Sunday, 24 July 2011

Cinema Museum Awarded a Happy Museum award

Congratulations to KOV members the Cinema Museum, who have won a HAPPY MUSEUM award of £6575.

The Happy Museum Project, funded by the Paul Hamlyn Foundation, was launched in March 2011 with the paper The Happy Museum co-written by the New Economics Foundation and leading museum commentators. Its concluding ‘manifesto for well-being’ argues that museums have innate qualities which can inspire a re-imagining of a society which values co-operation and stewardship of our surroundings as much as it does economic well-being.

The awards will go to:

• Manchester Museum for The Playful Museum
• Lightbox in Woking, Surrey for Landscapes of The Mind,
• The Cinema Museum, London for Creative Community Curators,
• London Transport Museum for The Conversation Hub,
• Godalming Museum for Collecting Connections
• The Story Museum, Oxford for Happy From the Beginning

Robert Dufton, Director of Paul Hamlyn Foundation says:

“These new commissions explore how the principles of happiness and well-being can leave a legacy of cultural change within the museum and galleries’ organisations or communities. Museums offer spaces to consider the past, and through that to understand our lives today, and help shape our future. The Happy Museum proposes a way for them to serve our communities by helping them to become more resilient for the future.”

The Happy Museum scheme attracted over 40 applications demonstrating the readiness of the UK museum sector to respond to challenges presented by the need for creating a more sustainable future with a focus on well-being and social change.

The awardees will form a community of practice stimulated by a series of activities taking place between 2011-13, including a 2 day symposium in January 2012 which will introduce commissioned projects and leading thinkers from museums to people with a psychology and social policy background developing work around subjective well-being along with climate scientists, environmentalists and energy specialists.

The six commissioned projects and reports from the Symposium will be disseminated via the Happy Museum website, connecting people interested in this radical approach to re-imagining the purpose of museums. The project concludes with a Conference in January 2013 which ‘rounds up’ the commissioned projects, establishing a way forward to further embed principles of happiness within the sector.

Creative Community Curators, The Cinema Museum (£6575), based in The Lambeth Workhouse (once home to Charlie Chaplin) invites local people to explore the museum’s international collection of cinema memorabilia to become ‘community curators’. ‘Everyone who comes here loves it’ says Martin Humphries, director, ‘And it’s because of that love we’re still here. We can reward our fantastic volunteers for their commitment and reach out to our local community in Elephant and Castle so they can tell us how to curate.’