Annual Conference 2014, Graz (Austria), Ljubljana (Slovenia)

10 years ago


ICOM/ICDAD Annual Conference in Graz

15–17 October 2014

Organized by Martina Pall, Director Schell-Collection


Wednesday, 15 October 2014

10.00 - 10.30 Schell-Collection:
Opening of the conference
Welcoming speeches
Hanns Schell, Founder of the Schell Collection Graz, Austria.
Otto Hochreiter, GrazMuseum, ICOM Austria.
Helena Koenigsmarková, Director UPM - Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague, Czech Republic, President of ICDAD.
  Session 1
10.30 - 11.00 Collectors and Collections: Their role in decorative arts and design museums
Martina Pall, Schell Collection Graz, Austria
11.00 - 11.20 The collection of the locks and the bars in the City of Prague Museum
Jana Bělová, The City of Prague Museum, Czech Republic
11.20 - 11.45 Coffee break
11.45 - 12.15 Private collections and the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague (UPM) as a mirror of political changes in 20th century
Helena Koenigsmarková, UPM - Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague, Czech Republic
12.15 - 12.45 Silver Treasure from Prague
Martina Lehmanová, The City of Prague Museum, Czech Republic
13.15 - 14.00 Lunch at Schell-Collection
14.00 - 16.00 Schell-Collection: Guided tour through all three floors
16.00 - 18.00 Museum im Palais (Universalmuseum Joanneum), guided tour through the collections. Welcome through Wolfgang Muchitsch, Director UMJ, curator Bettina Habsburg-Lothringen and the conservator Valentin Delic
18.15 Aperitiv on the roof on the department store Kastner & Öhler including a spectacular view of the old part of Graz
19.00 Welcome dinner at Restaurant "Schmankerlstube"

Thursday, 16 October 2014

Session 2
09.00 - 09.50 The Role of Collectors in Establishing Museum Collections of Japanese Bamboo Basketry
Melissa Rinne, Kyoto National Museum, Japan
09.50 - 10.20 Design pieces in audio electronic collections
Špela Šubic, Museum of Architecture and Design, Ljubljana, Slovenia
10.20 - 10.45 Coffee break
10.45 - 11.20 Happy finds and unsolicited gifts - how to deal with Grandma's handbag
Rosita Nenno, Ledermuseum Offenbach, Germany
12.00 - 13.00 Lunch at Schell-Collection
13.30 - 15.45 Start towards Castle Eggenberg by tramway
  Guided tour through castle Eggenberg and garden by the curators Barbara Kaiser and Peter Schuster
16.00 - 17.30 Design Forum at Kunsthaus Graz (Blue Bubble), welcome through Prof. Peter Pakesch (Intendant UMJ). Meeting with the chief of the City of Design, Mag. Eberhard Schrempf
19.00 Dinner

Friday, 17 October 2014

09.30 - 10.30 Schell-Collection:
  Redesign of the MAK Study Collection: the New MAK Design Lab
Rainald Franz, MAK, Vienna, Austria
  Tiffany & Co. Archives - Acquisition Highlights, Upcoming Loans and New Projects
Annamaria Sandecki, Archiv Tiffany & Co, New York, USA
  History of world theatre museum Bakhrushin Theatre museum Moscow
Mariya Lipatova, Soviet and contemporary theatre at the Bakhrushin Theatre Museum, Moscow, Russia
10.30 - 11.00 Coffee break
11.15 - 12.30 General assembly
  Information about ICOM News 2014/15
Peter Keller, Dommuseum zu Salzburg, Austria, Treasurer ICOM Austria
  Invitation to the joined ICDAD & ICOMAM congress, Krakow-Warsaw 2015
Michał Dziewulski, National Museum of Krakow, Poland, ICOM Poland
12.30 - 13.15 Lunch
14.00 Departure by coach, post conference starts in front of the Hotel Mercure, Lendplatz (conference-hotel)
15.00 Stop in Ehrenhausen, the Eggenberger's mausoleum with guided tour

