I have surely come to understand this concept during my internship with the Anacostia Community Museum (ACM). As a research intern, I have seen first hand the importance of older archival collections to serve as stepping-stones for building contemporary collections. The exhibition and research records of ACM’s 1994 show Black Mosaic: Community, Race, and Ethnicity Among Black Immigrants in Washington, D.C. is a collection that centers on perceptions of identity, construction of community, and the lived experiences of Black immigrants in the DC area. Decades later, Black Mosaic is providing insight for Bridging the Americas, an Anacostia exhibition in process that highlights historical and contemporary Panamanian experiences in the DC area. The new show, opening in 2014 to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Panama Canal, draws in part on the stories from Panamanian participants in Black Mosaic. While researching, I often felt like I was transported to another time period. Time warping provided me with the historical context I needed to find similar themes and make relevant connections.
|Participants carry the Panamanian flag during a Latino Festival in Washington, DC on July 28, 1991. Black Mosaic Research Project (S000044), Anacostia Community Museum Archives, Harold Dorwin photographer.|
|Panamanian Independence Day party, November 03, 2013. Susana Raab, Anacostia Community Museum photographer.|
Latino Studies Curatorial Intern, Winter 2014
Anacostia Community Museum