An exhibition at the Wing Luke Museum in Seattle that spurred a staff walkout in protest of its purported equation of antisemitism with anti-Zionism will be moved to as-of-yet undetermined new venue, the museum announced in a statement on Friday, June 28.

26 workers, or about half of the museum’s staff, walked out of the institution, which centers Asian Pacific American art history, in response to “Confronting Hate Together,” a show staged in collaboration with the Black Heritage Society of Washington State and the Washington State Jewish Historical Society. The show focused on the intersection of violence against local Black, Jewish, and Asian communities. Museum text described its intentions as “as a unified response and community call to action against the bias and bigotry that sow seeds of division and hate across communities.”

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Most of the staff’s ire was directed at a picture of wall texts that appeared in a KUOW profile of the exhibition published ahead of the show’s opening on May 22. That text opened with, “Today antisemitism is often disguised as anti-Zionism,” and later referred to a phrase graffitied in November onto the Herzl-Ner Tamid temple in Mercer Island, Washington: “Stop Killing”—however, the museum text misquoted it as “Stop the killing” and said it was graffitied “as if the Jews of Mercer Island could control the actions of the Israeli government.”

The text also read, “On university campuses, pro-Palestinian groups have voiced support for Hamas (which is classified as a terrorist organization by the U.S. government) and a Palestinian state stretching ‘from the river to the sea,’ a phrase defined by the erasure of Israel.”

In a letter sent to museum leadership on May 19, the workers demanded the museum to divest itself of language and partnerships that “attempt to frame Palestinian liberation and anti-Zionism as antisemitism,” and that the institution “acknowledge limited perspectives” within the exhibition, which the workers claimed had excluded Palestinians, as well as the larger Arab and Muslim world community. The staff walked out upon the opening of the show and did not return until May 29. The museum remained closed for most of June.

“While we acknowledge the damage recent events have caused, our goal is to move forward, share this essential and timely exhibit with our communities, and begin to heal together,” the June 28 museum statement said.

“We will relaunch Confronting Hate Together in solidarity. As always, we are unwaveringly committed to an exhibit that holds to its core message of confronting hate. We acknowledge the complexity of this deeply challenging work as we learn from each other. We ask for your continued grace and understanding as we navigate this process and express our deepest gratitude to our communities.”

Museum spokesperson Steve McLean, speaking to the South Seattle Emerald, said there continue to be conversations between staff and the exhibition partners about its iteration in the new venue. 

“We have spent the time since the closure of the exhibit, or rather the postponement, doing some revision work, a lot of learning, a lot of education, working with the staff who had challenges and concerns,” McLean said. “And really, really working with our partners to not only revise and make additions to the panels, but also explain and put some framing around what exactly happened and why it happened. We’re making a bigger exhibit out of it, essentially.”