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Statement on the Mass Shootings in Georgia and Colorado

We are committed to making the Chazen Museum of Art a place that welcomes and inspires. We believe that engaging with objects can tackle difficult, systemic issues, emotions and history. As a museum, our definition of excellence is grounded in diversity and that means we must actively decry acts of racism and violence.

The deplorable murders in Georgia remind us painfully of the frightening recent escalation of racial violence, particularly targeting Asian Americans. There is a long history of racism and violence against Asians in the U.S. and evidence that it has increased during the pandemic.

Now the mass shooting in Boulder this week brings home again, less than a week later, the legacy of gun violence that continues to shape and traumatize our country. This year has been the beginning of a reckoning with the violence endemic to racism. As part of our own work, this fall the Chazen Museum created adaptable curriculum modules, centered on objects in our permanent collection, on “Activism through Art” and “Resilience and Surviving Trauma” in connection with UW–Madison’s Go Big Read selection, Parkland. We hope you find the museum a place of inspiration and challenge, solace and conversation, and we invite all to seek those experiences within our galleries.

As part of the UW–Madison, we support the statement from Interim Chief Diversity Officer Cheryl Gittens and Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs Lori Reesor.

March 24, 2021