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August 2015 Previous Issues

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Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar Inaugurates “Bihar Museum”
NDTV, 8 August 2015

PATNA, INDIA – Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Humar inaugurated the 500 Crore Bihar Museum, a museum believed to be his dream project. The Museum sits at the heart of Patna, and has opened three sections: children’s section, main entrance area, and an orientation theatre– while work continues on other parts of the museum. Lord Cultural Resources is consulting on the project, while Maki and Associates designed the building.

"Not only is this museum significant in the way in which it honours the rich history of Patna and Bihar” said Eric Leyland, the Creative Director of the project for Lord Cultural Resources, “ it was also planned and implemented by a women-led, Indian team- which has been virtually unprecedented until now. We are very proud that the Lord Cultural Resources team is 70% women and our predominantly local staff has gained the respect of workers, craftsmen, designers, engineers, and government officials alike".


Cultural News, a monthly global round-up of what’s happening in culture, is a free service of Lord Cultural Resources. Please click on the links to read the full articles on the original news sites. To receive it in your inbox rain or shine, please press the subscribe button above - it will take less than 30 seconds to become a subscriber. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter for the latest digest of cultural news.



Our Clients and Lord Cultural Resources in the News


Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar Inaugurates “Bihar Museum”
NDTV, 8 August 2015

PATNA, INDIA – Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Humar inaugurated the 500 Crore Bihar Museum, a museum believed to be his dream project. The Museum sits at the heart of Patna, and has opened three sections: children’s section, main entrance area, and an orientation theatre– while work continues on other parts of the museum. Lord Cultural Resources is consulting on the project, while Maki and Associates designed the building.

Magna Carta at the Canadian Museum for Human Rights
Metro News, 13 August 2015

WINNIPEG, CANADA – A 1300 C.E. edition of Magna Carta is on display at the Canadian Museum for Human Rights. The priceless document is on loan from Durham Cathedral in the UK as part of the travelling exhibition Magna Carta: Law, Liberty, and Legacy. Lord Cultural Resources had the honour to design, develop, and organize the tour for this travelling exhibition on behalf of Magna Carta Canada. The Canadian Museum of Human Rights was also a long-term project of Lord Cultural Resources.

Cities, Museums, and Soft Power Book Review
The Museum of the Future, 10 August 2015

AMSTERDAM, THE NETHERLANDS – Jasper Visser reflects on the way museums take on new responsibilities as they transform from government institutions into civic institutions. Visser reviews Cities, Museums, and Soft Power – written by Gail Lord and Ngaire Blankenberg, commenting on how cities should use museums as soft power tools and how “they should play a constructive role in the future of their communities.”

South African Museums Should Work Together To Stay Relevant
Business Day, 17 August 2015

SOUTH AFRICA - “In years gone by, museums were generally funded by governments and their exhibits sang songs in their praise,” said Ngaire Blankenberg in this article on the financial troubles facing South African museums. With government funding drying up, museums are turning to corporations, civil society, and individuals; the article suggests that they should also be turning to each other for help.

Hong Kong’s West Kowloon Cultural District Should “Sting Like A Bee”
South China Post, 17 August 2015

HONG KONG - Hong Kong is running in the global race to create a 21st century cultural district. With the first venues in the West Kowloon Cultural District, the Freespace and the Xiqu Centre, set to open in 2018, followed one year later by the M+ visual culture museum, Hong Kong is putting itself up against the likes of Berlin and Oslo. Gail Lord weighed in on the need to “build places for workshops and inexpensive living spaces for young people because they will be the people who go to coffee shops and theatres and who invent new technologies.” Lord Cultural Resources has worked with West Kowloon many times in varying capacities on this important transformation.

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Italy’s Cultural Minister Looks Abroad for Overhaul of Art Galleries and Museums
The Guardian, 18 August 2015

ITALY - Italy’s culture ministry has appointed 20 new directors to manage some of its top museums, including Florence’s Uffizi Gallery, with a number of foreigners brought in to revamp the way the country’s vast heritage is presented to the public. Fourteen art historians, four archaeologists, one cultural manager and a museum specialist make up the new directors, who will be at the forefront of cultural reform in Italy.