17-19 October 2014

Organized by Maja Lozar Štamcar, Senior Curator, The National Museum of Slovenia

16.30 Stop in a wine-tavern for dinner on the border to Slovenija
21.00 Estimated arrival in Ljubljana
Check in at City Hotel,
optional walk downtown with Maja

Saturday, 18 October 2014

9.00 - 12.00 Guided tour of city center on foot (11.00 light refreshments at the city hall)
  The Art Nouveau quarter (by Max Fabiani etc.), exteriors and several interiors of prime Baroque-Rococo (by A. Pozzo, G. Maček etc.), Historicist, Modernist (by I. Vurnik etc.), post-WWII Modernist buildings (by E. Ravnikar etc.)
12.30 - 15.00 National Museum-Metelkova (12.30 - 13.15 Lunch at the museum
  Welcome by hosts Barbara Ravnik, MA, NMS Director, and Tanja Roženberger, MA, Head of ICOM Slovenija, tour of the collections and temporary exhibits by respective curators
15.30 Coffee at an antique shop, Kongresnitrg
16.00 - 18.00 Guided tour on foot to see the work of architect Jože Plečnik by Dr Damjan Prelovšek, the main authority on the subject
18.00 - 19.00 Rest in the hotel
19.30 Dinner at a Slovenian-food inn (gostilna) in the main old city square

Sunday, 19 October 2014

9.00 Coach transfer (from hotel with luggage, taking lunch bags) to Fužine Castle (The Museum of Architecture and Design, MAO) on the outskirts of Ljubljana
9.30 - 11.00 Guided tour of the International Design Biennal (1964-2014) at MAO by Curator Dr Cvetka Požar (11.00 light refreshments)
11.30 - 14.00 Coach transfer and visit to Plečnik's cemetery architecture at Žale and the church at the Marsh of Ljubljana
14.00 End of post conference tour. Getting to Ljubljana Airport on your own (shuttle)
14.00 Departure by coach to Graz
16.30 Arrival at Graz airport
17.15/17.30 Arrival at Graz, main station


Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Collectors and Collections: Their role in decorative arts and design museums

Mag. Martina PALL
Director of the Schell Collection Graz, Austria

Without collectors and their passion for collecting, there is no museum!

Today the quality of an object is judged on the basis of its design and the brand recognition of its manufacturer. Art objects in former times were viewed differently. Then, it was the craftsmanship of the production, the knowledge of the technology, the selection of the media and the use of the materials that were the decisive criteria in the evaluation of an artwork. The Renaissance separated artists from craftsmen - but nevertheless there were many objects of everyday use to be found in the Wunderkammer ("Chamber of Wonders") and collections that provided fascinating evidence of the art of the craftsmen.
Applied art which typified "exceptional objects of daily use" was collected and enthusiastically imitated and copied in the 19th century.

Many large private collections were transferred to museums which themselves were founded on the basis of private collections. Without the passion of collectors, today's museums would be far poorer. The private commitment to the preservation and care of cultural heritage, often at great personal sacrifice, is perhaps the best proof that not only the State with its public museums is a good guardian of art.

Private collectors and private patronage are the driving force for public museums. Any barriers to this put upby government offices should be opposed while at the same time pursuing fruitful cooperation between both private and public museums through the exchange of loans, special exhibitions and the transfer of knowledge. It may be that private collectors wish to indulge their egos with their own museums, but they can however, thereby make an important social contribution to a vibrant and diverse art scene.

Mag. Martina Pall is an European Ethnologist and Art Historian from Austria. After several years of working at Universalmuseum Joanneum, she started working at the Schell Collection in 1997 and became director in 2006. Today Mrs. Pall is head of the museum and chief curator. She published 5 books about iron, locks, keys and cast iron.

The collection of the locks and the bars in The City of Prague Museum

Jana BĚLOVÁ, Ph.D.
Curator of The City of Prague Museum, Czech Republic

The City of Prague Museum planned to assemble collections from the very beginning in 1881. The main idea was to prevent the liquidation or sale abroad of articles valuable to Prague history.

