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Conferences and Workshops

Opportunities for the Sharing and Exchange of Knowledge

Conferences and workshops organized by Musées de la civilisation lead to original discussions between museum professionals, researchers, and policy makers. Together they reflect on museum practice as well as on current cultural, social and historical issues.

Whether open to the general public or aimed at a small group of handpicked guests, these scientific meetings always combine theory and practice. Fostering debate and the clash of ideas, the participants' diverse backgrounds largely contribute to the originality of the events initiated by Musées de la civilisation.

(French description only)

MUSÉES ET SAVOIRS DE L'HISTORIEN : Remarques sur une évolution
Conférence de Dominique Poulot

1er décembre 2015, 15h à 16h30, Musée de la civilisation, Québec
 

Le Centre interuniversitaire d'études sur les lettres, les arts et les traditions (CÉLAT) et l'Institut du patrimoine culturel (IPAC) de l'Université Laval, en collaboration avec les Musées de la civilisation, présentent une conférence de Dominique Poulot (Université de Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne) portant sur le thème « Musées et savoirs de l'historien ».

Les rapports du musée aux savoirs sont a priori l'un des éléments de la définition de l'institution depuis l'origine – soit le mythe d'Alexandrie et de sa fameuse bibliothèque-musée. Pourtant, le principe de la transmission de « connaissances », en particulier historiques, de la part des musées en direction des publics a connu au cours de ces dernières décennies des formes très variables, et fut souvent contesté de multiples points de vue. L'évolution récente de certains musées a pu sembler marquée par de nouvelles responsabilités mémorielles, ou civiques, généralement participatives, au détriment des liens avec l'Université ou avec la recherche. Paradoxalement, ce fut aussi le moment où l'intérêt académique pour les musées, leur rôle, leur potentiel, s'est développé autour des études d'histoire « publique ». Dominique Poulot esquissera ici un tableau de ces différents mouvements à partir de cas français et internationaux.

Dominique Poulot, membre honoraire de l'Institut Universitaire de France, est professeur à l'Université de Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne, président du Comité des Travaux Historiques et Scientifiques (École des Chartes) et Titulaire de la Chaire du CÉLAT et de l'IPAC à l'Université Laval. Ses recherches portent sur l'institution du musée et plus largement sur la patrimonialisation aux époques moderne et contemporaine.

Since 2014, Musées de la civilisation has partnered with Universidad del País Vasco (University of the Basque Country) to organize and host annual museology conferences in San Sebastián, Spain. Each year, academics and museum professionals from around the world discuss and debate on current topics in museology and heritage.


12th edition: "The Gender of Cultural Heritage: Discrimination, Silence, Equality"
October 20 and 21, 2016

Gender issues occur in various areas of today's social life. During this symposium, the gathered professionals will focus on the tensions generated by the feminine/masculine categorization, taking as a reference the report Gender Equality: Heritage and Creativity published by UNESCO in 2014. This report states that, in the processes of creation and re-creation of cultural heritage, women are either not recognized or minorised. Indeed, few locations on the World Heritage List are directly linked to the history and the life of women. This indicates that androcentric interpretations of heritage prevail in the identification, selection, presentation and transmission of cultural heritage.

Circular (French)


11th edition: "The Musealization of Memory: Representation and Heritagization of Armed Conflict"
October 22 and 23, 2015

What processes are involved in the heritagization and representation of armed conflict in museums and heritage spaces? What role do museums and heritage spaces play in the processes of constructing and legitimizing this type of collective memory? What challenges arise in addressing this subject? What role do they play in the resolution of armed conflict? How are armed conflict and violence represented in exhibitions? What repercussions do such museological representations have for the public? These are some of the topics considered by the symposium.

