More museums needed

First National Museum Festival to be organised in Grodno this year

By Svetlana Savkova

Belarus’ Culture Minister, Pavel Latushko, has noted at a session of the Culture Ministry that 154 state museums are currently operational. At the instruction of the President, a Museum of Contemporary Belarusian Nationhood is being created, as well as exhibitions at the National History Museum and Nesvizh Palace and Park Estate. Moreover, following instructions from the Head of State, a Museum District is to appear in the Belarusian capital, housed along Kirov, Lenin and Karl Marx streets, as guided by the 2012-2017 State Investment Programme.

The Culture Ministry aims to firstly improve the management and marketing of its museums, using the latest IT and opening shops selling souvenirs and advertising goods. The second promising area of expansion involves international co-operation. Mr. Latushko notes that, in 2011, only a few Belarusian exhibition projects were presented abroad, including one by Brest Fortress in London and another by the Museum of Theatrical and Musical Culture History, in Warsaw. The Modern Fine Arts Museum has done well in this field, despite having a limited collection; it annually organises exhibitions from its own funds.

Mr. Latushko underlines we must update our approach towards the creation of new museums in Belarus. “We should consider carefully where to locate each museum, so that they can accent particular aspects of local history and traditions,” he asserts. Moreover, experience shows that we need to introduce contemporary elements into exhibitions. Accordingly, the Culture Ministry plans to organise a multi-level workshop dedicated to creating exhibitions, inviting specialists from Russia.

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