Boston art museum cancels ‘Kimono Wednesdays’ after protests

BOSTON (AP) — The Museum of Fine Arts Boston is cancelling “Kimono Wednesdays” after protesters decried the event as racist.

In a Tuesday statement, the museum apologized for offending some visitors with the event, where museum goers were encouraged to don the traditional Japanese garments and pose in front of Claude Monet’s “La Japonaise.”

The museum said it had hoped to create an “interactive experience,” helping museum goers appreciate the rich details, embroidery and fine materials of the garments. It said similar events took place when the painting, depicting a woman in a kimono, travelled throughout Japan for an exhibition.

But protesters have held signs at the Boston museum’s events, calling them “racist” and “imperialist.”

The museum says kimonos will now be on display Wednesday evenings for visitors to touch, not try on.

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