Native: A New Museum

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Summary

  • This glossy spread on the new National Museum of the American Indian building appears in an award-winning home entertainment and interior design magazine that also features authoritative articles on a range of subjects. Featuring photographs of some architectural details of the building and artifacts from the museum's collections, the article describes the design and content of the sixteenth Smithsonian Institution museum.
  • The author, a member of the Osage tribe of Oklahoma, opens by writing of the museum building's opening ceremonies on September 21, 2004, on the Mall in Washington, D.C. Smithsonian Secretary Lawrence Small and NMAI Director W. Richard West, Jr. led a roster of speakers addressing a crowd that included tribal representatives spanning the Americas from the Arctic region to southern Peru. These ceremonies kicked off a six-day First Americans Festival that included storytelling, music demonstrations, and a Native foods marketplace.
  • The new building is the final facility of the National Museum of the American Indian, which also includes the George Gustav Heye Center in New York City and the Cultural Resources Center in Suitland, MD. Native Americans worked as project designers and architects for the 250,000-square-foot museum, and special attention was given to blend the building into the Mall's setting while still expressing Native values and beliefs.
  • The museum building faces due east and is surrounded by landscapes indigenous to various Native regions of the Western Hemisphere. A significant feature inside the museum is a central rotunda that soars 120 feet up to a skylight. About 8,000 objects are on display in three exhibition areas: Our Universe: Traditional Knowledge Shapes Our World; Our Peoples: Giving Voice to Our Histories; Our Lives: Contemporary Life and Identities. Another gallery features 200 works by 20th Century Native artists.

Subject

  • Small, Lawrence M
  • West, W. Richard
  • National Museum of the American Indian (U.S.) Cultural Resources Center
  • National Museum of the American Indian (U.S.)
  • National Museum of the American Indian (U.S.) George Gustav Heye Center
  • Cultural Resources Center
  • National Collections
  • First Americans Festival (Washington, D.C.: 2004)

Category

Smithsonian History Bibliography

Notes

Article appears in the "Masterworks" section of the magazine.

Contained within

Veranda Vol. XVIII, No. 5 (Journal)

Contact information

Institutional History Division, Smithsonian Institution Archives, 600 Maryland Avenue, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20024-2520, SIHistory@si.edu

Date

September-October 2004

Topic

  • Architecture
  • Architects
  • Secretaries
  • New Museums
  • Museums
  • Museum architecture
  • Museum buildings
  • Design
  • Artifacts
  • Interior architecture
  • Museum openings
  • Historians
  • Exhibitions
  • Indians of North America
  • Museum directors
  • Indians of North America--Museums
  • Buildings
  • Museums--Collection management
  • Architectural design
  • Museum exhibits

Place

  • Mall, The (Washington, D.C.)
  • Washington (D.C.)

Physical description

Number of pages : 5; Page numbers : 72-80

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