Video: President Obama Inaugurates the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture

© Darren Bradley
© Darren Bradley

“What we can see of this building, the towering glass, the artistry of the metalwork, is surely a sight to behold.”

These were the words spoken by President Barack Obama as he inaugurated the most recent addition to the National Mall in Washington D.C., the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, this past weekend. The opening ceremonies featured musical performances and celebrations, as well as a look at the museum’s place in American history.

“This national museum helps to tell a richer and fuller story of who we are,” said Obama. “It helps us better understand the lives, yes, of the president but also the slave, the industrialist but also the porter, the keeper of the status quo but also the activist seeking to overthrow that status quo.”

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Also speaking at the opening event were former President George W. Bush, Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr., Smithsonian Secretary David Skorton, Rep. John Lewis and Lonnie G. Bunch III, as well as prominent figures such as Oprah Winfrey and Will Smith.

Designed by David Adjaye as the leader of the Freelon Adjaye Bond/SmithGroup (FAB) team, the 400,000 square foot building is the first national museum dedicated to the history and culture of African Americans, and includes exhibition space for the display of more than 3,000 artifacts.

Check out the video above to see the Dedication Ceremony in its entirety, and watch the video below for a timelapse of the building’s construction.

News via Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture.

How will President Obama’s move to require overtime pay change architecture?

President Obama signing a bill, via wikimedia.org

President Obama signing a bill, via wikimedia.org

For decades, bosses [in certain professions] have groomed their assistants to be the next generation of big shots by working them long hours for low wages.

Call it the “Devil Wears Prada” economy, after the novel depicting life working for a fictionalized Anna Wintour, the longtime Vogue editor.

But now, with the Obama administration moving to require time-and-a-half overtime pay for most salaried employees making less than $47,476 a year, that business model is suddenly under assault.the New York Times

“The change presents more than an economic challenge for the companies that rely on the willingness of young, ambitious workers to trade pay and self-respect for a shot at a prestige job down the road.”

The article doesn’t explicitly reference architecture, but as Archinect’s past coverage on the state of internships in the field makes clear, it could. Many firms employ a business model that involves underpaying interns and other young workers – or not paying them at all.

Like many of the employers quoted in the article, some architects contend that this culture breeds better architects in the long run. Additionally, since some firms won’t be able to afford overtime hours, their interns will end up getting less “training time” (and fewer opportunities to impress the highers-up).

Thoughts?

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