On 8 December Musea & Erfgoed Mechelen and Het Firmament, in collaboration with FARO, Flanders Arts Institute and Kaaitheater organize the international seminar 'Dance and the museum: Stretching the boundaries' in Mechelen (BE), within the framework of the exhibition Zot Geweld/Dwaze Maagd (running until 11 December).
During the Groot Onderhoud meeting in Antwerp, Minister of Culture Sven Gatz presented the Flemish Culture Prize for Tangible Cultural Heritage 2015 to the Red Star Line Museum. The prize consists of a sum of €10,000 and a work of art by Philip Aguirre.
How can cultural heritage organisations help to tackle poverty in a sustainable way? How can they develop more close connections with the goals set by the poverty policy? There’s no one-size-fits-all answer to these questions. But there are some concepts that have proven value in practice.
Day 7, the last day of the summerschool, Kristel De Vis researcher and teacher in the University of Antwerp, gave a lecture about the research technique ‘Benchmarking’. It is a technique that can be used for different purposes. It is an interesting tool when working in group and a need in an objective view.
Monday, day 6, began with a lecture of Jan Callier, teacher of the university of Antwerp. He explained the methodology of photography of museum objects. How best to make a setup with the right light sources, the use of a colour scale and the ABCD blocks. Also an introduction was given about the different research techniques as IR- and UV-photography. The methodology of damage drawings, and the use of colours were explained.
In the weekend, day 4 and 5 the participants had the opportunity to visit 4 museums. Saturday was in Antwerp, the MAS and Katoennatie. Chris Lauwers, curator of the Asia Collection explained the idea behind the building of the MAS and that it became the icon of Antwerp. That museums are the new Cathedrals and people travel far to come and visit them. The museum has a ‘boulevard’ and open storage room that everyone can enter free, what makes it a more public building.
Day 3 was focused on ‘Material science and research'. Olivier Schalm, researcher and senior lecturer in conservation studies in the University of Antwerp, started the day with a lecture about identification and examination of materials. With the naked eye already much can be investigated but it still has its limits. He gave an introduction about the different wavelengths, visible light and x-rays. And explained how XRF works and what can be investigated by a case study.
In the morning, Martijn De Ruijter, working at the National Museum of World cultures and teacher in collections management in the Reinwardt Academy, gave an introduction to preventive conservation of ethnographic objects in museums. He started with potential risks, the 10 agents of deterioration.
From 24 August through 30 August 2016, the Faculty of Design Sciences of the University of Antwerp, FARO, Etnocoll and the King Baudouin Foundation host the brand new summer school 'Ethnographic collections, preservation, research and conservation'.
For most museums around the world, caring for – and ensuring the accessibility of – collections in storage is a major challenge. Small museums are particularly vulnerable, because of their limited resources and access to expertise. On the other hand, small museums are resourceful, well connected, and powerful voices in their community. This makes them very influential and ideally positioned to have a positive impact on the wellbeing of collections and their sustainable use. After all, most museums in your country are small.