Museum Month: A trip to Ashe Cultural Arts Center and the ability to ‘make things happen’

NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) - In the heart of Central City you'll find a nondescript building. But there's a lot that happens at Ashe Cultural Arts Center, and the name says it all.

“Ashe” is West African and loosely translates to the "ability to make things happen.”

"We are not an art for art's sake place. We are a looking at art as an expression of life place," says Carol Bebelle with the Ashe Cultural Arts Center.

Ashe supports programs, activities and creative works emphasizing the contributions of people of African descent. The center welcomes more than 30,000 visitors a year.

The museum hosts more than 800 events in those 365 days, and during museum month there are three exhibitions you won't want to miss.

"We really welcome the opportunity to have people use this month as a time to be able to come and check us out," says Bebelle.

Breastfeeding: Strengthening the Heart of the Community tells local stories about women who are choosing to breastfeed their children and the conflict of doing so in today's society.

The End of the Rainbow exhibition focuses on the struggle for acceptance within the LGBT community, imagining a future where homophobia is not marginalizing people's lives.

Ashe's permanent collection showcases the Mardi Gras Indian tradition and their beautifully beaded costumes – yet another year-round option for visitors to enjoy.


"The cultural world, the creative world is one of the places where we can take in this challenge to be lifelong learners," says Bebelle.

August is Museum Month in New Orleans, and this means free admission to the 17 museums participating this summer. Museum supporters who are card carrying members of at least one of the museums on the list will get in for free with a guest during the month of August. The idea is to get more people involved in the local culture and art that is available in our city.

For a complete list of participating museums, click here.