PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- For Vashti DuBois, 4613 Newhall Street is a meaningful place, since she raised her family there.
However, after suffering a personal tragedy in 2012, she opened her home to the public. First, it became a piece of theater with a show called, "Eviction Proof Peep Show Home."
DuBois says the show was "about a house that makes itself a museum." And, she says it told a story that was "a celebration of ordinary Black women and girls."
Now, her former home has become a significant space for the whole community, as the home of The Colored Girls Museum.
DuBois says she founded the museum in 2015, "for the protection, praise, and grace of ordinary women and girls of the African diaspora." She also serves as its Executive Director.
There are many portraits of Black women and girls throughout the museum. She says seeing that visual of yourself represented is important.
DuBois is a pioneer since she says the museum is the first of its kind, both nationally and internationally.
"We live in a world that prioritizes anything that's celebrity," she said.
With the museum, DuBois says she explores what it means to be "an ordinary, colored girl," and celebrates that within its walls.
"Black women have historically done so much for so many for so long," she said.
Over the last eight years, the museum has hosted more than 100 artists, but many of the artifacts at the museum belong to her family.
DuBois says the museum does have a curatorial style, and asks artists to curate rooms as well.
The current exhibition is called Sit-A-Spell: An Invitation. An Invocation.
Upstairs on the third floor is the Afrofuturistic speakeasy.
"So, we want you to sit a spell," says DuBois.
Around the museum, there are chairs inviting visitors to sit, but there are also some seats where the invitation is not to sit.
"And those are invocation chairs," she said.
The museum covers three floors and has eight rooms, with each room named for a body part.
The room designated as the 'eyes' is the Barbara Neely reading room.
DuBois says she dubbed it that to honor Neely's work as an author since she was "the first Black woman to do a mystery series."
She says she feels grateful to give women of color a space designed just for them.
"Girlhood is a sacred space," said DuBois. "You should have a place where you can go and feel like you're the center of the universe."
The Colored Girls Museum will launch its first ever podcast next week on Wednesday, March 29, 2023, called The Girlfriend Kit: Ask A Colored Girl.
For more information:
Sit-A-Spell: An Invitation. An Invocation.
The Colored Girls Museum on Instagram
The Girlfriend Kit: Ask A Colored Girl Podcast
The Colored Girls Museum
4613 Newhall Street
Philadelphia, PA 19144