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12 FEBRUARY 2013

Reanimating cultural heritage: digital repatriation, knowledge networks and civil society strengthening in post-conflict Sierra Leone

"The Reanimating Cultural Heritage project reintroduced these objects to both Sierra Leoneans and a wider audience, thereby creating a platform for future recovery of the Sierra Leone cultural heritage sector. The project, led by Dr Paul Basu, created an innovative digital heritage resource to provide digital access to the Sierra Leonean collections of the project's partner institutions (the British Museum, Brighton Museum and Art Gallery, Glasgow Museums, World Museum Liverpool, the British Library Sound Archive, and the Sierra Leone National Museum). The resulting resource provides high quality images and enhanced information for over 3,500 Sierra Leonean objects from these museum collections.

Taking seemingly 'lifeless' museum objects, gathering dust in little–visited stores or displays, the project 'reanimated' them digitally by showing them alongside contextualising video, images, sounds and other media, 'reanimating' a traditional mask, for example, through video footage of a masquerade dance performance. The majority of the videos were made by Sierra Leoneans themselves, following participatory videomaking workshops. This ensured that a wide range of Sierra Leonean voices could be heard, from school children to weavers to religious leaders. Through integrating social networking technologies into the resource, visitors are able to comment and engage in dialogue about the objects and associated cultural practices."

(Arts & Humanities Research Council, 04/09/2012)



2012AHRCArts and Humanities Research Council • Brighton Museum and Art Gallery • British Library Sound Archive • British Museum • comment and engage • cultural heritagecultural practicesdance performance • dialogue about objects • digital access • digital heritage • digital heritage resource • engage in dialogue • Glasgow Museums • mask • masquerade • museum collectionsmuseum objects • participatory videomaking workshops • Paul Basu • re-animating • reanimating • Reanimating Cultural Heritage • research project • Sierra Leone • Sierra Leone National Museum • social networking technologies • World Museum Liverpoo


Simon Perkins
08 JULY 2009

Internet predicted to transform museums' relationship with public

"Two titans of the British museum world, Sir Nicholas Serota and Neil MacGregor, last night sketched out their visions for the museum of the future.

Both said that the relationship between institutions and their audiences would be transformed by the internet. Museums, they said, would become more like multimedia organisations.

'The future has to be, without question, the museum as a publisher and broadcaster,' said MacGregor, director of the British Museum.

Serota, director of the Tate, said: 'The challenge is, to what extent do we remain authors, and in what sense do we become publishers providing a platform for international conversations?"
(Charlotte Higgins, Guardian, 8 July 2009)



Simon Perkins
21 JUNE 2009

Acropolis Museum Opens Featuring Parthenon Frieze Replicas

"Welcome to the new Acropolis Museum. 188 years since the declaration of the Greek Independence, 33 years since Constantinos Karamanlis took the far–sighted decision to built it in this particular site, and 27 years since the campaign of Melina Merkouri, a duty is fulfilled and a dream is realized:

A whole nation's duty to its own cultural heritage; the new Acropolis Museum. The paramount monument of Ancient Classical Times now has its own Museum – at last. In difficult times people need symbols to hold tight and stand straight. The Grand Opening of the new Acropolis Museum may be such a symbolic event. Where the Aesthetics of Logic, the Ethics of Freedom and the Rationality of Beauty, are all fused together and carved in stone for eternity. Acropolis hasn't stayed intact over the centuries. Yet it is still radiating its Beauty and its Truth.

This unique embodiment of ideas, ideals, moral standards and aesthetic values is needed now, more than ever. And we enjoy these, for the first time in a Modern Museum deserving to the historical Monument. Take a tour in it. Appreciate its atmosphere and its exhibits. Be inspired by its transcending message. It is Greek because it is Ecumenical. It is ours only to share it with the rest of the World. And please, remember: What you will discover is not just a part of our History. It is also a part of our soul, of who we are...

There are strong, sacred bonds, connecting us with every single item, from the humblest archaeological fragment to the most ornate figure. All of the artifacts are parts of our soul... Mostly the ones missing! With the anticipation that eventually – better sooner than later – they will be re–united in their birth place and in the integral form they were meant to be."
(Antonis C. Samaras, Greek Minister of Culture)



2009 • Acropolis • Acropolis Museum • appropriationarchaeologyartefactAthensBritish MuseumClassicalcultural heritageculture • Elgin Marbles • GreeceGreekmonumentmuseumOttoman Empireownership • Parthenon • Parthenon Frieze • Parthenon Marbles • protest • repatriation • replica


Simon Perkins

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