Thursday, 8 September 2011

Petrie launches £25,000 Egypt partnership | Museums Association

What a fantastic idea. Petrie launches £25,000 Egypt partnership | Museums Association: The Petrie Museum of Egyptian Archaeology has launched a collections partnership with the Egyptian Educational Centre and Cultural Bureau (EECCB), part of the Egyptian Embassy in London.

Last year the museum was awarded an Effective Collections Special Project grant of £25,000 for a scheme enabling unused objects from its collection to be displayed in the EECCB’s newly refurbished grade 1* listed building.

The Petrie Museum holds over 80,000 Egyptian artefacts but can only display around 10% of this collection at present due to the size of its facility.

Three rooms in the EECCB’s Mayfair property, including a large ballroom, are to be set aside to display over 100 objects from the museum on a three-year rotating basis. Busts, pottery and a large collection of combs are among the previously unseen artefacts earmarked for long-term loan.

Relations between the museum and source communities in Egypt have previously been hampered because of tensions over repatriation, but the museum hopes the partnership will foster cultural diplomacy and interrogate western interpretations of the collection.

Curators at the museum intend to develop displays in partnership with Fayoum University. The university is situated near to where Sir William Petrie carried out much of his excavation work. A 3D imaging tool will allow Fayoum experts to carry out design and interpretation remotely over the internet.

Collections coordinator Sally Cross said: “The Egyptian government does not often engage with collections outside the country so we are excited about this project’s potential to improve cultural understanding. Of over 30 Effective Collections projects so far, it is the only one with a cultural diplomacy bent.”

“The exhibition space is also near lots of Middle Eastern embassies and has the potential to attract people who might not otherwise come to the collections.”

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