Asia Society Names New Museum Director
New York Times, 24 August 2015

NEW YORK, USA - The Asia Society has appointed a new director of its museum to replace Melissa Chiu, who left last year to become director of the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in Washington. The new director, Tan Boon Hui, is the assistant chief executive for museums and programs of Singapore’s National Heritage Board, which oversees four state museums. He formerly led the Singapore Art Museum. Mr. Tan, a 45-year-old Singapore national, will oversee the Asia Society’s arts and cultural programs internationally, including at its headquarters in New York, where the museum is based.

National Gallery Singapore to Open Its Doors to the Public on November 24th, 2015
Art Daily, 5 August 2015

SINGAPORE - The National Gallery Singapore has announced that it will open its doors to the public on the 24th of November 2015. The new visual arts institution will be home to the largest public collection of visual arts from Singapore and Southeast Asia from the 19th century to the present day. “As the first museum in the world dedicated to Southeast Asian modern art, the National Gallery Singapore hopes to captivate and kindle a curiosity for art – from art histories to the stories behind the art, from the discoveries we uncover about Southeast Asia and the world, to stories about ourselves,” said Ms. Chong Siak Ching, CEO, National Gallery Singapore.

Move Over, MoMA, New York’s New Climate Change Museum Is About to be the Hottest Place in Town
Grist, 13 August 2015

NEW YORK, USA - For many, climate change is not yet personal, but Miranda Massie is trying to change that. Massie is the founder and executive director of the forthcoming Climate Museum in New York City, a project that seeks to make the impacts of and solutions to a changing climate intimate and tangible. The Museum was chartered by the New York Board of Regents on July 20, which brings the project one step closer to opening day.

British Museums Are Most Googled in the World
Telegraph, 4 August 2015

LONDON, U.K. - British museums are the most googled in the world with the Science Museum coming out on top, new research has found. The capital's theatres also generate more searches than those in any other city, research by Google showed. The research was conducted in collaboration with London & Partners to launch London's Autumn Season of Culture. For the curious, the Natural History Museum comes second, with the British Museum in third place.

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Italy Earmarks 18 Million to Rebuild Colosseum Arena Floor Where Gladiators Once Fought
Art Daily, 5 August 2015

ROME, ITALY – The Colosseum may once again be home to spectacle on a massive scale. As part of an 80 million euro investment in Italy’s museums and heritage sights, the Colosseum will have its arena floor rebuilt. There are hopes that the museum could stage re-enactments of games and shows from the Roman era, and that the area below could be transformed into a museum.

Notre Dame Architecture Graduate Designs a Sanctuary for Pope Francis
Notre Dame News, 3 August 2015

PHILADELPHIA, USA - In September, when Pope Francis celebrates an outdoor Sunday Mass with some 1,500 priests and an estimated 1.5 million lay people, he will be standing in a sanctuary designed by James Lenahan, a recent graduate from the University of Notre Dame. On his first visit to the United States, Pope Francis will be in Philadelphia for the eighth annual World Meeting of Families. The Sept. 27 mass in front of the Philadelphia Museum of Art will be the gathering’s main event. Lenahan’s design was selected by the Archdiocese of Philadelphia from numerous submissions it had invited from schools of architecture in the United States.

Using Architecture for Humanitarian Causes
Dezeen, 27 August 2015

SYRIA - Architecture for Humanity co-founder Cameron Sinclair describes the work he is conducting in Syria with his latest venture, and tells Dezeen that he'll "die happy" knowing that he will never win the Pritzker Prize. Sinclair, 41, is a self-branded pioneer of a "new wave of humanitarian design" and has dedicated his career to providing design and construction services to communities around the world affected by natural and man-made disasters. "Years ago, when I said architects should get involved in humanitarian issues, people laughed at me," he told Dezeen during the What Design Can Do conference in Amsterdam. "It was a very different climate."

