By Laman Ismayilova
Each year since 1977, the world community marks International Museum Day on May 18. Initiated by the International Council of Museums (ICOM) , the event aims at raising awareness among the public of the essential role played by museums in cultural life.
International Museum Day 2020 is taking place under the theme "Museums for Equality: Diversity and Inclusion" to celebrate the diversity of perspectives that make up the museum community, and champion tools for identifying and overcoming bias in what they display and the stories they tell.
The Day is a great occasion to enjoy museums. Let`s see how the country`s best museums and art hubs celebrate this holiday:
Azerbaijan National Art Museum
Founded in 1937, the National Art Museum thrills art connoisseurs with fascinating examples of decorative-applied arts, multiple paintings of Azerbaijani, Italian, Russian, French, German and Polish painters in various styles.
On International Museum Day 2020, the museum presents a virtual exhibition of stunning art works by partially sighted or visually impaired children. Young talents are students of Republican Special Boarding School No. 5 and the Rehabilitation Center. Their paintings were created during master classes conducted by professor of the Tbilisi Academy of Arts Georgi Guraspashvili as part of an International Seminar “Art without Borders”. The virtual exhibition is available on the museum`s social networks: Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
Azerbaijan National Carpet Museum
Famous for its extensive rug collections, Azerbaijan National Carpet Museum will host international online conference on the topic “Museums for Equality: Diversity and Inclusion”.
The first part of the conference will start at 2 pm Baku time with participation of Chair of the Network of European Museum Organizations (NEMO) David Vuillaume, director at “Entertainers Ltd” Barbara Lisicki (UK) and director, International Centre for Inclusive Cultural Leadership, Anant National University, Former Vice President, ICOM, Paris, Amareswar Galla.
The online conference will be moderated by the director of the Azerbaijan National Carpet Museum President of ICOM Azerbaijan National Committee, Shirin Melikova.
The second part of the online conference will start at 3 pm Baku time, bringing together the directors of the Azerbaijan National Carpet Museum, Azerbaijan National Art Museum, National History Museum, State Museum of Azerbaijan Musical Culture, Independence Museum of Azerbaijan, Jafar Jabbarly State Theater Museum, YARAT Contemporary Art Center, Old City Museum Center, Gobustan National Historic and Artistic Reserve, House Museums of Sattar Bahlulzade, Tahir Salahov, Jafar Jabbarly, maestro Niyazi and others.
Azerbaijan State Museum of Musical Culture
Azerbaijan State Museum of Musical Culture presents its collections in three languages (Azerbaijani, English and Russian) to a wide audience under the headings "Listen to what we have" and "Visual Arts in the Azerbaijan State Museum of Musical Culture".
The Old City Museum Center
The Old City Museum Center (Icherisheher) has prepared a video titled "Promoting Inclusive Education through Traditional Arts" about the first program of inclusive professional education for art and creative expression in the field of culture.
The project is implemented by the Old Museum Center in partnership with European Union and the United Nations Development Program.
In addition, the Old City Museum Center and National Museum of Georgia will hold an international Zoom conference titled "Ancient museum work in the most modern times" dedicated to the International Museum Day (May 18).
The conference will provide insight into international experience of historically and geographically close neighbors. The round table will also discuss the prospects of cooperation between Icherisheher Museum Center and National Museum of Georgia.
This year is marked with the 20th anniversary of Icherisheher's inclusion (together with the Shirvanshahs' Palace Complex and Maiden's Tower) in the UNESCO's World Heritage List.
In this regard, the Old City Museum Center presents the Maiden Tower - architectural monument through the "World Heritage 3D Scanning" program.
This virtual tour is for the first time ever presented with information desks in two languages on all floors, a visualization of panoramic view of the city from the top of the tower and a link for virtual tour of embed code that can be placed on the website.
The project is implemented in collaboration with Germany based company EKМ Global Consulting GmbH. (www.ekmgc.de) and startuper on cultural heritage Sabina Zulalova (sabinazulalova.com).
YARAT Contemporary Art Space
Supported by Baku’s Main Cultural Department, YARAT Contemporary Art Space invites you to enjoy its urban multimedia project.
During the event, exclusive collection of artworks will be presented to the public and viewers. The project provides insight into museum collections and exhibition projects of different historical periods and dedicated to various topics.
Art exhibits will be represented by Azerbaijan National Carpet Museum, Museum of Azerbaijani Painting of the XX-XXI Centuries, Hungarian National Museum, Daugavpils Mark Rothko Art Centre (Latvia), Fashion Museum (Latvia), YARAT Contemporary Art Space and etc.
Thanks to the latest modern technology it is now possible to cover more audience. Artworks from the collections and exhibition projects from a number of museums will be presented to residents of quarantined cities all over the world, while demonstrating video projections of their living environment. Viewers will be able to become acquainted with museum exhibits while observing the show from the windows and balconies of their apartments, broaden their outlook and reflect on artistic creativity, without leaving their homes #evdeqal (#stayhome).
The partners of project include PLATFORM Art, Yasamal district executive power, The Embassy of Hungary, The Embassy of Latvia, Goethe-Zentrum Baku and Azerbaijan National Carpet Museum.
Events of Night of Museums multimedia project will be highlighted on YARAT`s digital platform.
Azerbaijan National Museum of History
On International Museum Day, Azerbaijan National Museum of History has prepared a virtual project "One Touch - A Thousand Values" aimed at promoting the museum.
As part of the project, the head of the museum’s ethnographic science foundation, Ph.D. in art criticism Sevinj Nasirova will take part in "Dikdaban" show, aired on İctimai TV (Public TV). The museum expert will cover such topics as protection of cultural heritage and upcoming joint activities with other museums.
Gobustan National Historical and Art Reserve
Gobustan National Historical and Art Reserve has announced a campaign "Be depicted on Gobustan rocks!". Those who wish to join the action can share their photos taken in Gobustan in the reserve's Facebook and Instagram pages. Moreover, a meeting with the ceramics artist Mir Teymur Mammadov will be broadcast today on Facebook.
Azerbaijan Independence Museum
Azerbaijan Independence Museum will conduct an online tour "Equality" for vulnerable groups of society on May 18 at 12.00 on Zoom platform.
The main goal of the museum is to highlight national independence movement of Azerbaijan at different stages of historical development. The museum stores rare documents, numismatic collections, works of art and other exhibits.
Jafar Jabbarly Theater Museum
Jafar Jabbarly Theater Museum will surprise the viewers with the programme "The World belongs to all of us", including a virtual exhibition of paintings by children with autism spectrum disorders from a group at the "Birge ve Saglam" Public Association and a live broadcast of "Blue Bird" play on social networks.
House-Museum of Jafar Jabbarly
The Jafar Jabbarly House-Museum will showcase "Morning star" photo exhibition, featuring unique historical exhibits stored in the museum, as well as photographs reflecting successful projects and events implemented by the museum over the past years.
Khachmaz and Masalli Historical and Local Lore Museums
Khachmaz Historical and Local Lore Museum holds an online contest of paintings "The Mysterious and Magical World" among schoolchildren under the motto "Museums for Equality: Diversity and Inclusion" and "My Exhibit". Students send their drawings to the competition, the theme of which is their favorite museums or exhibits, as well as their photos. The contest winners will be awarded with diplomas and various gifts.
Furthermore, Masalli Museum of History and Local Lore will hold a virtual presentation "The Past and Present of Our Folklore" by the Khalai Folk Music and Dance Ensemble on Facebook.
Laman Ismayilova is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @Lam_Ismayilova
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