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1994 Source Awards

Source: Bob Berg / Getty

Next January, there’s going to be an opportunity for the public to get a chance to take a look at the life of Tupac Shakur thanks to a new museum initiative.

In cooperation with the late rap icon’s estate, an immersive museum that will dig deep into Tupac’s music, his life and his legacy will make its debut in downtown Los Angeles. “Tupac Shakur. Wake Me When I’m Free” will be housed in a 2,000 square foot exhibition space dubbed The Canvas at the L.A. Live entertainment complex.

The exhibition itself will be full of contemporary art honoring the rapper, as well as artifacts from his life such as notebooks, home videos, and other items along with multisensory elements. The museum’s title comes from the title of a poem by Shakur on the 2000 compilation album The Rose That Grew From Concrete, Volume 1. The exhibition’s website promises that those who attend will enjoy a “thought-provoking experience” but also advises that only those over 14 years of age will be permitted due to parts of the museum having “strobe lighting effects, simulated gunfire, and sudden loud noises.”

In an interview with the New York Times, co-producer Aaron Saxe states that the entire museum experience is “a story about race in America using Tupac as a proxy,” also adding that another aim is to give more dimension to Tupac’s life while humanizing him “because he and a lot of these figures are mythical, larger than life.”

Other notable figures who worked with the rapper’s estate on the museum experience include Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Chief Curator Nwaka Onwusa and Project Art Collective Jeremy Hodges, who will serve as the creative director of the experience. The museum will open on January 21st, 2022, and will embark on a tour of North America and internationally after its six-month launch in L.A. Fans can sign up at wakemewhenimfree.com for more information.

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