Saturday, June 4, 2016

In Brussels, Art Museum Brings Hope to Muslim Neighborhood of Molenbeek

By Doreen Carvajal
Maya Hayuk’s installation at the new Millennium Iconoclast Museum of Art, or MIMA. The museum opened in the Molenbeek neighborhood in Brussels on April 15, only a few weeks after terrorist attacks shook the city. The first exhibition at the museum was a collection of urban art. Capucine Granier-Deferre for The New York Times
BRUSSELS---After three years of fund-raising and renovations, the founders of a contemporary art museum housed in a converted brewery in the Molenbeek district here were eagerly anticipating their grand opening on March 23. But those plans were upended on March 22, when suicide bombers struck the Brussels airport and a subway station, killing 32 people and paralyzing a city.... Officials at the museum, the Millennium Iconoclast Museum of Art, or MIMA, canceled the opening. They agonized over whether art lovers would venture across the Charleroi canal into the heavily Muslim and immigrant neighborhood to view what it calls “culture 2.0” — art from subcultures such as tattooing, graffiti, surfing and skateboarding. They needn’t have worried. When MIMA opened on April 15, the lines snaked along the waterfront, with 4,000 people visiting that weekend. [link]