Craft Makers & Museums Brought Together In East Midlands

By Louise Davidson | 01 December 2005
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photo of the entrance of new walk art gallery

New Walk Museum and Art Gallery in Leicester is amongst the 19 participating museums. Courtesy Leicester City Council.

museumaker: a pioneering partnership programme between contemporary craft makers and museums across the East Midlands will begin on April 27 2006.

The partnership will give designer makers access to historic and archaeological artefacts to inspire their work. In turn the museums involved will get to exhibit and sell what they produce.

Participating museums from Lincolnshire, Leicestershire, Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and Northampton will aim to increase visitor numbers through the creative enhancement of collections and exhibitions.

Shows the museumaker logo, a graphic image comprised of the word museumaker transposed over the top of of a large m made up of red stripes.

"This is the only project of its kind in the country and we know that the tremendous range of museum collections in the region can’t fail to act as a catalyst for creativity,” explained Dr. Tim Hobbes, chief executive of the East Midlands Museums, Libraries and Archives Council (EMMLAC).

With this uniqueness in mind, the project has created a unique collaboration between Arts Council England, EMMLAC and Renaissance East Midlands.

Shows a photograph of the bison panel.

A bison panel, one of a number of cave engravings found at Creswell Crags in Derbyshire. Courtesy UNED.

museumaker will see over £300,000 invested in the appointment of three temporary and five permanent commissions at eight of the participating museums. This money will also contribute to the professional and retail development of all the museums involved in the programme.

The organisers have great confidence that museumaker will both inspire and stimulate the region’s creativity. Through its strong support of regional craft and local history, the programme highlights the integral role the creative industries sector plays in both regional and national economic prosperity.

Paul Mcanelly, the designer of the museumaker logo, embodies the attributes of this project. Head of his own design and illustration company – Hawaii - Mcanelly conceived of an image applicable to a range of media and retail items, both historical and craft related.

Shows a photo of a young girl standing on the lawn in front of Belgrave Hall.

A recent re-fit has restored Belgrave Hall to its turn of the 20th century glory. Courtesy Leicester City Council.

By amalgamating contemporary design with a slightly retro edge, the logo is intended to update any outdated perceptions of the museum sector and lead museumaker forward.

The deadline for regional makers to apply for the commissions passed on November 30 2005 and a panel of stake-holding agencies and participating museums will shortly reveal a shortlist.

The participating museums in full:

Alford Manor House Museum, Lincolnshire
Belgrave Hall, Leicester
Boston Guildhall, Lincolnshire
Buxton Art Gallery and Museum, Derbyshire
Castle Museum and Art Gallery, Nottingham
Charnwood Museum, Loughborough
Creswell Crags Museum and Education Centre, Nottinghamshire
Derby Museum and Art Gallery
Flintham Village Museum, Nottinghamshire
Gainsborough Old Hall, Lincolnshire
Harborough Museum, Market Harborough
Louth Naturalists,, Antiquarian & Literary Society, Lincolnshire
Mansfield Museum and Art Gallery, Nottinghamshire
Melton Carnegie Museum, Melton Mowbray
Newark Museum, Millgate
New Walk Museum, Leicester
Northampton Museum and Art Gallery
Oakham Castle and Rutland County Museum, Oakham, Rutland
78 Derngate, Northampton

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