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|President's Message, November 2012
Juanita Moore, President & CEO
The past two months of September and October, normally our slowest time of the year, have been quite remarkable thanks to the Visions of Our 44th Presidentexhibition, which has attracted attention from near and far. Fifteen of the participating artists, many of whom traveled from across the country at their own expense, attended an opening reception and artists’ discussion about this fantastic endeavor, which is living up to its billing as, “An exhibition of historic importance.” We’re proud to host this groundbreaking artistic collaboration through August of 2013. But please don’t wait to see it - as we expect crowds to swell following the presidential election and into the holiday season.
This month will truly be something special, as we have three new exhibits opening. Inspiring Minds: African Americans inScience and Technology, our new, permanent and high-tech exhibition exploring the contributions, past and present, of African Americans to the STEM fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics, opens Saturday, November 10. The following week sees the openings of A Very PresentForce: Celebrating a Century of the Detroit Branch NAACP on November 14, and Pathways to Freedom in the Americas:Shared Experiences between Michigan and Mexico on November 15.
In combination with Movingto His Own Beat - Fela: The Man, The Movement, The Music, and the Museum’s central experience, And Still We Rise, November offers an unparalleled array of exhibits spanning art, activism, geography, history, music, science and technology. Now more than ever, there’s something for everyone at The Wright Museum!
The Love of Literacy Lives On
We are pleased to announce a substantial award of support by the Miami-based John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. Due in part to the success of July’s Jerry Pinkney Celebrity Children’s Book Fair, the Museum has received a $750,000 commitment by the Knight Foundation that will allow us to continue literacy programming on an annual basis. The award was part of a combined $19.25 million investment in Detroit arts and culture; the other recipient institutions were the Arab American National Museum, Detroit Institute of Arts, Detroit School of Arts, Detroit Symphony Orchestra, Michigan Opera Theater, and the Sphinx Organization. We thank the Knight Foundation for their support, on behalf of our partner institutions, and the thousands of children our literacy programming will reach in the years to come.
Inspiring Minds: African Americans in Science and Technology
Opening Saturday 11/10
Inspiring Minds: African Americans in Science and Technology is a comprehensive, high-tech and permanent exhibition highlighting trailblazers, contemporaries and careers in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. African Americans have contributed to the scientific and engineering output of the United States since the 17th century, and this history is brought to life through interactive computer kiosks, a touchscreen video wall, and hands-on activities and play areas teaching basic engineering concepts. Four disciplines of scientific advancement are explored: Physical Sciences, Earth Sciences, Life Sciences, and Technology & Engineering. Within these, Inspiring Minds introduces individuals from across the spectrum of fields, levels of renown, and from times past and present, with particular focuses on African American women in science, black aviators, black inventors, medical ethics, and key historical figures such as George Washington Carver.
Significant funding for this exhibition was provided by The Renaissance (MI) Chapter of The Links, Incorporated. Inspiring Minds: African Americans in Science and Technology is free with museum admission. Click here to learn more...
Liberation Film SeriesDouble Feature
Saturday 11/10 at 2 pm
The Liberation Film Series: 2012-2013 Season continues free double screening of The Black Unicorn: Dudley Randall and The Broadside Press and StarbyStar: Naomi Long Madgett, Poet & Publisher followed by the discussion, Translating Poetry into Film, with Dr. Melba Joyce Boyd, in the Museum's General Motors Theater. This monthly series offers the regional community a new opportunity to experience a season of culturally important, conscious, enlightening, and engaging films. Immediately following each film, a speaker-led interpretation and Q&A session will provide the audience with deeper insights. To encourage literacy, a bibliography, supplemental reading materials, and useful links for each film are accessible on the Museum’s website, and the speaker’s books and related texts available at the venue. Click here to learn more...
||Voices of the Civil War Episode 10
Wednesday 11/21 online at TheWright.org/voices
The Voices of the Civil War is a five-year film series dedicated to celebrating and commemorating the Civil War over the course of the sesquicentennial. Each month, new episodes cover pertinent topics that follow the monthly events and issues as they unfolded for African Americans during the Civil War. Within these episodes there are various primary sources – letters and diaries, newspaper reports, and more - to recount various experiences of blacks during this period. We encourage your feedback and commentary through our Voices of the Civil War blog, where you can view new and previous episodes at www.TheWright.org/voices.
||In The Footsteps of Mandela 12-Day South Africa Vacation & Safari
October 8 - 19, 2013
Join fellow patrons, staff members and supporters of The Wright Museum on this amazing journey through the vibrant Rainbow Nation. Discover Nelson Mandela's South Africa through a collection of unique excursions and soulful encounters. This exclusive itinerary comes complete with most meals, luxurious accommodations, numerous excursions, plus round trip air transportation from Detroit. Please click here to download the brochure. For information or to book your reservation call (800) 321-0040.
