Duran Duran Museum

Today finds me in Washington D.C.  I arrived here late Friday night or early Saturday morning, depending on how you look at.  Three of my colleagues and I hopped into a car a couple of days ago to drive all the way here to participate in the Women’s March.  This certainly was not my first protest and it was not the first time I was in D.C. with a such a large crowd as I was here for the Inauguration in 2013.  Yet, it was the first time I was in such a large crowd to protest, to stand up for the rights of all, to let the world know that we won’t go back from the progress that has been made.

While we should turn around and head back home, instead, we are taking today to take in a few famous sites.  After all, all of us are educators and D.C. has much to teach us that we could pass on to our students.  The goal is to get into either the Holocaust Museum or the African-American History Museum since those are topics that we address in class.  If not, of course, there is plenty more to see, including some of the famous memorials like Lincoln and Martin Luther King, Jr.  Yes, D.C. will provide us some education before we begin the long trek back to Wisconsin.

While history and fighting for rights are fresh on my mind, Duran is never too far away.  As I started typing this, I began to think of a real cool idea.  What about a Duran Duran museum?  We know that there occasional exhibits in places like the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame that features the band.  The British Music Experience has some Duran related displays and artifacts.  Yet, I would love, love, love one just on the band, permanently.  Would you?  As a historian with experience working in history museums, this would definitely be a dream job.

Following my daydream, fantasy, whatever you want to call it, I think I would organize the museum by eras.  I would start at the pre-fame, the Rum Runner days when they were bringing all the members in, finding a record deal, etc..  Then, of course, we would move on to the first album and Rio when fame finds them as so many fans do.  The height of Duran-mania would come next with Seven and the Ragged Tiger, the Sing Blue Silver Tour, etc.  You can see where I’m going with this.

Of course, the next step would be to decide what artifacts would be included.  For Duran, each exhibit would need to be multi-media with music and videos.  I would showcase album and single covers as well as the band’s fashion choices.  Newspaper and magazine articles could be found as well memorabilia from the era.  Tour information, including cities, venues and dates would be easily found  along with set lists and bootlegs.  Truthfully, I would be so excited to be able to search through all of the artifacts to create an exhibit that is visually pleasing as well as educational.

Beyond the permanent exhibits from the different eras, we could also have special ones.  Some examples could include showcasing a certain song or album, side projects, influences on and influencing others.  Maybe, the special exhibits would focus on specific members or other elements to the Duran package like fashion or photography or art or poetry.  We could also feature fans or fan made products.  I have limitless ideas.  You can tell that if I were to create such a place, I would need a LOT of space!

Museums are meant to educate the masses about a specific topic.  They are also created to shine a spotlight on something or someone that has made a huge impact on a city, state, country or world.  For me, Duran Duran meets that criteria.  To me, they have changed my life, for sure.  Yeah, obviously, I realize that there is not going to be such a museum, but wouldn’t it be SO cool?  I would love to visit or to work on it!  If you were to create such a place, what would you include and how would you design it?

-A

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