The most important person who developed the collection in the Prague City Museum was its first curator Břetislav Jelinek, who later became director of the museum. The important part of the collection of locks and hinges came with the acquisition of the large collection of Jelinek's friend, the member of the Museum Committee, landowner and lawyer E. S. Berger. Also, there were a lot of items bought, donated or donated "ex officio" due to the activity of Prague's officials. Many bars are gifts, purchases, or "ex officio". But Mr. Berger's collection of locks is the most extensive.

These old acquisitions, mostly from the late 1880's to 1890's, were often mounted on wooden supports. These belonged to the "restoration". During these times the objects were cleaned and repaired to renew the function. For example new keys were made for the locks.

His method of filling the collection was an art-historical one. The subjects were systematized, supplemented and sequenced to show the evolution of the objects (for example the lock). Not always do these series subsume the object from Prague. There are also foreign acquisitions Jelinek was because of foreign purchases of disputes with members of the committees.

In the case of the collection of bars, the objects could be repaired, or we were able to add its missing parts. As for large objects, to reconstruction and composition of the original shape was undertaken. Thus, the bar from the chapel "sacellum" St. Norbert of Strahov Monastery from the 17th century could also be reconstructed. It is one of the most interesting purchases of the museum. It was bought in 1898. In 1905 the idea emerged to build the chapel in the exhibition in the new museum building, which in 1905 was only five years old. The author was the architect and member of the Museum Committee Antonín Wiehl. The project was never realised, but we have Wiehl's plans and drawings prepared for it. We can see now the interesting ideas of our former colleagues.

Jana Bělová Ph.D. is an Art Historian from Czech Republic. From 2002 to 2008 she worked at the Muzeum Dr. Bohuslava Horáka in Rokycany as curator of the cast iron, photography and furniture collections. Since 2009 she has been working in The City of Prague Museum as curator of the collection of prints and depository of building elements.

Private collections and the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague (UPM) as a mirror of political changes in 20th century.

Director of the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague, Czech Republic

UPM was founded in 1885 by the Prague Chamber of Commerce with the active support of major entrepreneurs, bankers and noblemen of the Austro-Hungarian Empire aristocratic. One of the most important personalities was Adalbert Lanna, the entrepreneur who for the third generation continued the entrepreneurial initiatives which in particular concerned especially all transport routes, onshore and on water, mines and ironworks. He created a large collection of glass, most of which he donated to the UPM. As to the other collections, he decided to sell them as a consequence of the national conflicts preceding the Great War. After the foundation of the Czechoslovak Republic in 1918 other personalities of the Czech entrepreneur milieu became promoters and patrons. Many of them were of Jewish origin.

These collections were dispersed during the Second World War and in the postwar period the restitutions were disturbed by the communist coup d'état with further waves of confiscations of private property and collections. Certain property was transferred to UPM and became again the subject of restitutions after the change of regime in 1989 as was church property or Jewish property where the heirs could be found. Much restitution is from the point of view of the museum fund irretrievable but this forcible method of acquisitions cannot be considered as legal. The caused injustice had to be rectified.

Helena Koenigsmarková studied art history at the Karlsuniversity of Prag and graduated with Ph.D. In 1971 she started working at the UPM and specialised herself on metal (cast iron, tin, etc.) and historical toys. Since 1991 Koenigsmarková is director of the UPM.

Silver Treasure from Prague

Curator of the applied art collection the City of Prague Museum, Czech Republic

In 2008 during construction work on one apartment house in Prague three workmen found a treasure. Nearly 500 kg of silver contained 21.317 items, mostly made of silver, but also nickel silver, of which 6.770 items were coins of European and world provenance, 14.547 items were small objects such as beakers, bowls, scent bottles, powder boxes, plates, cups and saucers, jewelry, bags and tin cans etc.

