The Spider-Web of Heritage: An Inclusive Museum Case

By Kristina Ahmas.

Published by The International Journal of the Inclusive Museum

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

The Spider-Web of Heritage is an inclusive model for collective expertise and identity building by heritage and introduces a social innovation of intangible heritage. The model is able to expand and include more partners in the collective knowledge creation and dissemination processes.

The goals are to provide tools of identity building for local audiences:
a.) for the newcomers who moved in to get employed;
b.) for the native inhabitants who wish to be connected with their roots
and to establish an inclusive museum in order to lower down the threshold to join heritage processes and enter the museum.

The model aims to provide people with life contents by local heritage and bring people in connection with their family and neighbourhood roots. This is done by offering entrance to intangible heritage that gives ingredients for collective identity. It also lowers down the threshold to join heritage processes and appreciate local heritage sites. Amateurs act as intermediaries between the “by reputation rigid” museum and ordinary townspeople.

Members of the audience are taken as co-authors in the core of the museum and make a knowledge resource in the museum. The amateur historian group “The Wise People” work in the cause by their passion and enthusiasm and keep a data bank of micro historical narratives, stories, pictures and deposit material they collect. The data provides irreplaceable added value to academic research by museum and local intangible heritage gets documented.

The model as an organizational knowledge (expertise) production model is equated with the concept of outsider art in the context of art world.
organizational expertise: = art world:
institutional status institutional status
professional status established art genre
academic qualification aesthetic value

Spider-Web expertise: = outsider art:
inclusiveness inclusiveness
amateur-expertise immunity to cultural stereotypes
processual knowing effectiveness of expression.

Keywords: Organization, Open Expertise, Amateurism, Aesthetics, Artworld, Outsider Art

International Journal of the Inclusive Museum, Volume 4, Issue 3, pp.51-62. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 972.886KB).

Kristina Ahmas

Head of Museums, K.H.Renlund Museum-Provincial Museum Central Ostrobothnia, Kokkola, Finland

I work as the head of museums in Kokkola. I have a lively interest in developing my museum towards inclusiveness and I have specialized in leadership. My background is in art history, aesthetics and jounalism (MA in University of Helsinki, Finland) but since 2006 I have been working on my Ph.D in organization studies (University of Vaasa, Finland). OS give an interesting view to museums that have a reputation of ivory towers in a community. Many museums suffer from inertia and organizational ridigness in practises. Management in museums is usually recognized as administration, but leadership instead has had a minor emphasis so far. Leadership has the capability of valuing the museum personnel as a resource and including audiences as well. My doctoral thesis deals with questions of leadership, especially aesthetic leadership (including emotions) and expertise. I introduce the transmodern museum with the concept of “amateur-expertise”; I find it a way to reach the inclusive museum.


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