A hip-hop museum is coming to the Bronx with the help of $3.7 million from New York State, Variety reported.
As part of a statewide plan focused on community and economic development, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo issued a grant that will be instrumental in bringing a state-of-the-art museum to the genre’s birthplace. Plans for the Universal Hip Hop Museum have been in the works for several years and organizers are closer to bringing the vision for the institution to fruition. The museum—which is slated to open its doors in 2023—will intertwine technology and art to highlight the history and impact of hip-hop.
Bronx native Rocky Bucano will serve as the executive director of the museum and the star-studded board will include legends Kurtis Blow and Chuck D. The museum has a group of cultural ambassadors who have been instrumental in shaping the landscape of hip-hop. Ambassadors include LL Cool J, Rakim, Big Daddy Kane, Fab Five Freddy and Grandmaster Flash. Construction for the museum is slated to break ground this summer.
“We have been at this dream for about six years now,” Kurtis Blow said in a statement, according to the news outlet. “Our mission is to use technology of today to tell this story of the history of hip-hop. We’re talking avatars and holograms and virtual reality. And another thing is interaction with the kids.”
Until it opens its doors, there will be a series of pop-up experiences taking place to give those interested a taste of what the museum will be like. There is currently one at the Bronx Terminal Market that features an immersive AR exhibition. “We want to empower, inspire and engage the community,” Bucano told CNN. “Hip-hop has touched every aspect of modern society and it’s important for the community to know that it was created by people who looked just like them.”