First it was considered as Jewish treasure, hidden because of the rise of the Nazis. But there was a page found that covered some pieces of silver from a journal dated to 1947. So it was considered as treasure hidden because of the fear of the rise of the Communists in 1948. In the end it was to be treasure made around 1955 the Prague silversmith Václav Adamec (+1963), who had been working for many companies already during the communist era. The items can be divided into three groups. Items made by different silversmiths collected as reserve of silver, pure silver objects, items made by the silversmith Václav Adamec - final products and semi-products. The silver treasure is a unique example of the content of a silversmith's workshop.

Martina Lehmannová is an Art Historian from Czech Republic. From 2001 to 2011 Mrs. Lehmannová worked in the Moravian Gallery in Brno as curator of the furniture collection, later as curator of Josef Hoffmann Museum in Brtnice and Dušan Jurkovič House in Brno. Since 2012 she has been working in The City of Prague Museum as curator of the applied art collection.

Thursday, 16 October 2014

The Role of Collectors in Establishing Museum Collections of Japanese Bamboo Basketry

Melissa M. RINNE, MA
Research Fellow and International Engagement Liason, Kyoto National Museum, Japan

Recognition of the artistry of Japanese bamboo basketry has been long in coming for museums in Japan as well as in the West. Although some major museums, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco, and the Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe Hamburg, have held Japanese bamboo works in their collections for sometimes a century or more, such works were not considered worthy of exhibition or dedicated research until the early twenty-first century.

Most Japanese bamboo works in major museum collections around the world arrived at the museums from private collections. It is private collectors and the donations of private collections that have fueled the exhibition and research of such basketry in recent years. Thanks to these collectors, past and present, the profile of Japanese bamboo art is experiencing a sort of renaissance today.

This presentation will examine the connections between private collections and Japanese bamboo art in several major museum collections, including the Lloyd Cotsen Collection of Japanese Baskets at the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco, the Edward C. Moore Collection at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and a newly acquired private collection at the Kyoto National Museum.

Melissa M. Rinne is Research Fellow and International Engagement Liaison at the Kyoto National Museum in Japan, and is active in the campaign to hold the 2019 ICOM General Conference in Kyoto. She received her A.B. (Honors) from Brown University, her M.A. from Kyoto City University of Arts (Monbushō scholarship recipient), and completed doctoral coursework at Kyoto University. After initially living in Japan for fifteen years-during which time she worked as curatorial assistant at the Kyoto National Museum and adjunct research associate at the Nara National Museum - she moved to the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco in 2005, where she spent nine years as Assistant Curator and then Associate Curator of Japanese Art. She helped organize numerous exhibitions of Japanese art at the Asian Art Museum, which houses the Cotsen Collection of over 900 Japanese bamboo baskets, the largest museum collection of its kind in the world. She is author of Masters of Bamboo: Artistic Lineages in the Lloyd Cotsen Japanese Basket Collection (2007), The Printer's Eye: Ukiyo-e from the Grabhorn Collection (co-author, 2013), In the Moment: Japanese Art from the Larry Ellison Collection (co-author, 2013) and numerous other publications on Japanese art.

Design pieces in audio electronic collections

Špela ŠUBIC, BSc
Museum counselor and curator of Museum of Architecture and Design, Ljubljana, Slovenia

In the field of industrial design, often situations are that private collections are often the main basis for exhibitions prepared by museums. There are two types of private owners of design pieces - those who use them and those who collect them. Private collectors are the ones who care more about the condition of objects, and usually collect unused items. And the question raised each time is: how much of those items should be owned by the museums?

Špela Šubic, BA Art Historian, graduated from the Faculty of Arts - Department of History of Arts Ljubljana, Slovenia. She collected data on Slovenian Video artists for SCCA, later published in the catalogue Videodokument (1999). Beside the work in the archives of the famous Slovenian architect Jože Plečnik, she organized several events to promote the Museum and Plečnik's Collection in public. Wrote articles on history of architecture for Veliki slovenski leksikon (Slovenian Lexicon) published by Mladinska knjiga (last issue 2005) and articles on Slovenian designers for Mel Byars Design Encyclopedia published by MoMA (2004).