Burning Man: The Architecture of a Temporary City
Dezeen, 25 August 2015

NEVADA, USA - Later this week, 70,000 people will converge on a temporary city in the Black Rock Desert, Nevada. Burning Man founder Larry Harvey told Dezeen about the "stunning achievement" of creating a high-density, car-free festival in a remote and inhospitable landscape. In the early years, the Burning Man festival had few rules but as the event grew in scale, Harvey realised the anarchy needed to be replaced by a degree of order. "People craved orientation," he said during an interview with Dezeen. As a result the organisers realised they had to act as a "de facto government" of this huge temporary settlement, which came to be known as Black Rock City.

Theo Janseon’s Strandbeests Walk New England Beaches
Architectural Digest, 20 August 2015

MASSACHUSETTS, USA - I want to put new forms of life on the beaches,” said Dutch artist Theo Jansen at a TED Talk in 2007. “And they should survive on their own in the future. It’ll take a couple of more years to let them walk on their own.” Eight years later, the creatures have gotten their sea legs. These days the grand, spindly things walk, without human aid, across the beaches of Jansen’s native Netherlands. The kinetic sculptures made of humble PVC tubing and zip ties spring to life when their sail cloth wings catch the wind, and his most evolved species are able to move with little effort across the wet sand. The marvelous creatures make their U.S. debut this September at Massachusetts’s Peabody Essex Museum in an exhibition that will showcase the evolution of the uncanny animals.

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New Canberra Research Investigating Ways to Make Museums More Accessible to the Visually Impaired
ABC News, 7 August 2015

CANBERRA, AUSTRALIA - Enjoying a day out at an art gallery or museum is almost impossible for someone who is blind or visually impaired. But University of Canberra PhD student Beaux Guarini told 666 ABC Canberra he has been investigating ways of making beautiful artworks, sculptures and historic items more accessible. Mr. Guarini set up a pop-up museum display at the University of Canberra (UC) campus with blindness goggles and several tactile objects to explain to sighted people how the process could work. He used 3D-printing technology to create museum replicas of a 200-year-old Wedgwood sugar bowl with Egyptian-inspired motifs and a tin-plated toy car from 1930's Germany.

Museums are Using LEDs to Protect and Illuminate Paintings
Wired, 10 August 2015

INTERNATIONAL - Under museum lights, the vibrant yellows in Vincent van Gogh’s iconic sunflower paintings have muddied over time. The yellow pigment van Gogh used—lead chromate, more popularly known as chrome yellow—darkens so noticeably with light exposure that artists eventually switched to different yellow pigments entirely. But it’s not just Van Gogh’s yellows that suffer: Light will make most paints change color. So when a masterpiece is on display a massive team works together in order to keep the lights low and preserve the painting’s visibility at the same time. Recently, to reduce energy costs, art museums have been shifting to using energy-efficient LEDs. But the switch isn’t just about cost—it can make preserving paintings easier, too.

Virtual Reality: How the Samsung Digital Discovery Centre Created a Virtual Bronze Age Roundhouse
British Museum Blog, 10 August 2015

LONDON, U.K. - It’s the Monday after the Samsung Digital Discovery Centre’s (SDDC) virtual reality weekend. The British Museum team is reflecting on the process of developing a virtual reality experience, which puts 3D scans of two British Museum objects from a Bronze Age collection, and one from an item they hope to acquire, into the context of a virtual Bronze Age roundhouse. It’s been a really exciting project to work on, and lots of people have contributed – so they want to share the process behind making it happen.

A Next Gen Museum Show Takes Aim at Inspiring Next Gen Ingenuity
Smithsonian Blog, 17 August 2015

WASHINGTON, USA - A flashy new exhibition at the National Air and Space Museum not only replicates an elevator to space or a flight to Mars, it may also show how future museum shows may look. “We’ve never had as tech heavy an exhibition here as this one is,” says curator Roger Launius of what he calls the “strikingly different” new Above and Beyond: The Ultimate Interactive Flight Exhibition that just opened a five-month run in Washington, D.C. “This is the one that has the most electronics we’ve ever had. In fact almost everything in the exhibition has a touch screen, or a video screen or something to do.” The 5,000-square-foot show, designed by San Antonio-based Evergreen Exhibitions and funded in part by Boeing, has no less than 16 interactive stations designed especially to draw the tech-oriented digital natives of the 21st century.

