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Network Conference: "Collections from Colonial Contexts: Challenges, Tasks, Strategies"

24.11.2020, 09:00 – 15:30 (online)

 

Organized by the "German Contact Point for Collections from Colonial Contexts"

The online conference takes Germany's Presidency of the Council of the European Union in 2020 as an opportunity to present the German Contact Point for Collections from Colonial Contexts to European and international actors, and to identify and discuss the needs and interests of people and institutions in the countries and societies of origin.

Aims

The network conference "Collections from colonial contexts: challenges, tasks, strategies" is intended to make the German Contact Point for Collections from Colonial Contexts known among European and non-European experts. It provides a first opportunity to promote the networking of experts from the countries and societies of origin, Germany and Europe, and to identify future cooperation avenues for the German Contact Point.

The conference intends to help initiate and develop cross-border strategies for dealing with collections from colonial contexts. It also aims at identifying and documenting meaningful cooperation structures and partners at the European level that will help people and institutions from the countries and societies of origin to obtain comprehensive information about collections from colonial contexts.

 

Sessions

The online conference will focus on the following three areas of activity and objectives defined in the document "Framework Principles for dealing with collections from colonial contexts" (Framework Principles for dealing with collections from colonial contexts): a) Transparency and documentation, b) Return, and c) Cultural exchange, international cooperation. In three thematic panels, participants will discuss and document the challenges, tasks and strategies related to these areas and will share successful practices and experiences. The discussions should result in recommendations for action and in the initiation of collaborations that contribute to overcoming the existing challenges and tasks when dealing with collections from colonial contexts.

Participants of the panel Transparency and Documentation will discuss best practices and challenges in the area of documenting collections from colonial contexts in Europe taking into account the following guiding questions: Which additional support do German and European institutions need for documenting and digitizing collections from colonial contexts? Which measures need to be prioritized? Are there ways of improving collaboration schemes with countries and societies of origin in the areas of documentation and digitization of collections for colonial contexts?

The starting point for the discussion in the panel on Return are the current political, ethical and legal challenges for the return of cultural objects from colonial contexts. In addition, the panel offers an opportunity to share current approaches in particular in the areas of science and research in connection with the return of collections from colonial contexts, and to identify relevant European and international measures and action models for the return of cultural objects from colonial contexts.

Participants of the Q&A session on Cultural Exchange, International Cooperation will share best practices and discuss the challenges in the areas cooperation and collaboration with the countries and societies of origin on dealing with collections from colonial contexts. In addition, the session offers the opportunity to discuss the needs and expectations on the part of the countries and societies of origin and agree on future perspectives and mechanisms for exchange and collaboration.

Panel participants

Experts and representatives from cultural institutions in Europe and from the countries and societies of origin, who have experience in dealing with collections from colonial contexts, in particular in the six areas of activity and objectives defined in the "Framework Principles for dealing with collections from colonial contexts": a) Transparency and documentation, b) provenance research, c) presentation and communication, d) repatriation, e) cultural exchange, international cooperation, and f) science and research.

Conference audience

Representatives of the EU member states as well as the countries and societies of origin, representatives of other countries, experts from cultural and research institutions in Europe as well as the countries and societies of origin, representatives from cultural politics and cultural administration offices, and other experts who deal with issues related to collections from colonial contexts.

German Contact Point for Collections from Colonial Contexts

The establishment of a German Contact Point for Collections from Colonial Contexts was jointly decided by the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media, the Federal Foreign Office Minister of State for International Cultural Policy, the Ministers of Cultural Affairs of the Länder and the municipal umbrella organisations. The contact point, with its seat at the Cultural Foundation of the German Federal States, aims in particular at individuals and institutions from the countries and societies of origin. As the new central port of call, it will provide information and advice on collections from colonial context in Germany, establish and promote cooperation networks, and collect, organise, document, publish and evaluate statistically pertinent data and information. In addition, the Contact Point supports the Federation-Länder Working Group on Dealing with Collections from Colonial Contexts in the elaboration and further development of the areas of activity and objectives defined in the "Framework Principles for dealing with collections from colonial contexts".

Contact

German Contact Point for Collections from Colonial Contexts
c/o Kulturstiftung der Länder
Lützowplatz 9, 10785 Berlin
EMail: contact@cp3c.de