From 2002 to 2010 she was Secretary General of Biennial of Industrial Design (BIO), a design promotion organization with 50 years tradition. Among major international projects, besides biennial exhibitions, with her team she organized Tapio Wirkkala exhitbion, Composites on Tour - 2, series of lectures on sustainability in design: Sustainable Alternatives. Now as a Museum Counsellor she is focused to museums' collection of Slovene authors in Museum of Architecture and Design and curated the exhibition of Niko Kralj, legend of Slovene industrial design and with coauthor Barbara Predan published a book on him.

Her recent research resulted in exhibition Marko Turk - Homo Faber, about the world famous designer and constructor of microphones. The catalogue will be translated to English at the end of the year.

Happy finds and unsolicited gifts - how to deal with Grandma's handbag.

Dr. Rosita NENNO
Scientific associate of Ledermuseum Offenbach, Germany

While one donation from the director of a tannery - the recent discovery of Roger Vivier's early prototypes of shoes - led to our most successful exhibition ever, we are constantly awash with undesired gifts from the estates of deceased persons. Undesired arrivals face us with special problems in a collection composed only of organic materials. How to communicate the dangers to the collections by bringing in contaminated items and how to deal with refusals: even high quality items cannot always be integrated into a 100-year old collection.

Rosita Nenno, Art Historian. Studies in Saarbrücken / Germany and Paris IV-Sorbonne / France.

In the late 1980s, first steps at the Musée d'Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris. Since 1989, curator of the European Collections of the DLM Deutsches Ledermuseum Schuhmuseum Offenbach - decorative arts, crafts and industry, fashion and design, contemporary leather art. Latest exhibitions: MACHT LEDER LUST - Hidden codes of leather dresses / Roger Vivier: SchuhWERKE.

Friday, 17 October 2014

Redesign of the MAK Study Collection: the New MAK Design Lab

Dr. Rainald FRANZ
Glass and Ceramics Collection, MAK Vienna, Austria

On the occasion of its 150th anniversary, the MAK is positioning itself more clearly than ever before as a museum for arts and the everyday world: the MAK DESIGN LAB, which was opened precisely on the MAK's 150th birthday on 12 May 2014, focuses the world-famous MAK Collection more clearly on everyday life and defines design as the central driving force to improve quality of life and to solve important issues for our future. Almost 2,000 exhibits arranged thematically across 1.900 m2 of newly designed exhibition space create inspirational connections between historical arts and crafts and contemporary design creations. Whereas the MAK Study Collection was arranged in a material-specific manner for more than 20 years, the MAK DESIGN LAB has been designed so that themes and spaces converge. The MAK FORUM provides an innovative, multifunctional space that can be used as a place of encounter or as an experimentation area for exhibitions, presentations, and educational program formats. The short presentation introduces the new exhibition spaces of the MAK.

Rainald Franz, Art Historian, Studies in Vienna, Munich, Rome, London, Venice.

Since 1992 working with the MAK-Austrian Museum of Applied Arts / Contemporary Art.

1996-2011 Deputy Head Library and Works on Paper Collection, since 2000 Provenance Research officer, since October 2011 Head of the Glass and Ceramics Collection and in charge of EU-Projects.

Various Exhibitions and publications, symposia e.g. "Gottfried Semper and Vienna", Vienna 2005 and "Leben mit Loos (Living with Loos)", Vienna 2008.

Assistant professor at the Vienna University and the University of Applied Arts: History of Ornament.

2007-2013 Chair ICDAD-International Committee of Decorative Arts and Design, 2011-2013 Head of the Austrian Art Historians Association.

Major topics of Research: History of Architecture, History of Ornament, Decorative Arts and early Design.

Tiffany & Co. Archives - Acquisition highlights, upcoming highlights and company news

Annamaria SANDECKI
Archivist, Tiffany & Co

Annamaria Sandecki is working for Tiffany & Co. for 23 years and is responsible for both the archives and the company's private museum. Her last publication was contributing an essay to the exhibition catalog "Inventing the Modern World; Decorative Arts at the World's Fairs."

