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Free as they want to be: Artists Committed to Memory

September 30, 2022 - March 6, 2023

National Underground Railroad Freedom Center

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Free as they want to be
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‘Free as they want to be’ will be at the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center.

Symbols of the past are shown in a new light as works from over 20 artists explore issues of unfreedom. ‘Free as they want to be’: Artists Committed to Memory opens September 30 at the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center. The exhibition will be open through March 6, 2023.

‘Free as they want to be’ considers the role photography and film have played in remembering the legacies of slavery. The exhibition examines the social lives of Black and white Americans within the context.

It presents an opportunity to reflect upon the past, to mark significant defining moments – both triumphs and tragedies. The moments that characterize people and their experiences in the present and propose future possibilities.

‘Free as they want to be’ is curated by Deborah Willis, Ph.D., and Cheryl Finley, Ph.D. Willis is the Professor and Chair of the Department of Photography & Imagine at the Tisch School of the Arts. Finely is the Associate Professor of Art History at Cornell University.

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Free as they want to be Admission

Admission to Free as they want to be is included with general admission. The exhibit is free for the community on Fifth Third Community Days – the fifth and third Sunday each month, plus MLK Day and Juneteenth. Reserve your tickets online or in person.

Adults: $15
Seniors (60+): $13
Children ages 3-12: $10.50
Children under 3: Free
Members: Free



The nearest parking garage is located below the museum in the Central Riverfront Parking Garage Limited, metered street parking is available adjacent to the museum. Use the Cincy EZPark app as appropriate.



The main museum entrance is on the first floor, facing the riverfront. Accessible restrooms are available. Elevators are available for visitors to access from each floor.


About the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center

The physical location of the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center in downtown Cincinnati is just a few steps from the banks of the Ohio River. The Ohio River was the natural barrier separating southern slave states from the northern free states.

Since opening in 2004, they have filled a substantial void in the nation’s cultural heritage. Rooted in the stories of the Underground Railroad, the museum illuminates the true meaning of inclusive freedom.


Photo provided by the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center


The Voice of Black Cincinnati is a media company designed to educate, recognize, and create opportunities for African Americans. Want to find local news, events, job posting, scholarships, and a database of local Black-owned businesses? Visit our homepage, explore other articles, subscribe to our newsletter, like our Facebook page, join our Facebook group, and text VOBC to 513-270-3880.

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September 30
March 6, 2023
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National Underground Railroad Freedom Center
50 East Freedom Way
Cincinnati,OH45202United States
+ Google Map
877 648 4838
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