Visions of Our 44th President
Through August 4, 2013
This collective art exhibit was created to honor and celebrate the significance of the first African American President of the United States, Barack Obama. Forty-four busts was created from a model that served as a blank canvas, giving each of forty-four artists from across the country free reign to creatively interpret this milestone in American history. The Visions exhibit opens at The Wright Museum before becoming the Museum’s first national traveling exhibit, visiting prestigious museums, libraries, universities and galleries across the country. At the conclusion of the tour, the exhibit will become a part of The Wright Museum’s permanent collection. To learn more, including how you can help support this once-in-a-life-time undertaking, visit VisionsOfOur44thPresident.com.ssachusetts, and is sponsored locally by the General Motors Foundation. Click here to learn more...
Moving to His Own Beat - Fela: The Man, The Movement, The Music
Through March 17, 2013
Created in partnership with Music Hall Center for the Performing Arts, this exhibit examines the life of Nigerian superstar Fela Kuti in the realms of music, culture, and politics, and preludes the arrival of the off-Broadway smash musical, Fela!, in February, 2012. Fela's undying passion for African peoples, understanding of the power of art and politics, and unyielding struggle against the colonial forces in Nigeria during the 1950s and 1960s, solidified his legacy as a shimmering agent of change against the status quo. He spoke out against the ruling government, returned to African traditions that had been interrupted during Colonialism, and brilliantly used his music as a medium for social change. Always pushing the envelope, Fela infused traditional African highlife music with classical jazz and funk, which evolved into a unique sound that he called, “Afrobeat.” The powerful music and social commentary found throughout his vast catalogue of recordings is indicative of his desire to help end oppression among African peoples everywhere. Click here to learn more...
The Chris Webber Collection: Exceptional People During Extraordinary Times, 1755 - Present
Through November 6, 2012
Chris Webber, Detroit native, National Basketball Association All-Star player (retired) and NBA announcer, collects rare artifacts that illuminate the lives and legacies of African American greats such as Phillis Wheatley, the first African American author; Rosa Parks , mother of the modern civil rights movement; civil rights leader, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and many others. Viewers get a glimpse of their heritage and learn about a different facet of Chris Webber, basketball player, philanthropist, and collector of African American history. Click here to learn more...
A Very Present Force: Celebrating 100 Years of the Detroit Branch NAACP
Opening November 14, 2012
Since its formation in 1912 - only three years after the founding of the national association - the Detroit Branch NAACP has been on the front lines of civil rights activism and advocacy, both locally and throughout the nation. A Very Present Force celebrates this sustained and important century-long struggle for equal opportunity and social justice. Organized into three sections, A Very Present Force explores the Detroit Branch NAACP’s rich local history while situating it within the broader national and international struggle for civil rights. Click here to learn more...
Pathways to Freedom in the Americas: Shared Experiences between Michigan and Mexico
Opening November 16, 2012
Inspired by the meeting of two women who became fast friends - Patricia Ann Talley, an African American from the United States of America, and Candelaria Donají Méndez Tello, an Afro-Mexican from Mexico (the United Mexican States), this exhibit presents the symbiotic (beneficial) relationship that has existed between Americans and Mexicans but has seldom been told. Divided into three sections, the exhibition uses video, maps, photographs, art, and music to depict a different aspect of slavery in the Americas, the story of fugitives that escaped slavery in the United States on the Underground Railroad south to Mexico, African heritage as it continues to permeate Mexican culture - especially in the Costa Chica Region of Guerrero, the migration of Mexicans to Michigan and the culture as it has manifested in Southwest Detroit.
Click here to learn more...
Great American Artists - Part III: The Seeds
Through January 6, 2013
This yearlong exhibition features the works of a consortium of Detroit artists in a three-part series subtitled, "Roots, Branches, and Seeds." This cooperative provides the group a means of documenting and preserving each artist’s image and their careers. In this third installment, the works of Endia Beal, Sydney James and Mario Moore form the “Seeds” of the group. They have used inspiration derived from the exhibit's first two parts - The Roots and Branches - to create works that address the social issues of today.
Click here to learn more...
Voices of the Civil War Episode 9 "Port Royal Experiment"
8th Biennial Awards for Excellence Legacy Dinner Photo Gallery
Visions of Our 44th President Artists Reception Photo Gallery
Crain's Detroit Business, "Knight Foundation funds innovation by local cultural groups, launch of Detroit arts contest"
Dissident Voice, "Dear Mandela: From Durban to Detroit, the Struggle for Land and House"
Crain's Detroit Business, "Creative metro Detroiters wow judges at Grand Rapids art festival"
Members of the The Wright Museum enjoy benefits such as:
• Free admission to the museum
• Free guest pass(es)
• Invitations to Members' Only previews
• Free subscription to the quarterly membership newsletter, The Wright Times
• 10% discount in the museum store
• Special pricing on select museum events
• 20% off meals at Union Street Restaurant