Call for proposals (French)

Circular (French, Spanish, Basque)

Program (French, Spanish, Basque)


10th edition: "What and how to exhibit in museums and heritage spaces?"
October 23 and 24, 2014

Some of the topics to be addressed included, but were not limited to: representation of multiculturalism and sociocultural diversity in exhibitions; exhibition design against the backdrop of spectacle, performance, and the commodification of cultural heritage; collaborations between museums and heritage sites with public institutions in the design of new exhibitions; new forms of interactions between specialists, local communities and the public in exhibition design; and exhibition design against the backdrop of new technologies, technologization and the Internet.

Preliminary program (PDF) (French, Spanish, Basque)

Book published following the symposium
Arrieta-Urtizberea, Iñaki (dir.). El desafío de exponer: procesos y retos museográficos. Servicio Editorial de la Universidad del País Vasco, San Sebastián, 2015

"Creativity and Indigenous Museology: A Dialogue Between Artist-Curators from Australia and Québec"

A seminar on indigenous heritage and the integration of the arts, at Musée de la civilisation in October 2015.

October 19 and 22, 2015, Musée de la civilisation, Québec City

In conjunction with the opening of the exhibition Lifelines. Indigenous Contemporary Art from Australia, Musées de la civilisation hosted a seminar titled "Creativity and Indigenous Museology: A Dialogue Between Artist-Curators from Australia and Québec" on October 19 and 22, 2015. This activity is the result of a partnership with La Boîte Rouge vif, an organization affiliated with Université du Québec à Chicoutimi. The Secrétariat aux Affaires autochtones du Québec and the Shaputuan Museum in Uashat Mak Mani-Utenam have also contributed support.

The seminar aimed to promote exchange between indigenous artist-curators from Australia and Québec. Participants discussed the integration of the arts, and more generally of indigenous heritage, in Australian and Canadian museums. Themes included: How do participants define themselves in relation to dominant museum practices in their countries or regions? In other words, how to they perceive their roles as indigenous artist-curators? Do their approaches to heritage presentation differ or resemble those of non-indigenous museum professionals?

Québec was represented by participants associated with museums and interpretation centres active in various indigenous communities. Most are curators or artists involved in the promotion of First Nations culture. Indigenous participants from Australia formed a delegation as well, composed of curators who are also established artists and associated with various national museums. This seminar was not open to the public.

For more information :

Jean Tanguay, chargé de recherche
418 643-2158 ext. 242
jtanguay@mcq.org

Workshop Series: "Spaces for Memory and Culture"

A unique partnership between Serviço Social do Comércio de São Paulo (SESC- São Paulo) and Musées de la civilisation, in collaboration with Museu da Pessoa, presents a series of heritage studies workshops.

São Paulo, Brazil, since 2014

These annual heritage studies workshops bring together museum and heritage professionals from Brazil, Québec, and elsewhere to reflect on current museum practices. The workshops are intended to stimulate the creation of strong and lasting networks of expertise among the cultural institutions of the city of São Paulo, and between the cultural communities of Brazil and Québec. The workshops also provide a dynamic space for exchange, with group activities to promote the sharing of knowledge and experience among participants.

Held annually in July, the workshops draw on the collaboration of more than a dozen cultural institutions in São Paulo, along with the support and active engagement of the Department of Culture of São Paulo. Workshop registration opens in spring and involves a selection process organized by the Centro de Pesquisa e Formação. Registered participants receive a Heritage and Museum Studies Certificate issued by SESC-São Paulo and Musées de la civilisation.

This series is made possible through the support of the Department of Culture of São Paulo, Brazil, and Québec's Ministère des Relations internationales et de la Francophonie.

Facebook page

2015 edition: "Spaces for Memory and Culture: Participation and Community"
July 27 to August 1, 2015, Centro de Pesquisa e Formação, SESC-São Paulo, Brazil

Presentation of the workshop (PDF)

(French description only)

"LES MUSÉES ET LEURS PUBLICS - Savoirs et enjeux"

Colloque international sur la pratique de l'évaluation dans les institutions muséales

1er et 2 décembre 2014, Musée de la civilisation, Québec

Pour qui les musées existent-ils ? Toutes les institutions muséales sont confrontées à cet enjeu fondamental qu'est la relation avec les publics.  Pour remplir adéquatement leur mission, elles doivent analyser les comportements des visiteurs, s'interroger sur la portée de propositions culturelles, préciser leurs intentions.