The Bakhrushin State Central Theatre Museum in Moscow. Alexey Bakhrushin (1865-1929) and his collection

Senior researcher and curator of Soviet and contemporary theatre at the Bakhrushin Theatre Museum, Russia

At the turn of the 20th century Imperial Russia witnessed an extraordinary renaissance not only in the arts, but also in material culture, the sciences and the world of commerce. Indeed, a key reason for Russia's cultural rebirth lay in the charitable and patronal activities of Russian merchants such as Alexey Bakhrushin, Savva Mamontov, Savva Morozov, Pavel Tretiakov and Sergey Shchukin.

The Moscow businessman Alexei Alexandrovich Bakhrushin (1865-1929), who founded the world's first private theatre museum in 1894, at first collected portraits of actors, directors and artists and other individuals associated with the theatre as well as related documents, books, posters and memorabilia. Having become a collector by chance or rather as a result of a friendly bid, Bakhrushin became the first collector of theatre rarities and the history of Russian theatre in general.

Between 1909 and 1913 Bakhrushin transferred his treasures to the Russian Academy of Sciences for safe-keeping, i.e. before the state granted his museum public status. This procedure helped to save not only the collection but the whole museum after the October Revolution in 1917, when so many other private collections were nationalized and distributed between different museums across Russian territories.

Until his death in 1929 Alexey Bakhrushin continued collecting and enlarging his museum. And if at first he focussed on theatre rarities later Bakhrushin collected unique documentary archives, sculptures, theatrical costumes and props, posters, set and costume designs. Posters of A.Mucha and Diagilev's Season, sculptures of M. Vrubel and P. Trubetskoy, pictures and drawings of V. Tatlin, A. Exter, I. Bilibine, V. Serov, A. Golovin and others from the Alexey Bakhruchin's collection are the priceless masterpieces of The Bakhrushin State Central Theatre Museum today.

Mariya Lipatova. Graduated from Moscow State University (History of Russian Art Department). Member of the Association of Art Critics and Historians, Senior researcher and curator of the Fund of Soviet and contemporary Theatre at the Bakhrushin State Central Theatre Museum (ICOM member). Author of many articles devoted to Artists in Russian theatre of XX. century and to Bakhrushin Theatre Museum's history.

Invitation to the joined ICDAD & ICOMAM congress, Krakow - Warsaw 2015

ICOM of Poland and Curator of National Museum of Krakow, Poland

Two international committees of ICOM will have a joint conference in Krakow in September 2015. Our local host will be the National Museum and we have already brief plans including a very interesting program. We all met in April 14th - 15th of 2014 in Krakow and enjoyed the city and its museums very much. Director Zofia Gołubiew and Michał Dziewulski at the National Museum in Krakow will be our local hosts and they will be the responsible organizers responsible for this conference.

The conference will take place in September 16th - 18th in Krakow (arrival on the 15th). The vistis schedule will include lectures, meetings, discussions, museum and a citytour, behind the scenes program and receptions and dinners. Also board meetings for the committee, board members and general assemblie's for all the members. After the 3 day conference there will be a post conference tour to Warsaw where the host is will be Polish Army Museum and the National Museum in Warsaw.
International cooperation between museums is very important. We look at influences abroad; we study collections and museum work. We get to know each other and set up local networks that are useful in the future. ICOM is a worldwide non-governmental nonpolitical organization for museum professionals. We look very much forward to being in Poland next year.

Michał Dziewulski, historian, working in the National Museum in Krakow since 2000. Head of the Military Department of the Museum (since 2008) and head of the Armoury of the Czartoryski Museum, where he replaced Prof. Zdzisław Żygulski in 2013. Among the others he is co-author of the permanent exhibition in the Museum: "Arms and Uniforms in Poland". He is specialized in Polish and Eastern arms and armor and is working on Oriental-Occidental cultural crossroads in the 16th - 18th centuries. Also he is specialized in Japanese Tsuba.