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Press Releases

International Museum Day 2004 - "Museums and Intangible Heritage"

January 2004

On 18 May 2004, museums all over the world will be celebrating International Museum Day. The theme for 2004 is "Museums and Intangible Heritage".

For the museum profession, the issue of intangible heritage is one of the most important areas to be explored in the years ahead. The museum has traditionally been a space in which material evidence of the past is collected, conserved and displayed. The practices, ideas, knowledge and skills associated with these physical objects have received less attention. Yet intangible representations are undoubtedly an essential part of any civilisation.

In the words of Jacques Perot, the President of ICOM, "The theme of this 26th edition of International Museum Day is of capital importance to museums, which must play a part in preserving and protecting the intangible forms of our common heritage from the threat of cultural homogenisation."

This year International Museum Day will pave the way for the 20th ICOM General Conference, which is due to be held in Seoul in October 2004 and will also focus on the theme of intangible heritage. The idea is that the innovative activities organised throughout the world on International Museum Day will provide inspiration and feed into the debates which will take place in Seoul during this unique international gathering of museum professionals.

International Museum Day was launched by ICOM in 1977. The aim of this annual event is to raise public awareness of the vital role museums play in society. With planned activities including open days, temporary exhibitions, guided tours and public events and workshops, 18 May 2004 will be a day of celebration for museums all over the world, and we invite all our members to take part in the festivities.

For further information about the theme or the activities planned for International Museum Day :



Updated: 6 October 2005