Google Brings New Exhibits from Indian Museums Online
NDTV, 27 August 2015

INDIA - People can now see the latest exhibits from Kolkata's Victoria Memorial Hall, Dastkari Haat Samiti and Ramamani Iyengar Memorial Yoga Institute among others, online as part of Google's Cultural Institute. The US-based tech giant has added over 2,000 new images and 70 virtual exhibits to its platform through partnerships with various Indian institutes to give a glimpse of the rich Indian heritage to viewers across the world. "In the last two years, we have seen a huge traction to Google Cultural Institute. We have seen over 240 million page views. However, that has not affected these institutes negatively and they have seen higher footfalls," Google Cultural Institute Director Amit Sood told PTI.

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Art and Culture


Recording-Breaking “China: Through the Looking Glass” Closes Monday, September 7
Art Daily, 19 August 2015

NEW YORK, USA - A New York exhibition exploring Chinese influence on Western fashion has become a summer smash-hit, attracting a record 670,000 visitors in a sign of China's growing clout in America. Spread across 16 galleries, China: Through the Looking Glass, is the most visited show at the Metropolitan Museum of Art's Costume Institute and has been extended for three weeks. It broke the previous record set by a 2011 show celebrating the late British designer Alexander McQueen, which went on display shortly after his tragic death, the museum said. By the weekend, more than 670,000 visitors had flocked to the China exhibition, compared to 661,509 for McQueen, and has been extended until September 7, the Met announced.

Guggenheim Advances Contemporary Chinese Art Initiative with Appointment of Curators
Art Daily, 14 August 2015

NEW YORK, USA - The Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation strengthened its longstanding commitment to the study and support of contemporary Chinese artists with the appointment of Hou Hanru as Consulting Curator, The Robert H. N. Ho Family Foundation Chinese Art Initiative, and Xiaoyu Weng as The Robert H. N. Ho Family Foundation Associate Curator of Chinese Art. Led by Alexandra Munroe, the Guggenheim’s Samsung Senior Curator of Asian Art and newly named Senior Advisor, Global Arts, they will work as a team to develop the next two exhibitions scheduled as part of The Robert H. N. Ho Family Foundation Chinese Art Initiative, which was launched in 2013.

Chinese Billionaire to Build 17 Shopping Centres, and Fill Them With Art
The Art Newspaper, 26 August 2015

Chinese billionaire Adrian Cheng, who founded the non-profit K11 Art Foundation in 2010, plans to build 17 new shopping malls, which will also double up as exhibition and gallery spaces. Cheng’s New World Development Company already runs shopping centres in Shanghai and Hong Kong, with works by artists such as Olafur Eliasson, Damien Hirst and Yoshitomo Nara dotted around the store aisles. A spokesman for Cheng says: “We have 19 projects planned under the K11 brand, all of which are in China. When I say project, it includes mostly museums, retail art malls and also offices. Hong Kong and Shanghai are both in operation, so the remainder will be ready by 2020, and indeed, all will show art.”

Are Fine Arts Audiences Going Gray?
Forbes, 26 August 2015

USA - A changing of the guard is underway in America’s art museums. According to an Economist survey, more than a third of directors today are age 60 or older—many of whom postponed retirement to ride out the recession. Seven years later, turnover has begun in earnest, bringing an influx of new blood to the top. Unfortunately, the same can’t be said about their visitors. The audiences for these museums—along with other forms of the visual and performing arts—have been steadily graying and shrinking. Arts leaders are trying all kinds of strategies to boost engagement and shed the stuffy image surrounding these activities.

Priceless Stradivarius, Missing for 35 Years, Returned to Heirs of American Violinist
Art Daily, 7 August 2015

NEW YORK, USA - A priceless Stradivarius stolen 35 years ago from an American concert violinist was back in the hands of his heirs Thursday -- a happy ending to a long-running mystery cracked by a luthier's keen expert eye. The violin -- made in 1734 and estimated to be worth $5 million -- had been lifted in May 1980 from the office of Roman Totenberg at the Longy School of Music near Boston, where he taught. Totenberg died in 2012 at the age of 101 after a life that saw the Polish-born virtuoso, who immigrated to the United States in 1938, perform with a host of major American symphony orchestras. "Our only sadness is that our father is not here to see this," said his daughter, NPR public radio justice reporter Nina Totenberg, as federal agents returned the violin at a ceremony in New York. "But I think he is somewhere with my mother," she said, "celebrating with a shot of vodka.”

