By Laman Ismayilova
Director of the Azerbaijan Carpet Museum, Chairman of ICOM National Committee Azerbaijan, Ph.D. in art criticism Shirin Melikova represented the country at the "Museum Innovations" conference in Warsaw, Poland on May 9-12.
Azerbaijan Carpet Museum, the treasury of national culture, with over 14,000 unique exhibits, was nominated to the most prestigious award in the museum world - European Museum of the Year Award (EMYA).
National Carpet Museum awarded the certificate "For Innovations in Public Relations in the Museum Area".
The presentation of the Azerbaijan Carpet Museum was noted as one of the best, bright and memorable presentations.
In her speech, Shirin Melikova stressed that the main activity of museums today is precisely work with the public, aimed at attracting of various communities to museums not only as visitors, but also as participants in museum life. And each museum solves this problem according to local conditions.
The event was co-organized by the POLIN Museum of the History of Polish Jews and the European Museum Forum (EMF), Polish Ministry of Culture and National Heritage, the National Institute for Museums and Public Collections, the National Institute of Museum Management and Protection of Collections and the Council of Europe.
The museums of Great Britain, Turkey, Sweden, the Netherlands, Russia, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Poland, Latvia, Estonia, Andorra, Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Ireland, Hungary, Greece and Finland were also nominated for the prize.
The forum was attended by about 40 museums - from very small, with a staff of two employees, to large, with a flow of visitors more than 3 million a year.
With their intriguing array of radiant patterns revealed in artfully gradated color palettes, carpets continue to astonish art lovers and critics. Rug making is an ancient art form that goes back many centuries, some say many thousands of years.
Carpets have been always a part of Azerbaijani culture. They occupy a preeminent place among all the examples of national craftsmanship.
National carpets are known at international level, saved and stored at the world museums and private collections. Thanks to the care of the country, on November 10, 2010, the Azerbaijani carpet art was included into the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of UNESCO.
Azerbaijan's Carpet Museum established in Baku in 1967, being the first carpet museum in the world is the very place that can familiarize all the interested with the unique examples of the national carpets.
The main purpose of the creation of the museum was to store, research, and demonstrate unique examples of the carpet weaving art, which are the Azerbaijan’s national heritage. The initiator of the museum was Latif Karimov – an outstanding scientist and carpet weaver, the founder of the science of Azerbaijan Carpet Weaving Art, artist and teacher, author of the fundamental work of national carpet.
A new carpet museum, designed in the form of a rolled carpet, opened in the Baku Seaside Park in 2014 and all carpets were transferred to this museum.
Today museum hosts many events, such as exhibitions, international symposiums, and conferences.
During its 50 years of existence, the museum has organized more than 30 exhibitions in different countries throughout the world. The Museum operates as the site for the comprehensive research of traditional carpet weaving art and its popularization within world culture.
The European Museum of the Year Award (EMYA) was founded in 1977, by the now legendary Kenneth Hudson and Richard Hoggart, under the auspices of the Council of Europe, with the aim of recognizing excellence in the European museum sector, and of encouraging innovative processes in a museum world, which still took the more traditional view of focusing on collections rather than on their use for the benefit of society.
Laman Ismayilova is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @Lam_Ismayilova
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