Do Our Arts Institutions Have A Race Problem?

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Visitors at the MFA's "Ansel Adams in Our Time" exhibit. (Robin Lubbock/WBUR)
Visitors at the MFA's "Ansel Adams in Our Time" exhibit. (Robin Lubbock/WBUR)

The Museum of Fine Arts has apologized to a group of students of color from Dorchester who say they were profiled and harassed when they visited the museum last week.

Museums have long struggled with diversity and inclusion, and the MFA is not immune — in 2015, it reported that nearly 80% of its visitors were white. The museum has been trying to change that statistic through outreach, programming and events, but as this incident shows, it's not always getting more people of color in the door that's the problem — sometimes, it's what happens when they get there.


Cristela Guerra, WBUR arts and culture reporter. She tweets @CristelaGuerra.

Amanda Figueroa, co-founder of Brown Art Ink, which provides consulting and professional development to arts organizations, and a Ph.D. candidate at Harvard. She tweets @domesticanx.

Devin Morris, director of student and family engagement at Community Charter School of Cambridge and co-creator of The Teacher's Lounge, an event series for educators of color.

This segment aired on May 23, 2019.


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Paris Alston Host, Consider This
Paris Alston was WBUR's host of the Consider This podcast and a former producer for Radio Boston.


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Jamie Bologna was senior producer and director of Radio Boston.


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Chris Citorik Senior Producer
Chris Citorik was a senior producer for Radio Boston.


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Cristela Guerra Reporter
Cristela Guerra is an arts and culture reporter for WBUR.



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