelman, Danny Lyon, Henri Dauman, Jacques Lowe, Spider Martin, Steve Schapiro, Lawrence Schiller, and Paul Schutzer, alongside original correspondence, publications, and ephemera.

“The year 1968 rocked the nation in many ways, but it would be difficult to point to anything that shocked and sickened Americans more that year than the senseless and tragic deaths of Robert Kennedy and Martin Luther King Jr.,” said Dr. Louise Mirrer, president and CEO of the New-York Historical Society. “Fifty years later, the legacies of Kennedy and King still reverberate. This timely exhibition underscores the two men’s lasting impact on our nation while drawing attention to the ways in which their lives intersected. ”

Exhibition highlights include images of King and his son looking at the charred remains of a cross the Ku Klux Klan burned outside his Atlanta home in 1960, King’s mug shot after being indicted for the 1956 Montgomery Bus Boycott, and Kennedy being swarmed by an adoring crowd during his 1968 presidential campaign. Also on view are posters reading “Honor King: End Racism!” and “I Am a Man” that were carried in a Memphis march led by widow Coretta Scott King and her children on April 8, 1968, as well as a black and white “Kennedy/King” button worn by a New Yorker in memory of the two slain leaders. An adjunct display showcases the bronze sculpture of Martin Luther King Jr.―one of five existing casts created by Harlem Renaissance artist Charles Alston (1907– 1997), on loan from the Community Church of New York.

Rebel Spirits is based in part on The Promise and the Dream, written by David Margolick and produced by Lawrence Schiller for National Geographic Publishers. The exhibition was curated by Lawrence Schiller, Cristian Panaite, and Marilyn Kushner. It was produced by Wiener Schiller Productions, Inc. in association with Susan Bloom International with support from Getty Images, The Jacques Lowe Estate, and Steve Schapiro.

Lead support for Rebel Spirits was provided by provided by Leah and Michael R. Weisberg. Exhibitions at the New-York Historical Society are made possible by Dr. Agnes Hsu-Tang and Oscar Tang, the Saunders Trust for American History, the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, and the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. WNET is a media sponsor.

Published by National Geographic and written by Vanity Fair contributing editor and New York Times writer David Margolick, The Promise and the Dream: The Interrupted Lives of Robert F. Kennedy and Martin Luther King Jr. features an introduction by historian Douglas Brinkley. The book will be available at the NYHistory Store.

Several public programs will provide further insights into the exhibition and its time period. On March 6, eminent legal experts survey the evolution of the U.S. Supreme Court’s interpretations of the 14th Amendment—in commemoration of its 150th anniversary—and civil rights throughout American history, highlighting landmark cases such as Brown v. Board of Education. On April 23, scholar Randall Kennedy discusses the Supreme Court and Martin Luther King Jr. On May 21, journalist Chris Matthews sits down to explore the rebel spirit of Robert Kennedy.

The New-York Historical Society, one of America’s preeminent cultural institutions, is dedicated to fostering research and presenting history and art exhibitions and public programs that reveal the dynamism of history and its influence on the world of today. Founded in 1804, New-York Historical has a mission to explore the richly layered history of New York City and State and the country, and to serve as a national forum for the discussion of issues surrounding the making and meaning of history.

Admission: Adults: $21; Teachers and Seniors: $16; Students: $13; Children (5–13): $6;  Children (4 and under): Free; Pay-as-you-wish Fridays from 6 pm – 8 pm.

New-York Historical Society, 170 Central Park West (at 77th Street), New York, NY 10024, www.nyhistory.org, (212) 873-3400.

 

 

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American Museum of Natural History Hosts ¡Cuba! Exhibit

The American Museum of Natural History in New York City is opening ¡Cuba! that will explore the extraordinary biodiversity across the Caribbean island’s remote forests, deep caves, expansive wetlands, and dazzling reefs through immersive exhibits that have been developed with colleagues at the Cuban National Museum of Natural History (Museo Nacional de Historia Natural de Cuba, MNHN) as part of a formal Memorandum of Understanding signed in Havana this summer. The bilingual exhibition will also highlight Cuba’s culture, its people, and its history.

¡Cuba! will include live animals and specimens as well as artifacts and lifelike models representing the island nation’s distinctive wildlife—many species of which are found only on the island—from a venomous mammal to the world’s smallest bird. Highlights include a re-creation of Zapata wetlands—home to the endangered Cuban crocodile—and live lizards, boas, and frogs. In addition to focusing on biodiversity, the exhibition will showcase Cuban culture and life—including art, music, spiritual traditions, celebrations, food, and farming.A long, open boulevard evoking the street life one might find in a Cuban city will invite visitors to stroll, sit, and discover Cuban culture through music, dance performances, and a variety of interactive experiences. Other highlights include a re-creation of a throne used for orisha worship, an Afro-Cuban spiritual tradition known as Santeria; a gallery showcasing contemporary Cuban art; and a room revealing the craft of cultivating one of Cuba’s most famous crops, tobacco.

As a leader in science and conservation, the American Museum of Natural History has long-standing research and capacity development collaborations with Cuban scientists at a number of institutions, including the MNHN, the University of Havana, the Cuban Botanical Society, and the National Enterprise for the Protection of Flora and Fauna.Museum scientists have led nearly 30 expeditions and field projects to Cuba over the last 120 years.

¡Cuba!is co-curated by Dr. Ana Luz Porzecanski, director of AMNH’s Center for Biodiversity and Conservation, and Dr. Chris Raxworthy, curator-in-charge in the AMNH Department of Herpetology.

¡Cuba!will be open to the public from Monday, November 21, 2016, to August 13, 2017. Museum Members will be able to preview the exhibition on Friday, November 18, Saturday, November 19, and Sunday, November 20.

Major funding for ¡Cuba! has been provided by the Lila Wallace-Reader’s Digest Endowment Fund. Generous support for ¡Cuba! has been provided by the Dalio Ocean Initiative. The exhibit is sponsored by JetBlue and has received support from The Ford Foundation.

For more information, visit amnh.org.

 

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