Posts Tagged 'AS220'

News Update 27 November, 2012

Kia ora,

Those of you lucky enough to hear and meet Bert Crenca at the MA12 conference will recall his enthusiasm, and the dynamic youth programmes he founded at AS220 at Rhode Island. Last week First Lady Michelle Obama presented AS220 Youth with a National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award. One of fifty finalists, chosen from a pool of 350 applicants, and one of only twelve organizations to win. We’re sending a big shout out to AS220 Youth!

In the news: Capital E – the latest member to have their building closed due to earthquake risk – have found a temporary home at the Railway Social Hall on Waterloo Quay. They have hired space to run their programmes, OnTV and Sound House. Toitū Otago Settlers Museum is gearing up for their big re-opening on Dec 8th. Auckland Museums helped to solve the mystery of the dissappearing island. And the National Library is now fully open with ‘Te Ahumairangi’ – their new visitor space. ‘Te Ahumairangi’ is an exciting reconception of the traditional library space. We loved this idea for the Christchurch Cathedral now that demolition has been halted (thanks Christchurch Art Gallery).

There has also been more news of restructuring and staff moving around the country. Helen Kedgley has been appointed to the new position of Director at Pataka, and Fiona Emberton has left Puke Ariki. All this leads to more job opportunities – check out the latest on our Vacancies Page.

National Digital Forum was packed. Two days of presentations about how the culture and heritage sector are using the huge potential of digital technologies. Speakers included Piotr Adamczyk who talked about his experience at the Google Art Project; Catherine Styles showed us how National Museum of Australia’s game of associative thinking ‘Sembl’ can generate new engagement; Courtney Johnson talked about her idea for making an art collection categorised by emotion; and Suze Cairns asked ‘Are we remaking the museum in the image of the internet?’ A theme that was repeated by the speakers, both local and international, was the need for institutions to take a fresh look at their purpose. Museums are becoming less of a repository of objects and more of a generator of knowledge and stories. Day to day use of technologies is changing public expectations around access and expertise, and dissolving traditional boundaries between the institution and the outside world. All the speakers advocated for the ‘open museum’, for experimentation, risk, open access to collections and information and to actively seek out and give equal voice to their audiences.

Last week the Ministry of Business, Innovation & Employment released the latest tourism forcasts, 2012-2018. These are positive, predicting a nine percent growth in visitor spending (to $6.3 billion) and 28 percent rise in visitor numbers (to 3.3 million) by December 2018. Also predicted was a continuing decline in traditional markets such as the UK and US, off-set by strong growth from China and Australia. If this shift comes about, it will have implications for museums, as the Australian and Asian visitors make shorter trips. Read the full details here.

MA13: Hamilton, 10-12 April 2013

Thank you to everyone who has come up with ideas and suggestions for the MA13 conference. We have some really good speakers and topics lined up, and hope to squeeze in a few more yet. MA13 will start off with the second Museums Aotearoa Lecture on the evening of Wednesday 10 April, then two full days of conference, including the NZ Museum Awards dinner on Thursday 11 April, and some local tours. Early Bird registrations will open in December.

Phillipa is in Sydney this week at INTERCOM 2012, the conference of the ICOM International Committee on Museum Management, where she is giving a paper on Wednesday. The theme is #museumchallenges – which is also a Twitter hashtag. Even if you aren’t on Twitter, you can look up the conference tweets and see comments and links from and about the conference. There are delegates from over 25 countries, making it a truly international sharing of ideas and opportunities. While the challenges being shared are pretty tough – budget cuts, social change, stakeholder pressure etc – there is a really positive attitude towards the opportunities that museums need to embrace to ensure relevance and an ongoing place in society. We’ll share the experience with you in the next MAQ.

Nga mihi,
Phillipa & Talei

Advertisements

Umberto Crenca “The Art of Community”

Finally we have Umberto Crenca’s inspiring keynote address from MA12. “The Art of Community”

Friday 20th April 2012

(note this video includes a presentation by David Cross. Bert’s talk starts at 13:45 in part 1 of 4)

Umberto Crenca – Photo by Pam Murray

Umberto Crenca is the Artistic Director and Co-Founder of AS220, a nonprofit center for the arts in Providence, Rhode Island. AS220 was established in 1985 to provide a local, unjuried, and uncensored home for the arts. The organization maintains three buildings, providing: fifty eight artist live and/or work spaces, four exhibition spaces, a print shop, two darkrooms, a technology lab, a stage, a recording studio, a black box theater, a dance studio, and a popular bar and restaurant. AS220’s permanent establishment in the City’s downtown is widely recognized as one of the first significant steps in the creation of the Providence Arts and Entertainment District.

Umberto Crenca “The Art of Community” – Part 1 of 4 from Museums Aotearoa on Vimeo.

Umberto Crenca “The Art of Community” – Part 2 of 4 from Museums Aotearoa on Vimeo.

Umberto Crenca “The Art of Community” – Part 3 of 4 from Museums Aotearoa on Vimeo.

Umberto Crenca “The Art of Community” – Part 4 of 4 from Museums Aotearoa on Vimeo.

Reflections on MA12 – Andrea Hemmins

Over the next few days we will be posting some reflections from people about their experiences at MA12, starting today with Andrea Hemmins from The Kauri Museum.

Collaboration For Success while Maintaining Integrity

The Museums Aotearoa 2012 conference theme of collaboration was very timely and encouraging. With challenging times for Museums and Galleries now and ahead, keynote speakers were positive, realistic and some truly inspiring. The sharing and exchange of ideas and experiences was enhanced by being in Wellington, and at Te Papa, the heart of New Zealand’s culture and heritage. There was a mutual awareness of the current financial challenges and how adaptions can be made to overcome pressures facing most GLAM sector institutions.

The view from Te Papa

This was highlighted and reinforced by the Stick it to the Man campaign. A bold and honest move by Te Papa to urge the public to have their say about Te Papa today and Te Papa tomorrow. A simple but very effective campaign where a life-sized cut out of Director Michael Houlihan invites visitors to stick a ‘post it’ with their opinion on various walls throughout the galleries. The day before the conference a few ‘post its’ graced the walls, by Friday layers of colourful opinions and ideas sprung fourth and became part of the Te Papa experience. A clever method of empowering New Zealanders with a voice about their/our Te Papa; and most importantly creating a feeling of coming together for the greater good. Also an example of how the visitor can participate as collaborator. This all done at a time when media announcements were being made about budget cuts and limitations.

The reality is, no matter what industry you’re in, today there are now limitations we may not have experienced yesterday. Knowing that we’re in it together and can find ways to utilise each others resources and skills is a useful way to uphold staff morale, visitor experience and overall understanding. Being creative about overcoming restrictions and celebrating team achievement empowers everyone to a higher level.

Speaking of teamwork and celebration, Jock Philips kicked off the conference with an overview of his travels during the New Zealand Festival and Rugby World Cup to discover What is Real NZ? He frequented a multitude of small and large museums and outdoor celebrations from Invercargill to Auckland, drawing up a variety of conclusions in a blog along the way. He commented that the most successful places provided an ‘urgent relevance to the world around’ and that successful celebrations were where communities centred the activity, naturally bringing people together in a hive of activity and enthusiasm; whereas towns that sent visitors in different directions to the outskirts tended to dilute the atmosphere.

Jim Marchbank, previous CEO of Science North in Ontario Canada, provided very good practical advice for museums and galleries seeking collaboration with outside commercial and non-commercial partners. He spoke of collaboration for survival, and the need to remain true to mission statements and brand identities while fulfilling the mutual benefits for all parties involved. ‘Use your strengths and pursue win-win’ he stated. Though he was also quick to point out the importance of flexibility within your own organisation to cater to the requirements of an external party so as not to halt progress. He raised how expectations on both sides of a collaboration should be made clear in the beginning and that major decisions be shared so empowerment is equal and encouraged. A sense of pride on both sides is an indicator of success.

Umberto Crenca’s presentation was truly charismatic and inspirational. His presentation The Art of Community, about the complete turnaround of the city centre of Providence, Rhode Island, through the use of art, foresight, and pure determination, gave us all a reminder of why we love what we do. Whether museum, library or gallery based, GLAM professionals generally have a heightened social conscience, his work setting up the AS220 organisation to revive the city centre and install a sense of place through community participation for social improvement was commendable. This was recognized by the resulting applause. Each of us facing challenges of our own could relate to his vigor and drive to strive on for social awareness, education and facilitating overall greater good for communities.  

Umberto Crenca

The final segment was dedicated to Christchurch, with the museums and art galleries discussing how they came through the earthquakes, and how their futures look. A discussion involving emergency policies and procedures was very informative. On the panel, Coralie Winns Gap Filler project aiming to raise the morale of Christchurch residents through community projects in empty spaces around the city was greatly inspiring.

In summary, the conference relayed the importance of new and long term close working relationships for mutual gain; togetherness; and the power that can be harnessed by individuals and communities while upholding original long term personal and/or institutional goals. In the words of Victoria University student Shannon Wellington, in reference to collaboration ‘risk anything except your institutional integrity’ and put eloquently by celebrated maori language educator Mereana Selby, ‘behave in a mana enhancing way’.

Andrea Hemmins
The Kauri Museum


Museums Aotearoa Tweets

Join Museums Aotearoa

Advertisements

%d bloggers like this: