Jewish Museums Today: Public & Space
February 20-21, 2017
JEWISH MUSEUMS TODAY: Public & Space is a two-day meeting that will focus on communication at Jewish museums in Europe. Through this new network meeting the AEJM aims at building up a network of museum professionals in the field of communication at Jewish museums, as well as supporting further professionalisation of this network. The programme will be hosted by the Jewish Cultural Quarter in Amsterdam (NL).
Registration is now closed.
As contemporary cultural institutions Jewish museums need to position themselves in a local, regional, national or even international cultural landscape. This can be achieved in different ways and by using different strategies, for example through organizing attractive temporary exhibitions, programming engaging and meaningful learning activities, or through becoming part of greater cultural networks or Jewish heritage routes.
When it comes down to communication and marketing, Jewish museums differ from their ‘non-Jewish’ con-colleagues Looking at current developments all over Europe, where Jewish museums are renewing themselves and new Jewish museums being established, our museums are looking for ways to communicate their messages to the world. Who are we as Jewish museums and why do we matter? However, beeing a Jewish museum is often not only about what you want your institution to be, but also how others perceive your institution. Often our museums are being confronted with preconceived notions about Jews or what a Jewish museum “is” or “should be” (a holocaust museum, an Israel-related museum). Furthermore, in the face of (re-)emerging anti-semitism, Jewish museums also have to communicate to its audiences that they are a safe place to visit.
In the course of 2 days, we will map the specific challenges in the field of museum communication that Jewish museums in Europe in all its diversity (size, geographical location etc) are currently facing, as well as discuss possible practical solutions through best practice examples. The AEJM will publish different calls for contributions.
The 1st day will focus on theme of Space: Transformation. Does museum transformation (renewal of core exhibitions or mission statements, new museum initiatives etc) offer opportunities for new communication strategies? What is currently happening in the field and which practices do we take as an example?
The 2nd day will be centered around the theme of Public: Breaking Down the Barriers. Who do we address and what are the expectations of our visitors? What do we do when our self-image does not match with how our audiences – existing and potential – perceive us? What are barriers to attendance, both from Jewish and non-Jewish audiences, and how do we deal with these barriers?
On the 3rd day (optional) we will visit selected museum institutions in Amsterdam for behind-the-scenes meetings with other communication departments.
The AEJM network is invited to send staff members that are responsible for communication policies & strategies and the implementation of communication and/or marketing. Also smaller museums that do not have separate communication departments are encouraged to participate.
The AEJM has allocated a small budget for travel grants to support smaller member institutions with limited resources. Please send a motivation letter (ca. 300 words) to Project Coordinator Nikki Boot by email.
Monday 20 and Tuesday 21 February, 2017
Optional programme on 19 and 22 February
JEWISH MUSEUMS TODAY: Public & Space is an initiative from the Association of European Jewish Museums and is organized in close collaboration with the Jewish Cultural Quarter in Amsterdam.
Photo: Jewish Historical Museum Amsterdam