Museum of African American History
Detroit, MI

Bridge, Furniture, and Interactive Display and Wall Panel Systems, 1997

At the heart of this museum, an interactive exhibition takes visitors on a journey through history, tracing the experience of African-Americans, from their roots in Africa through their hard road to freedom in the United States, using wall panels, installations and multimedia. In the middle of the space, a bridge symbolizing the slave passage crosses through the recreation of a slave ship. Jaroff Design and Mison Concepts were proud to work with designer Ralph Appelbaum as engineering consultants and custom metal fabricators for the bridge that forms the room’s centerpiece and the emotional core of the exhibition. We used an open mesh grating for the floor and simple ornamental metal railings on either side that permitted museum-goers to see underneath their feet the terrible conditions of the modeled slave quarters,. We also designed the flexible, interactive, blackened steel panel system that allowed museum staff to alter the didactic materials over time.