Museum’s 50th-Anniversary Celebration June 3 Will Honor the World-renowned Poet
The staff of the National Museum of African Art expresses heartfelt condolences on the passing of Maya Angelou, world-renowned poet, educator, historian, best-selling author, actress, playwright and civil-rights activist. Angelou served as the museum’s honorary chair of its national campaign.
“My friend, my sister, my teacher, a wonderful advocate for my museum has gone to Glory,” said Johnnetta Betsch Cole, the director of the museum. “As we mourn the physical loss of a beloved treasure, magnificent American and international force, let us find comfort in Dr. Maya Angelou’s own words”:
And when great souls die, after a period peace blooms, slowly and always irregularly. Spaces fill with a kind of soothing electric vibration. Our senses, restored, never to be the same, whisper to us. They existed. They existed. We can be. Be and be better. For they existed.
Cole engaged Angelou in a thought-provoking discussion in February 2013 as part of the museum s director’s discussion series and in April 2014 at Angelou’s portrait unveiling at the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery.