The 21st Century Museum: A Place Where Cultures Meet?

How can museums build bridges both within and beyond societies?

Fri, 01 Jun • 17:00
Bellevue - Grote Zaal


Were you not able to attend The 21st Century Museum or would you like to rewatch the programme? Click here for the recording.

Museums over the world struggle to become more culturally diverse ranging from their visitors, programmes and exhibitions, to the management teams of museums and cultural organizations. How do museum professionals deal with this struggle? And how can museums – in Europe and the Arab world – build bridges both within and beyond societies?

An interesting example is The Louvre Abu Dhabi, which opened its doors for the first time at the end of 2017. The museum aimed at being a true ‘universal museum’ – a term that refers to famous museums with collections of art and cultural items from around the world. This is not a unique phenomenon. Western museums are increasingly looking to branch out to the Middle East. At the same time we also see an increasing interest in exhibitions with art from the Arab world in Europe, for example if we look at the Institute du monde arabe in Paris. Can we speak of an equal cultural exchange between Europe and the Arab world, which creates a greater mutual understanding between both parts of the world?

We will investigate these developments during a true cultural exchange, with cultural professionals both from Europe and the Arab World. Participants are amongst others:

Wim Pijbes – Emeritus General Director of the Rijksmuseum

Reem Fadda – Independent curator, based in Ramallah

Salama Al Shamsi – Senior Project Manager at Zayed National Museum at Department of Culture and Tourism

Juliette Singer Curator at Louvre Abu Dhabi

Achim Borchardt-Hume – Director of Exhibitions at Tate Modern

Moderated by: Lennart Booij

This programme is made in collaboration with Patrick de Vries.

For this programme there is free entrance for members of We Are Public



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