Say the word “museum” and my mind instantly thinks of grand, international, and greatly respected institutions such as The Met in New York. I would venture to guess that most people have this same inclination. This New York Times article, “Mr. Showmanship’s Show is Closing” announcing the shuttering of the Liberace Museum in Las Vegas, serves as a reminder that museums cover all subject matters, including cultural phenomena. Also highlighted in this article is the fact that museums across the country, regardless of content, are struggling in the current economy and are constantly developing ways to continue and increase visitorship.
It’s interesting to think that something, in this case Liberace and all he represents, once deemed valuable enough to preserve in a museum can quickly become irrelevant. The museum staff has tried to reinvent Liberace’s relevance and place in today’s society since its original significance has waned and no longer sufficiently draws pubic interest.