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Creative Economies, Creative Cities, Innovation and Urban Planning, Cultural Tourism


Nuclear Deal Paves Way for Cultural Diplomacy with Iran
The Art Newspaper, 24 August 2015

INTERNATIONAL - The nuclear deal signed by Iran and the US in July -the first step to lifting sanctions- has paved the way for cultural exchanges and joint projects between Iran’s museums and their counterparts in the US and Europe. Remarkable exhibitions could be in the pipeline, but first political hurdles have to be overcome. The director of the Louvre, Jean-Luc Martinez, plans to visit Tehran for talks. The Paris museum’s head of Islamic art visited in June. France’s foreign minister, Laurent Fabius, was one of the first to meet the Iranian leader, visiting in July after the nuclear deal was agreed. Italy’s foreign minister was quick to head to Tehran, too; the country is also in the forefront of cultural exchanges, lending four classical sculptures, including one from the Vatican Museums, to the National Museum of Iran in September.

Kazahkstan Gears Up for EXPO 2017
World Architecture News, 14 August 2015

KAZAKHSTAN - A new retail and leisure scheme in Astana, Kazakhstan will contain the country’s most extensive range of shopping and ultimate entertainment facilities. Part of the framework of the EXPO 2017 master plan, the centre will include restaurants, a food court, and cinemas with IMAX screens. There will also be an ice rink around a lake, children’s entertainment areas, an indoor rollercoaster, and dolphinarium. The zoning plan is intended to be a straightforward and dynamic arrangement, with two ‘curved’ racetrack malls to the west side and centre of the project for retail, and a dramatic single atrium forming the core of the entertainment leisure elements facing the EXPO to the east of the site. The building acts as a ‘galleria’ and ‘link’ between the University and the EXPO, and in addition is a strong functioning shopping layout. It is hoped that the building will act as an important route for EXPO visitors, and be a symbol of the EXPO after it is closed, as well as becoming the city’s major family attraction.

Vietnam and US Boost Culture-Tourism Cooperation
FTN News, 14 August 2015

INTERNATIONAL - Vietnam and the US will enhance cooperation in culture, sports and tourism, specifically through art performances, concerts and exhibitions to increase mutual understanding and people-to-people exchanges. At a working session in the US on August 10 between Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Hoang Tuan Anh and US Under Secretary of State Richard Stengel, the two sides agreed that culture and people-to-people exchanges play a crucial role in promoting friendship, peace and reconciliation between the two countries.

Berlin Builds New Cultural Centre in Bid to Set New Parameters for the 21st Century
South China Post, 17 August 2015

BERLIN, GERMANY - Adjacent to cultural landmarks on the world famous Museum Island in the heart of Berlin stands a massive white building under construction. Lovers of culture from all over the world are expected to visit once it opens in 2019. Welcome to the Berliner Schloss, home of the Humboldt-Forum, a 600 million Euro project that is one of the biggest cultural endeavours currently under way in Europe. With 160,000 square metres of gross floor space, the structure is set to become the centre of world culture and raise the international profile of Berlin. It will house more than half a million artefacts from outside Europe. Its proponents also hope it will bring the world together on a single stage for contemporary art and cultural activities.

Nigeria: NCAC At 40... Using Cultural Offerings to Turn Around Nigeria’s Economy
The Guardian (Nigeria), 19 August 2015

NIGERIA - With dwindling revenue from oil and Nigeria's lagging behind in terms of technological innovation though endowed with natural resources, the way to forward may be to convert these natural resources and its monuments into economic value. The platform to launch this new plan is the 40th anniversary celebration of the Culture Agency in Abuja. The Director/CEO of the NCAC, Mrs. Dayo Keshi, said that the need to showcase the economic value of Nigeria's cultural industries as well as redirect the attention of the public and private sector investors to the numerous economic opportunities in the creative sector is the major reason that the organization is rolling out drums to celebrate the 40th anniversary.

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