Arab American National Museum will reopen in February after being closed for two years

click to enlarge Outside the museum. - Courtesy of the Arab American National Museum
Courtesy of the Arab American National Museum
Outside the museum.

After nearly two years of being closed due to COVID-19, Dearborn’s Arab American National Museum is set to reopen on Feb. 2. Finally, some good news.

The museum will be open from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Wed, Feb. 2, with regular business hours to follow.

This means we finally get to see Yasmine Nasser Diaz's solo exhibit soft powers up close. Diaz was an artist in residence at the AANM in March 2020 just before it closed.

“She was setting up her installation and then we closed, so we’re really excited that people get to come in and see it now,” Lujine Nasralla, communication specialist for the AANM, tells Metro Times. “We have done a lot of virtual programming while the museum was closed that’s helped us to reach an international audience that we didn’t have before. But at the same time, I'm looking forward to having in-person programming again, meeting new people, and having them interact with our exhibits.”

Diaz is a mixed media artist from Chicago whose parents immigrated to the U.S. from southern Yemen. soft powers features fiber etchings of photos she collected from fellow Yemeni Americans that center around coming-of-age nostalgia. Her work touches on themes like code-switching and plural identities, which are all too familiar for children of immigrants.

soft powers will be up at the AANM until May. 30.

The museum is also reopening in time for a new installation called “al-Falak,” which features a massive sculpture by Yemeni-Bosnian-U.S. artist Alia Ali. The sculpture will take the form of a glass octopus with 72 digital screens displaying “a range of experimental videos” and will be unveiled in March. Ali is the museum’s current artist in residence.

“We decided February was the time to reopen in part because we knew Yasmine’s exhibition couldn’t stay with us forever but we wanted to align our opening with our current resident’s project too,” Nasralla says. “We’ve been able to have artists in for our residency, but it will be good to have a more steady stream of artists come in and have them connect with the community as well.”

The Arab American National Museum is located at 13624 Michigan Ave., Dearborn, and will be open 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Thursdays and Fridays, and 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturdays following the opening on Feb. 2. More information is available at

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