International Museum Day
"The future of museums: recovering and reimagining" is the theme that this May 18 focuses on the International Day dedicated to these cultural institutions, guardians of the cultural heritage of humanity.
The day has been held since 1977, sponsored by the International Council of Museums (ICOM, for its acronym in English) with the purpose of raising awareness about the importance of these entities for exchange and cultural enrichment, mutual understanding, collaboration and peace.
Museums have not been immune to the consequences of the emergency caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, with the closure of countless institutions and serious social and economic repercussions.
ICOM notes in this regard that this crisis, however, has also served as a catalyst for decisive innovations that were already underway, in particular a greater focus on digitization and the creation of new forms of cultural experience and diffusion.
The time has come to rethink our relationship with the communities we serve, it says, to experiment with new and hybrid models of cultural consumption and to strongly reaffirm the value of museums in building a just and sustainable future.
This is a crucial moment for our societies: museums must assume and lead the change, the international organization underlines and indicates that "we must advocate for the creative potential of culture as a motor of recovery and innovation in the post-COVID era."
International Museum Day has been a traditional celebration in Cuba, which has more than three hundred establishments of this type in different areas and throughout the country, with close ties with the communities.
To face the forced closure to the public, without losing their essence, museums have implemented various initiatives in a virtual way, such as exhibitions, contests and challenges, among others.
During these times of pandemic, Cuban museum specialists work to ensure that collections are in optimal condition for reopening, as well as documentation and inventory systems, research, curatorial projects, and the conservation of buildings.