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ARTS > ICOM Committee to be reestablished in Turkey

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A Turkish committee will replace the Culture and Tourism Ministry as representatives on the International Council of Museums (ICOM). Experts are satisfied with the council’s new decision and the reestablishment of ICOM Turkey. ICOM Turkey will be open to all museologists from all over the country

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Turkey’s former ICOM National Committee could not represent ICOM in the best way and that is why the representation has been given to the Association of Museum Professionals Turkey.

Turkey’s former ICOM National Committee could not represent ICOM in the best way and that is why the representation has been given to the Association of Museum Professionals Turkey.

Hatice Utkan Hatice Utkan hatice.utkan@hdn.com.tr

Turkey’s museum sector prepares to enter a new era with the new decision of The International Council of Museums (ICOM). Currently, the council has decided to establish its own committee under the title of ICOM Turkey and discontinued direct relations with the Culture and Tourism Ministry.

Turkey’s former ICOM National Committee could not represent ICOM in the best way and that is why the representation has been given to the Association of Museum Professionals Turkey, said a written statement by the association.

“In previous years, Turkey’s ICOM committee [which was backed by the ministry] did not accept people, who were working in a profession related to museology and museum studies. ICOM Turkey also didn’t attend the ICOM General Board Meetings in the recent years,” the statement said, explaining the decision.

The transformation process began when the decision was made by ICOM executive committee’s 121 meeting on Dec. 4 and 5, 2011. ICOM decided to cancel the accreditation of Turkey’s ICOM National Committee and transferred accreditation to the Association of Museum Professionals Turkey. With this decision, the council will have its own committee.

Body of museum professionals

The new body is to be made up of museum professionals from across the country; a selection of these are former members of the now defunct Turkish committee, said Burçak Madran, member of the Association of Museum Professionals Turkey.

“The new committee will be more transparent and this should’ve been done earlier. With this new decision ICOM Turkey will let all museum professionals become involved in museology without discriminating,” she added.

“There will be no sanction on museums in Turkey, as a result of the decision. The new ICOM Turkey committee is a nongovernmental organization which supports museum studies and museology in the country,” she said. “ICOM can determine certain standards as a supportive institution.”

Reducing red tape at museums

The new organization will not be politicized, according to an article in Artnewspaper.
“A centralized, bureaucratic and complex system at the Ministry of Culture and Tourism causes communication problems between the ministry and individual museums.Within such a system, supported also by legislation, the museum management seek decisions from the central authority rather than deploying their own decision mechanisms,” said ICOM, according to Artnewspaper.

Vasıf Kortun, director of the non-profit Salt art venue in Istanbul, told the Hürriyet Daily News that with ICOM Turkey, there would be a more active and negotiable environment in terms of museum studies. “It’s not easy to become a part of ICOM committee for a museum.”

 “Because ICOM has standards and in Turkey not all the museums have those standards,” Kortun said.
The important thing is ICOM’s bureaucratic situation, Kortun said. “ICOM is a council, which is running in classic ways and from Europe.”

Currently there is a question on how good IC OM is in harmony with the new developments in the art world, because there is a new world in terms of art, he said.

“However, ICOM is a very important establishment,” said Kortun, adding that it was a very serious development for museum studies and museums of Turkey.

February/03/2012

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