International museum delegates meet in Cayman

| 14/10/2016
CNS Local Life

Cayman Islands National Museum intern Shenice McField speaks at MAC 2016

(CNS Local Life): More than 70 delegates from across the region, the US, the UK and Canada attended the Museums Association of the Caribbean (MAC) 27th annual general meeting and conference held this week in Grand Cayman. The conference, from 9-12 October, was packed with events, workshops and presentations that showcased Caymanian and regional art, culture, heritage and history.

The theme for this year’s conference was “The Essential Museum – Redefining the role of cultural and heritage sector for the 21st century audiences”.

The annual event kicked off with a culture and heritage tour of some of Grand Cayman’s greatest landmarks, and continued through the night with “An Evening of Art” at the National Gallery of the Cayman Islands (NGCI), which hosted this year’s conference.

Many guests enjoyed a private after-hours tour of the gallery and a chance to view the National Art Collection, and the latest temporary exhibition, “Speak to Me: Understanding the Language of Art”.

The welcome ceremony on Monday (10 October) morning formally opened the conference with presentations by Ministerial Councillor for Culture Roy McTaggart, MAC president Dr Sherene James-Williamson and NGCI chairperson Susan Olde.

Keynote panellists included Natalie Urquhart, NGCI director; Amanda Coulson, director of the National Art Gallery of the Bahamas; and Dr Veerle Poupeye, executive director of the National Gallery of Jamaica.

“I believe having these types of creative minds come together to discuss how museums can define and demonstrate their public value in today’s modern age, and come up with appealing ways to adapt physical spaces for an ever-growing digital society is vital part of preserving our region’s history,” said Premier and Minister for Culture Alden McLaughlin.

Deputy Chief Officer Nancy Barnard gave a presentation on the progress being made on the first national policy and strategic plan for culture and heritage in the Cayman Islands.

The event “Looky Ya!” was held at the Cayman Islands National Museum on Monday night. The sound of traditional folk music, creative storytelling and the smell of local cuisine drew a large crowd to the museum’s courtyard.

MAC conference participants and locals experienced a presentation that included a performance by the Cayman Islands Folk Singers; poetry by Twyla Vargas, storytelling by author Virginia “Auntie V” Foster, entertainment from the Dance Trio and live music from the Swanky Kitchen Band.

The event also featured artisans from various districts around the island, who sold their local arts and crafts throughout the night. Museum guests took a tour of the building to view the various exhibits on display.

The agenda also included a reception at Government House, hosted by Governor Helen Kilpatrick, on Tuesday night.

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Category: Arts, Culture

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