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Read Statements from Major U.S. Museums About the George Floyd Protests

After the killing of George Floyd while in police custody generated protests across the United Sates, many major museums in the country issued statements in support of the Black Lives Matter movement. The statements have not been free of controversy—some have alleged that museums did not act fast enough to issue them, and others have claimed that institutions have not been direct enough while discussing Black Lives Matter. Below is a roundup of some museums’ statements.

Art Institute of Chicago: “The museum cannot divorce itself from the struggle. We stand in solidarity with the black community, and we recognize—and are committed to engaging in—the tremendous amount of work to be done to build true equity and fight systemic racism, in both our institution and our city.”

Brooklyn Museum, New York: “We stand against police brutality and institutional and structural racism.”

California African American Museum, Los Angeles: “Museums are institutions, but they are made up of people. We are here with you navigating our anger and collective heartbreak, tending to loved ones and our communities and showing up every day to do the work.”

Denver Art Museum, Colorado: “The Denver Art Museum shares in the outpouring of grief and anger at the senseless loss of Black American lives, including those of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, and Breonna Taylor.”

Detroit Institute of Art: “We stand in solidarity with the people of Detroit and those around the world appealing for an end to racism, inequality, brutality and fear. The Detroit Institute of Arts commits to serving as a place of inclusion, diversity & equity for everyone in our community and beyond.”

Getty Museum, Los Angeles: “We share the anger and anguish of everyone in Los Angeles and the nation over yet another life senselessly taken. The Getty community is grieving; our hearts are broken.

Guggenheim Museum, New York: “The Guggenheim was founded on a belief in the transformative power of art. For our community, staff, members, and visitors, we want you to know we are listening, we are grieving with you, and we support collective action in calling for social justice.”

Hammer Museum, Los Angeles: “We stand in solidarity with #BlackLivesMatter and protesters around the nation. We mourn the losses of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and so many others who have lost their lives to police violence.”

High Museum of Art, Atlanta: “For our city and nation, this moment is distinctly about the fact hat black lives matter. Because Atlanta is our city; it is the birthplace of the Civil Rights Movement; and because as your art museum we draw inspiration from the bravery, candor, and commitment of those who have built this community of progress with their actions…”

Leslie-Lohman Museum, New York: “We are heartbroken, we are angry, and we are forever an institution that is committed to anti-racism. Yet, in spite of the radical and beautiful histories of the Museum, we, like all other museums, are plagued by the very same inequities and blind spots that are being protested on the streets today.”

Los Angeles County Museum of Art: “We stand with our community in rejecting racism, in mourning, and in demanding justice for the deaths of countless African Americans who continue to be targeted by systematic violence. We recognize that museums cannot claim neutrality in addressing the horrific issues that have plagued our society for centuries.”

Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York: “As we mourn the murder of George Floyd, and hear the pain of so many who have suffered because of systemic racism, injustice, and violence, we turn first to our colleagues in The Met community to listen, learn, and move forward together. “

Museum of Fine Arts, Boston: “The last days in Minneapolis, in Boston, and across the United States have been devastating. The killing of George Floyd, and many others before him, is intolerable. It is unjust.”

Museum of Modern Art, New York:We grieve with the families of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, David McAtee and Tony McDade—and with so many others in America’s black communities—who have suffered appalling losses and live in fear because of racism, abuse, violence and injustice.”

National Gallery of Art statement from director Kaywin Feldman: “These are dark and difficult days for our nation. I mourn for George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, their families, and my former community in Minneapolis. A more just and equitable future is possible.”

Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City: “[The museum] joins in solidarity in the pain and outrage over the murder of George Floyd. The museum stands solidly behind Kansas City’s pursuit of social justice and champions human expression.”

Portland Art Museum: “We stand in solidarity with our community, staff, and partners demanding racial justice…We also recognize our own museum’s role in supporting systems of oppression and inequity over a 127-year history, and pledge to continue our commitment to listen…to learn…to be accountable to our shared humanity…”

Smithsonian Institution statement from Secretary Lonnie G. Bunch: “Not only have we been forced to grapple with the impact of a global pandemic, we have been forced to confront the reality that, despite gains made in the past fifty years, we are still a nation riven by inequality and racial division. The state of our democracy feels fragile and precarious.”

Studio Museum in Harlem, New York: “Since its founding, the Studio Museum has exhibited work by black artists committed to bearing witness to acts of protest. The act of protest is a loud cry for justice, one that demands to be heard and felt.”

Whitney Museum: “The Whitney stands in solidarity with our community—staff, artists, neighbors, supporters, and visitors—and with protestors nationwide in denouncing racism and police brutality.”

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