European Commission - 7th Framework Programme European Museums and Libraries in/of the age of migrations last updated: February 2015

Collecting and Collections in Times of War or Political and Social Change

3-6 December 2014

Celje, Slovenia | Celjski Dom

The 2014 annual conference of COMCOL will be held from 3-6 December in Celje, in Slovenia. The theme of the conference will be: Collecting and collections in times of war or political and social change.
The aim of COMCOL is to discuss the theory, practice and ethics of collection development. One of the issues is the social context of collection development, in particular the impact of prevailing ideologies. The 2014 annual conference is the last of a series of three conferences in which COMCOL explores this issue from different perspectives. In 2012 (Cape Town) they discussed how the concept of utopia influenced (and influences) the forming of collections. In 2013 (Rio de Janeiro) they discussed the re-interpretation of older collections, focusing on exhibitions as a medium for re-interpretation. In 2014 the organising committee would like to explore the triangular relationship between ideology, the institutional mission and collection profile. In particular we would like to explore how museum missions are influenced by changes in political ideologies and regimes, and to what extent collection profiles are adapted to the new missions.

During the conference the focus will be on the theoretical views and different recent and contemporary examples. Since in recent decades significant regime changes have taken place in different parts of the world, we would like to ask participants to look at the impact of changing the ideological perspectives on the formation and development of collections. Furthermore, the conference takes place in the year in which the start of World War I is commemorated – a war that had a huge impact on the political developments in Central Europe and in other parts of the world. How did museum collections respond to the aftermath of the turmoil of war, and how are they being used in today’s commemorations?


» link to the Conference