Black History Museum: Newark Museum A Special Gateway To Diverse Learning


THE DIRECTOR AND CEO OF THE NEWARK MUSEUM OF ART IS PART OF A RARE CLASS. SHE IS ONE OF ONLY A HANDFUL OF AFRICAN-AMERICANS LEADING A MAJOR ART MUSEUM. CBS2’S AUNDREA CLINE-THOMAS INTRODUCES US TO LINDA HARRISON. I FEEL VERY PEACEFUL. Reporter: STUDENTS LISTEN CLOSELY AS EDUCATORS AT THE NEWARK MUSEUM OF ART MADE THE PAINTINGS COME TO LIFE. IT’S THAT CURIOSITY, ESPECIALLY WITH THE MUSEUM’S YOUNGEST PATRONS THAT DIRECTOR AND CEO LINDA HARRISON IS TRYING TO FOSTER. I HOPE THAT KIDS WALK AWAY FROM THE NEWARK MUSEUM OF ART SEEING THEMSELVES REFLECTED NOT ONLY IN OUR ART, BUT ALSO IN OUR STAFF AND HOW WE COMMUNICATE WITH THEM. Reporter: HARRISON HAD A MUCH DIFFERENT EXPERIENCE AS A CHILD DURING HER FIRST VISIT TO A MUSEUM IN CHICAGO. SHE REMEMBERS DISTINCTLY FEELING LIKE SHE DIDN’T BELONG. I WAS JUST NOTICING THAT THERE WAS ONLY ONE TYPE OF PERSON THERE, AND THEY HAPPEN TO ALL BE WHITE. Reporter: WHICH IS WHY RUNNING A MUSEUM WAS AN UNLIKELY TRANSITION AFTER YEARS IN CORPORATE AMERICA. SHE CAME TO NEWARK IN 2018 FROM THE SAN FRANCISCO MUSEUM OF THE AFRICAN DIASPORA. THERE ARE ONLY FIVE, LITERALLY FIVE AFRICAN- AMERICANS RUNNING MAJOR MUSEUMS ACROSS THE COUNTRY. Reporter: THE NEWARK MUSEUM HAS THE 12th LARGEST ART COLLECTION IN THE COUNTRY. LINDA HARRISON IS CHARGED WITH MAKING SURE YOU KNOW HOW MUCH IT HAS TO OFFER. SURVEYS SHOWED MANY OF THE CITY WERE PASSING BY THE BUILDING ON WASHINGTON STREET, UNCLEAR ABOUT THE ARTIFACTS INSIDE THAT EXPAND FROM ANCIENT EGYPT, GREECE AND ROME TO MORE CONTEMPORARY ART. SO HARRISON EXPANDED HOURS TO ACCOMMODATE MORE PATRONS, A NAME CHANGE INDICATING IT’S AN ART MUSEUM, FOLLOWED BY MORE PROGRAMMING WITH A HISTORIC AND CULTURAL FOCUS THAT BETTER REFLECTS THE DIVERSE COMMUNITY. AN AN AFRICAN-AMERICAN WOMAN LEADING A 102-YEAR-OLD INSTITUTION HOPING TO CREATE SPACE FOR EVERYONE. IN NEWARK, AUNDREA CLINE- THOMAS, CBS2 NEWS. THE MUSEUM OF ART IS OPEN WEDNESDAYS FOR SCHOOL GROUP TOURS, AND THEN TO THE PUBLIC EVERY THURSDAY THROUGH SUNDAY. YOU CAN SEE ALL OF OUR BLACK

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