Congo Museum Project (What Pegman Saw)

Hello readers, This week Pegman takes us to Kinshasa, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (thanks to a suggestion from James at Powered By Robots).

The challenge with What pegman Saw is to write up to 150 words inspired by the suggested location, which this week is in the Congo in and around Kinshasa.

 

Here is my photo choice:

My fiction:

Congo Museum Project (word count: 150)

Transporting artifacts from dusty storehouses, I logged miles on my Land Rover. Back in the States, Rover’s meant luxury. Leather seats and spacious interiors provided showy rides on city streets. However, using a Rover to haul heavy artifacts highlighted what the beast was made for – hard work!

“J’aime pas le Congo,” rang through my head. That’s what folks said when they abandoned Congo’s museum construction. Even VanBeurden, the director, complained it felt ostentatious: less about contents and more about showy museum shell. I stayed through the complaining. Not sure why. Meaning motivates and restoring cultural artifacts likely fueled me.

Today, I deliver more art as the Rover’s tires safely pound teeth-rattling dirt roads. I see again this beast is more than a luxurious SUV. Similarly, Congo’s museum will be more than a showy shell. Some argue a museum legitimizes a country – so shouldn’t the structure be functional and beautiful?

 

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To join in with Pegman writers or to read more – go HERE

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Author Notes:

Congo’s new art museum (here) inspired today’s fiction.

“In 2011, the Congolese government struck a deal with KOICA to fund the construction of a new national museum, as well as help to digitize its collections and train its staff on museum management. But like the old museum before it, the project has often seemed less about the museum’s contents and more about the performance of building it, says Dr. Van Beurden, the author of a book on the history of Congo’s national museum.”

Won-chul Kim is the architect working with Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) (info here) in the construction of this new national museum in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DR Congo). Why did he leave his success in Korea and go to Africa? He responded in this way: “Paul Polak, the social activist who sought to solve world poverty, said that 90% of the entire world works for the 10% of the wealthy. If so, shouldn’t someone work for the rest of the 90%?”

Also, last winter we drove with a friend to a local sporting event – he had a very upscale Land Rover. I remember thinking that sometimes we have a whole lot of vehicle for mere city driving – but hey, who I am to judge? Those SUVs are also safe, spacious and meet other needs….

Thanks for reading and hope your weekend winds down with enjoyment.

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20 thoughts on “Congo Museum Project (What Pegman Saw)

  1. This was great, Yvette. It’s funny how these vehicles are built for a reason but end up being more of a fashion or entitlement statement.
    Hope the museum turns out fantabulous.

    Like

  2. Dear Yvette,

    My husband thinks I should trade my Chevy Cruz in on an SUV. I’m not all that comfortable with a larger vehicle. I like compact cars since I’m a compact girl.
    That said, I enjoyed your story. I agree…a museum should be a place of beauty. Nicely done.

    Shalom,

    Rochelle

    Like

    1. Hi – well if you are used to small – it could be tough to change – and it sounds like your car fits you. oh and the friend of ours with the Land Rover mentioned – he is very tall and admits the SUV gives him interior room he cannot find elsewhere.
      Thx for the comment
      🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. What a wonderful idea, bringing such an amazing building to a country that’s seen so much trouble and conflict. Something for the nation to take pride in. Lovely writing

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Lynne – this is based on true current events – a South Korean man is helping build a museum in the Congo and they are gathering items from scattered areas – and folks complained of showy shell and value of it.
      Either way – I hope it works out for them

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Liked your ode to the Rover. 😊 An art museum is often as amazing as what’s housed inside. Look at the Guggenheim. But i do love the idea of having art where the 90% can enjoy it. Beauty and meaning should not be the province only of the rich!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. True that – access for all!
      And this is based on real current events and hopefully there will be plenty of open access and you are right about the building beauty
      Oh and I did not have a way to add it in – but folks who are into Rovers (I am not) well there “is” a difference between the LAND rover and the ranger rover- and many argue the Land Rover is better and some
      Models have had sales at almost 200,000 (dang)

      Liked by 1 person

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