Dearborn, MI, is the cultural hub of the nation's Arab-American community and home to the Arab American National Museum, which opened in May 2005. The new ethnic museum is the first of its kind to showcase the culture of one of the largest Middle-Eastern populations in the country.
Blannett's biggest challenge was how to accommodate the diverse variety of artifacts, art and papers that tell the Arab-American story, including an extensive collection of textiles, paper, jewelry, ethnographic materials, and everyday artifacts of life, ranging from ancient cuneiform tablets to Golden Globe statuettes.
"We were in a great position because we were starting the collection fresh," she explained. "However, I also had to create storage areas for artifacts that we didn't yet have and try to allocate space for what I thought we might be getting in the future."
Blannett chose a powered high-density mobile storage system by Spacesaver to maximize capacity of the small space and had it customized with hanging rods for clothing such as robes that have been passed down from one generation to the next, drawers for smaller items, and adjustable shelving for a diversity of artifacts collected from all 50 states and 22 different Arab countries worldwide. "The Spacesaver units eliminated the space between the aisles, essentially doubling the space we have available to us," Blannett said.
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