Tehran, 21 May 2018: UNESCO and the International Council of Museums (ICOM) in collaboration with the Iranian Cultural Heritage Handicrafts and Tourism Organization (ICHHTO) commemorated the International Day of Museums 2018 today in a joint ceremony at the Iranian Artist’s Forum.
Ms. Esther Kuisch Laroche, the Director and Representative of UNESCO Tehran Office in her statement to the event underscored the importance of the International Museum Day by saying: "Museums are an important means of cultural exchange, enrichment of cultures and development of mutual understanding, cooperation and peace among peoples."
The International Museum Day is celebrated this year under the theme of "Hyperconnected museums: New approaches, new publics”.
Elsewhere in her statement, the UNESCO Representative expressed that it is impossible to understand the role of museums without taking into account all the connections they make. “They are an inherent part of their local communities, their cultural landscape and their natural environment”, she said.
In November 2015, UNESCO Member States adopted the UNESCO Recommendation concerning the ‘Protection and Promotion of Museums, their Diversity and their Role in Society’; a set of global guidelines for the protection and promotion of museums and collections in a new era of enormous social, economic and technological change.
Yet, UNESCO’s commitment to museums is hardly new. Starting in the 1960s, UNESCO led the way in reimagining the role of museums, engaging in pioneering projects, such as the ‘Imaginary Museum’, to increase access to art through the reproduction of the world’s most famous paintings.
In recent years, UNESCO has intervened to protect and restore collections in post-conflict and natural disaster situations, to save the irreplaceable symbols of humanity’s cultural identities.
In Iran, UNESCO supports ICOM and the Iranian Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts and Tourism Organization in strengthening museum management and fight against the illicit trafficking of cultural property.