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Brooklyn is one of the most uniquely diverse places on the planet, and the museum embraces that identity. Stepping into an architectural gem of Brooklyn history, I found art, artifacts, and identities I've recognized in other museums around the world. The difference here was the commitment to Brooklyn's impact on how to present this view of the world. Several exhibits featured pieces from cultures throughout history and from people groups around the world. I remember seeing a wonderful purple and grey Picasso a few feet from a 1500 year old Chinese hand mirror.
This really is an experience typical New York City tourists won't find on their own; a true "do as the locals do" kind of place with the same quality as anything in Manhattan. Brooklyn is full of those types of things. Lastly, with any major museum, do your best to avoid the cafe if possible. Go to Cheryl's Global Soul first, a few blocks away.
If spending time in Brooklyn is the perfect place to experience the true cultural diversity of New York, Brooklyn Museum is the perfect place to hear the collective stories of the area and beyond. We recently went there to see ‘Gravity and Grace’, featuring sculptural works by El Anatsui. Utilising materials such as wood, metal, wire and bottle caps to create towering sculptures, it was stellar example of the thoughtful and innovative curation of the exhibitions at this landmark museum.
The Fashion World of Jean Paul Gaultier: From the Sidewalk to the Catwalk, was exhibited recently at the Brooklyn Museum. Custom mannequins with interactive faces were a little creepy at first, I thought they were looking at me at times while talking, but this audiovisual projections idea was actually the highpoint in the entire JPG showcase.