Vingt ans après la tenue d'un premier symposium qui avait marqué le développement des études de visiteurs au Québec, ce symposium intitulé Les Musées et leurs publics - Savoirs et Enjeux propose un bilan des connaissances accumulées par la pratique de l'évaluation et dégage des axes de réflexion clés :

  • Il dresse un bilan historique et critique des préoccupations et des problématiques qui ont alimenté le champ des recherches en évaluation depuis les premiers travaux de Gilman en 1911.
  • Il illustre des savoirs produits par l'évaluation au cours des 30 dernières années.
  • Il remet en question l'usage de l'évaluation dans les institutions muséales et, surtout, l'utilisation des résultats par les concepteurs et les décideurs.
  • Il expose l'incidence du numérique sur la pratique muséale, l'expérience muséale – celle de la visite – et les techniques d'évaluation.
  • Il jette un éclairage sur la sociologie des publics et les nouveaux indicateurs de satisfaction.

L'ouvrage du même titre est enrichi d'un glossaire des concepts et des termes spécialisés les plus fréquemment utilisés en évaluation. Il permettra aux chercheurs en évaluation de mettre en perspective leurs travaux et aux praticiens du milieu muséal de s'interroger sur leurs opérations, sur leurs rapports avec la recherche, sur leurs savoirs et sur leur raison d'être.

Affiche du symposium

Programme du symposium

Biographies des conférenciers et des auteurs

"Museum, Creativity, Performance"

International symposium organized by Musées de la civilisation and its partners as part of the 27th Entretiens Jacques-Cartier

October 9 and 10, 2014, Musée de la civilisation, Québec City

Québec and France, unlike other countries in Europe and around the world, have no performing arts museums. Meanwhile, the memory produced by those involved in the performing arts is at risk of fading or being lost, despite the fact that they are vectors for the many issues rippling through our society.

In recent decades, however, a number of museums have developed a broader vision of their mission. Previously devoted to collections-based conservation, preservation, and research, they have redefined the scope of their actions, engaging with various scientific disciplines and different forms of artistic expression. The performing arts are natural partners for museums, being involved, like them, in a multi-channel approach to communication that is open to new technologies.

Recognizing that the borders between museum practices and the performing arts are growing increasingly porous, the conference "Museums, Creativity, Performance" brings together museums and stakeholders from various performing arts environments to reflect on the conservation, preservation, transmission, and dissemination of the memory of the performing arts, from both theoretical and practical perspectives.

Program of activities (PDF, in French)

Conference abstracts and biographies (PDF, in French)

"The Past Exposed. History and Historians in Museums"

May 9, 2013, Québec City

Over the past decades, history museums have acquired considerable autonomy: mediators of knowledge produced by historians, they are also producers, directors and actors. In reconstructing the history it wants to tell, a museum makes a selection. In so doing, it assumes its authority and expertise in the mediation of knowledge.

If the museum contributes in this way to creating meaning, it is also a formidable passageway, where knowledge from basic research crosses the borders of the university to reach the general public. Collaborations between historians and museum specialists are numerous and unavoidable. Yet these two groups rarely have the opportunity to openly discuss the nature of their collaboration, and more broadly, the place and role that history plays in the museum.

The purpose of this meeting, organized by Musées de la civilisation and the Centre d'histoire de Montréal at the 81e Congrès de l'ACFAS, was to encourage discussions between historians and museum practitioners, to reflect on arising ethical challenges of with regard to the dissemination representation of history in museums, and to identify prospects for the future.

A total of fifteen historians and museum practitioners were invited to collectively reflect on current issues, in hopes of identifying new avenues of research.

