The V&A museum of art and design in London has just completed a three year £I million programme funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund entitled “ Capacity Building and Cultural Ownership Programme - working with culturally diverse communities.” Under the Hidden Histories strand of this programme the museum researched existing collections and developed new collections of relevance to diverse communities. This included historic collections of relevance to black British communities and people of diverse faiths and new collections related to diverse communities of the East End of London and Black and Asian theatre in the UK. The second strand focussed on making these collections accessible through a range of public programmes that attracted new audiences and contributed to intercultural understanding and social cohesion. Under the third strand the museum developed equitable partnerships with black and ethnic minority organisations, leading to skill sharing and capacity building of both mainstream and non mainstream organisations. These included such organisations such as Black Cultural Archives and the Anglo Sikh Heritage Trail. This paper will explore the programme’s impact on the museum’s core business and lessons learnt for both the V&A and the museum and heritage sector as a whole.
|Keywords:||Culturally Diverse Communities, Capacity Building, Cultural Ownership, Hidden Histories, Equitable Partnership, Margins to the Core|
Head of Diversity Strategy, Learning and Interpretation Division, Victoria and Albert Museum, London, UK
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