Manistee Museum Adding New Danish Heritage Exhibit
A Chicago-based artist is adding a new exhibit to the Old Kirke Museum in Manistee.
The Kirke – meaning church in Danish – showcases the Danish heritage of the area. The latest exhibit, coming soon in February, is a contemporary piece telling the story of the original land and settlers.
“Usually the way that I work as an artist is I do a lot of research,” says Anni Holm, the artist. “[I’m] interested in the history and sort of like temporary culture; what forms this location, like what’s the history, what’s the history of this church, what’s the history of the people that made the church in just the area in general.”
Holm met locals with Danish roots for the exhibit, and even toured the area with Old Kirke historian Dr. Bill Anderson.
“This area used to be forest with big trees and a lot of people, especially from the Scandinavian countries; Denmark, Norway and Sweden,” says Holm. “[They] came over here and participated in the logging to completely deforest the area back before the 1900s I think up until 1905.”
The exhibit will include a forest of 100 artificial trees, filling the pews of the old church. It will also include a video presentation displayed in a wood cabin, a Danish flag made by U.S. Danish citizens, and an audio presentation of sounds from a Danish church.
“The the United States is made up of a lot of immigrants from many different places and it’s interesting to me, the history that everybody brings, and then how we take something typically the positive from our culture and we carry that with us,” says Holm. “I think that that’s just interesting as a person and the travel that we have in life and how that influences us, but it’s also about this coming together and how when we do go out somewhere where there’s nobody else, none of our family members are there- I came here by myself- sort of this draw to other people who have likeness.”
Holm is looking for artificial tree donations in the area for her exhibit. Donations will be accepted at West Shore Community College after January 11. She’s also looking for donations of green colored cloths.
” I really want people to I’ll just be able to come together and have an experience here whether it is that they are a part of the exhibit as having contributed to my recording they have contributed maybe to the flag or maybe they have contributed a tree or maybe they are just curious about this place,” says Holm.