During the recent American Anthropological Association annual meetings in Washington, DC, I ran a “pop up people’s museum” entitled Protest Matters! The temporary installation of protest objects (or, “matter”) was open Nov. 30 – Dec. 2, at local community cafe, The Potter’s House.
The Installation offered a timely opportunity for AAA attendees to come together with local activists and community members to explore the dynamic relationships between art and activism, materiality and affect, and creativity and community in the context of social justice activism. In the spirit of a “people’s museum” the contents were dictated by visitors, who chose objects to lend or donate to the archive, and wrote labels that included personal reflections as well as typical date/ origin/ material descriptions of items.
I’m happy to report that the project will live on in the form of a Virtual Museum, and even a 360 video that is VR headset compatible, allowing people to “revisit” the space in the future. You can find out more about the project, and how to contribute your own “protest matter” on the Protest Matters! website.