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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

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