The Palestinian Museum and the British Library announce first collaboration to conserve and preserve cultural heritage
The project begins with the establishment of the first paper-based conservation studio in the West Bank, at the Palestinian Museum in Birzeit, guided by British Library conservation experts. In parallel, two conservators from the Palestinian Museum will travel to the British Library Centre for Conservation in London for specialised conservation training this spring. Two British Library conservation experts will travel to Palestine to help their colleagues at the Palestinian Museum develop their capacity to enable large-scale conservation and digitisation of heritage collections, with the ultimate aim of making them available online and accessible for researchers globally.
As part of this project the Palestinian Museum has designed an education programme for its visitors, to raise awareness of cultural heritage protection needs and practices. It includes a series of specialised workshops, lectures, tours and an open day.
Rt. Hon. Clare Short, Chair of the Welfare Association - UK, said “We are very thankful to the British Council for funding this project, it is important that these historic collections are saved and available for all to see to advance our knowledge and educate future generations. Our thanks also go to the British Library for lending their invaluable expertise in this exciting joint venture.”
Dr. Adila Laïdi-Hanieh, Director General of the Palestinian Museum, expressed her gratitude for the generous contribution from the British Council and the valuable partnership with the British Library. “The partnership with the British Library is central to achieving our aspirations to acquire world-class expertise to protect, document and preserve Palestinian cultural heritage. With such expertise, the conservation studio we are establishing will be the first hub for conservation work and future training in conservation in Palestine. We aim to save large volumes of endangered photos and documents held by organisations, families and individuals, and preserve them for generations to come.”
Roly Keating, Chief Executive of the British Library, said: “We are delighted to be able to share the knowledge and expertise of British Library’s conservators to support the important work of the Palestinian Museum, protecting their cultural heritage and making it accessible to researchers around the world. One of the Library’s core purposes is to collaborate with international partners to advance knowledge and mutual understanding, and we hope that the Conservation for Digitisation project marks the beginning of a long and fruitful relationship with the Palestinian Museum.”
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A family picture of Mr. Musa al-Alami and his parents, 1920-1929, from the collection of Arab Development Society. © the Palestinian Museum.
Notes to Editors
Welfare Association is registered with the Charity Commission of England & Wales (Reg. No. 1020238). The Charity’s objectives are to provide support to the most marginalised and vulnerable communities in the West Bank and Gaza and in the camps and gatherings throughout Lebanon, in the following sectors: health, education, sustainable development and emergency humanitarian relief. www.welfareassociation.org.uk
The Palestinian Museum is an independent institution dedicated to supporting an open and dynamic Palestinian culture nationally and internationally. The Museum presents and engages with new perspectives on Palestinian history, society also and culture. It offers spaces for creative ventures, educational programmes and innovative research. The Museum is a flagship project of Taawon (Welfare Association) and one of the most exciting new cultural projects in Palestine. www.palmuseum.org