Complete program: http://www.acfas.ca/evenements/congres/programme/81/300/28/c


"It's my museum! Citizen and community impact on current museology"

May 9, 2013, Buenos Aires, Argentina

In 2013, Musées de la civilisation and the Federación Argentina de Amigos de Museos (FADAM) presented the symposium "¡Es mi museo! Impacto ciudadano y comunitario en la museología actual". Held in Buenos Aires, this symposium meeting brought together international and national speakers to reflect on the role of the community and a participatory approach to the renewal of museum institutions. This event was made possible thanks to the support of our partners ICOM - Argentina, World Federation of Friends of Museums (WFFM), Fondación OSDE, Asociación Amigos del Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes and Hotel Pestana Buenos Aires.

Event program

Introductory remarks

Presentation by Lucie Daignault, Head of Evaluation, Musées de la civilisation


"Québec's Cultural Diversity Through Time and Space"

October 25-26, 2012, Musée de la place Royale, Québec City

For several decades, cultural diversity has been the focus of many discussions and debates. While immigration has diversified Québec's population like never before, we try to define the foundations of the Québec identity, to discover areas of disagreement and common anchor points to foster a sense of belonging for the cultural groups that make up Québec. In parallel, the aboriginal issue requires Québec society to revisit its intercultural past and renegotiate its relationship to itself and the land. However fruitful they are, current debates on cultural diversity often ask resolutely contemporary questions that might make us forget that Québec itself was born of diversity - the arrival of large waves of immigrants starting in the second half of the nineteenth century. After a slowdown at the end of the 1920s, immigration reignited in Canada after the Second World War, when nearly a million immigrants, mostly European, chose Québec. Starting in the 1980s, immigrant populations diversified again with the arrival of populations from the Hispanic, Asian and Arab worlds.

As part of a historical perspective, this research workshop, organized by Musées de la civilisation and Centre interuniversitaire d'études québécoises (CIEQ), was aimed at taking on the issue of cultural diversity from a geographical and diachronic perspective. How to "read" and especially "tell" about cultural diversity in Québec through time and space? Or in other words, how to understand it over the long term and take it into consideration in all its complexity and historical depth?

Program of the event: http://www.cieq.ca/activites.php?niv2=colloquescongres&niv3=partenariat


"Beyond Stone. The Tangible and Intangible Heritage of Québec's Religious Communities"

In partnership with Musées de la civilisation, this conference of the Canadian Catholic Historical Association (CCHA) brought together nearly 200 specialists to reflect on the tangible and intangible heritage of religious communities.

September 23-24, 2011, Musée de la civilisation, Québec City

At a time when certain communities are leaving one way of life for another, it has become important to reflect on the fate of their heritage, including furniture, archives, documentary and the intangible. Carried out in collaboration with Musées de la civilisation, Laboratoire d'histoire et de patrimoine de Montréal, Conseil du patrimoine religieux du Québec and Centre interuniversitaire d'études québécoises, the event aimed to discuss issues related to the preservation of objects, works of art, archives and libraries belonging to religious communities.

Complete program : Program

Opening of the conference Beyond Stone. Mélanie Lanouette, Director of Musées de la civilisation Research Department


"Migrations. Scientific Perspectives and Museological Mediations"

November 4-6, 2010, Musée de la civilisation, Québec City

For about twenty years, the theme of migrations has been a trend in the museum community, as evidenced by the creation of migration museums in North America, Australia and Europe. This interest is stimulated by a context favourable to migration and immigration in particular, and responds to contemporary social and political issues.

To extend the reflection on the exhibition On the Road: The Francophone Odyssey and, more broadly, on migration phenomena, Musées de la civilisation held an international symposium on the theme of the history of Francophone migrations, or migrations in the Francophone environment. The objective of the symposium was to reflect on how museums appropriate this theme and transpose it into exhibitions. It was also meant to be an opportunity to take stock of the current state of research and to reflect on relationships between scientific communities and venues for the dissemination of knowledge.

A book that prolongs this event, entitled "Musées, histoire, migrations", was published in 2015 by Presses de l'Université Laval.

As for all exhibitions, research at Musées de la civilisation follows the principles of a theme-based museology. Research activities include :