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Image courtesy the National Nordic Museum.

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National Nordic Museum – VIRTUAL

Thursday, April 1, 2021
7:00 pm - 8:15 pm
$15 Museum Members, $20 non-members

This program takes place via Zoom. Space is limited; to register, click here.

Until it’s safe to travel together for our popular Art Travels day, overnight, national, and international trips, we’re thrilled to launch virtual trips for armchair travelers each first Thursday evening! This month, we travel to the National Nordic Museum in Seattle, WA.

Founded in 1979, the National Nordic Museum promotes and celebrates Nordic culture and ideas, and builds bridges between the US and the Nordic region. With its acclaimed Nordic-inspired architecture, compelling Seattle location, and growing visibility across multiple audiences, the museum delivers 150+ programs per year focused on various aspects of Nordic culture as well as language classes, literature, film, theater, arts and crafts, and music ranging from classical and folk to Nordic Post Punk. The museum also hosts conferences and symposia on a wide range of topics including technology, environmental science, climate change, culinary arts, and decorative arts. The new facility, opened in 2018, hosts a wide array of artifacts and visiting exhibitions. The core galleries cover 12,000+ years of Nordic culture and history, organized around key Nordic themes of openness, social justice, innovation, and connection to nature. The new museum has become a cultural icon and an extraordinary platform for celebrating and sharing Nordic culture with the broadest possible audience.

For this virtual visit Leslie Anne Anderson, the National Nordic Museum’s director of collections, exhibitions, and programs, introduces the museum’s history, building, and highlights from the collection. Then, Anderson takes us on a virtual tour of La Vaughn Belle: A History of Unruly Returns, on view at the museum now. In the mid-17th century, Denmark established a colonial presence in the Caribbean and participated in the transatlantic slave trade until the early 19th century. This exhibition brings to light truths of this history through the fragments of material culture it left behind and six large-scale paintings by contemporary artist La Vaughn Belle investigating the legacy of colonialism. Her series Chaney (We Live in the Fragments) refers to ceramic shards found in abundance in the soil of the island of Saint Croix. The unearthing of this patterned pottery evokes the past and its legacy. Belle paints enlargements of different Chaney patterns and, when pieced together as a series, the images become a visual metaphor for the diverse origins and identities of Caribbean people today. Belle notes that “as daughters and sons of the dispersion, we are but many fragments—Danish, British, Yoruba, Akwamu, Kalinago, Taino—we are pieces of patterns and peoples that we may no longer recognize or acknowledge.”

Art Travels

The Museum offers a variety of excursions designed to enhance experiences with art. Art Travels is very popular, and trips often sell out quickly! For more information about upcoming trips, email learn@ashevilleart.org, or to be included on our Art Travels mailing list, click here.

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