By Cindy Hsu

YONKERS, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — A local art exhibit is number one on a list of the top 20 exhibitions to see in the United States.

Welcome to the Hudson River Museum in Yonkers and the exhibition called “African-American Art in the 20th Century.”

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The publication “Black Art in America” chose the exhibit as the top must-see museum exhibition focusing on African-American art in the country.

Museum director Masha Turchinsky was blown away.

“Quite simply, wow. We’re talking about a powerhouse cavalcade of names in the pantheon of American art,” she told CBS2’s Cindy Hsu.

There are 43 paintings and sculptures by 34 Black artists who came to prominence starting in the 1920s and the Harlem Renaissance, to the Civil Rights Movement in the ’60s and beyond.

Jamel Robinson is the museum’s teaching artist-in-residence.

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“These works are beautiful and they come from a time of pain,” he said. “Out of this pressure, we have these diamonds.”

Robinson was so moved, he created a piece called “Beauty from Ashes” in response to the work he saw in the exhibit.

“It’s a life-changing experience. You walk into the museum one way, you experience all these works, and you leave another way,” he said.

All the paintings and sculptures are from the Smithsonian American Art Museum’s permanent collection, and the showing in Yonkers is the only New York venue on a nationwide tour.

“It’s just a great moment for people to be able to come and see the Smithsonian’s collection, to know that they have the greatest collection and that a portion of it is here,” Robinson said.

He also says this is an exhibition everyone should see.

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Only five museums nationwide were chosen to show the exhibit, and it’ll be at the Hudson River Museum through Jan. 16.

Cindy Hsu