Suitcase Exhibit Finds a Home at The Museum of disABILITY History

With the generous support of the van Ameringen Foundation and the Nathan Cummings Foundation, a 1,500 square foot traveling version of the suitcase exhibit was created in 2005: "The Lives They Left Behind: Suitcases from a State Hospital Attic." Curated by Darby Penney and Peter Stastny for the Community Consortium, the exhibit was designed and produced by The Exhibition Alliance, which handled rental and scheduling. The goal of the exhibit is to bring the stories of the suitcase owners and a patient-centered view of the history of psychiatry to a wider audience.

For almost 10 years, the exhibit traveled the country from coast to coast, hosted by 30 venues in 11 different states, and was seen by thousands of people. As of April 2015, The Exhibition Alliance closed its doors, leaving the exhibit without a rental agent.

Fortunately, we found a permanent home for the exhibit at the Museum of disABILITY History in Buffalo, New York, the only museum in the country which focuses on disability history. The exhibit is thematically and visually compatible the Museum's existing permanent exhibits, and we are very pleased with this outcome. We encourage you to visit the Museum virtually at or in person at 3826 Main Street, Buffalo, NY 14226.