What we have learned – Reflecting on ‘Museums, Politics and Power’

DSC01078With the big Museum & Politics conference a few weeks behind us already, we, the project team, now took some time to look back. As we think all participants of the conference do, we are still in the midst of processing the many impressions, the great (and not so great) presentations, the conversations we had and the ones we should have had, all that in front of the impressive background of St. Petersburg and Yekaterinburg. And, last but not least, being in Russia in these difficult times, gaining some first hand perspectives – and personal input – on the political situation.

And we also looked back at our social media adventure, which we started back in November 2013. Continue reading

Museums – objects and subjects of territorial development

Section 2 of the Yekaterinburg part of the conference looked at museums on a broader scale, discussing the professional development of whole museum regions through professional exchange and the interplay of museums, cultural tourism and marketing of a region or city.

Wolfgang Stäbler and Olga Cherkaeva shared their experiences from many years of cooperation between German and Russian museums and museum professionals, from which both sides benefit a great deal, although working together is not always easy for several reasons, especially so now. But both expressed again their strong wish to continue the longstanding dialogue and exchange on cultural grounds.

On the Role of Museums

Volunteers building the New Belgica

Many of the Saint Petersburg conference participants traveled to Yekaterinburg for the second part of the meeting – a three hours flight to the Ural -, and many more Russian colleagues joined us there. But before any papers were presented, an agreement was signed in the presence of the international participants and many members of the press: the agreement of intent to establish a Hermitage-Ural cultural and learning center. Yekaterinburg has long been a closed city, but today it is bursting with construction and development projects, and the cultural center is an important component to make an appearance on an international scale. Continue reading

Tsarskoye Selo

P1030902The last day of the conference in Saint Petersburg took us to the Tsarskoye Selo State Museum for both tours and the roundup of the conference (see the Reflections post).  Such a magnificent place–what problems could they possibly have?  Amidst all this glamour, its director, Olga Taratynova, openly talked to us about the struggles to manage the site:  managing finances and coping with development pressures around this historic site; the same issues faced in many other countries and locations. Continue reading

Politics, Power, and the Public

Conference Section 4 on Thursday was officially running under the topic of ‘Museums and Internal Politics’ and took place at the A.S. Popov Central Museum of Communication. Founded as the museum of telegraphy, sitting just opposite the huge main post office building in Saint Petersburg, it was reopened in 2003. The new name reflects the many new topics that were then integrated and followed up through time– from horseback riding messengers until modern telecommunications. You can tell that major efforts have been made to include new ways of display and apply highly modern media to attract a wide range of audiences. The museum, run by 63 members of staff, welcomes 90,000 visitors per year, many of whom attend special events. Continue reading

Stoff zum Träumen: Das neue Depot der Eremitage

Zur Eröffnung des zweiten Depotbaus der Eremitage, “Staraya Derevnya”, wurde geladen. Lage: bedingt durch die rushour eine Stunde Busfahrt. Größe: viele Etagen, endlose Quadratmeter. Ausstattung: Depots begehbar oder mit Schränken (überwiegend noch leer), Restaurierungswerkstätten von Antiken über Mumien bis Photographie. Aufzug: bis 10.000 Kg Traglast. Material der Ausstattung: i.d.R. Stahl vom Geländer bis zum Schrank. Continue reading

Europa Nostra

Das Tsarskoje Selo State Museum und ICOM Russland luden in den großen Katharinenpalast zur offizielle Verleihung des Preises “Europa Nostra” an Dr. Olga V. Taratynova, Direktorin vom Tsarskoje Selo State Museum ein. Continue reading

Alt trifft neu. Impressionen von der Manifesta II

Generalstabsgebäude der Eremitage

Generalstabsgebäude der Eremitage

MANIFESTA ist eine wandernde europäische Biennale zeitgenössischer Kunst.
Zwei Jubiläen gilt es in 2014 zu feiern: 20 Jahre MANIFESTA 10 und 250 Jahre Eremitage.
Schauplatz sind verschiedene Standorte der Eremitage. Alt trifft neu.

Beeindruckende Raumfluchten bietet das ehemalige sowjetische Ministeriums für äußere Angelegenheiten der Hauptausstellung:das heutige General Staff Building. MANIFESTA 10 will einen kritischen Rückblick auf die vergangenen 25 Jahre werfen aus russischer und internationaler Sicht. Kuratiert von Kasper König im Auftrag vom Generaldirektor der Eremitage, Dr. M. Piotrovski, präsentieren zeitgenössische Künstler ihre Werke als Referenzen an die Eremitage. Continue reading


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