The Pratt Library's exhibit, The Art & Preservation of Protest, honors Black Lives Matter Memorial Fence Artifact Collection and consists of hundreds of reproductions of signs, as well as original artifacts, grouped in such themes as LGBTQIA+, Feminism, memorials for the deceased, and more.
In the aftermath of the murder of George Floyd by police, widespread protests outside the White House forced the installation of additional security fencing. For months, activists attached signs, banners, and other artifacts to protest the treatment of Black and Brown people by police, and to demand solutions to many societal issues including racism, LGBTQIA+ rights, women’s rights, and more. In January 2021, items were removed from the fence for historic preservation as the Black Lives Matter Memorial Fence Artifact Collection
The collection and its exhibition at the Central Library would not be possible without the partnership between the Enoch Pratt Free Library, the DC Public Library, the Library of Congress, and Howard University. Artifacts were collected by Nadine Seiler and Karen Irwin with assistance from Aliza Leventhal. Pratt Library staff digitized the artifacts, while DC Public Library provided the metadata. All told, the collection and exhibit are the result of heroic efforts spanning hundreds of hours of labor, and are an homage to and a continuation of the necessary and urgent resistance and storytelling of antiracist activists across the country.
The exhibit is currently on display in the Annex at the Central Library, and you can view all 1,600 artifacts here.
Monday, August 14
Central Library, Annex
400 Cathedral Street, Baltimore, MD 21201