Hyperconnected museums: new approaches, new publics
9 JULY 2018
Perri Sparnon has won the 2018 ICOM Australia International Museum Day essay competition for her essay entitled Hyperconnected museums: new approaches, new publics. Perri is a student at The University of Melbourne, studying a Master of Cultural Materials Conservation.
ICOM Australia invited students studying tertiary degrees in museum studies, cultural heritage and related disciplines to write a 2000-word essay on the International Museum Day topic Hyperconnected museums: new approaches, new publics. They addressed the question:
What is a ‘hyper-connected museum’? Critique this concept and use a case study of a museum exhibition to discuss its potential to engage with new audiences. You should draw on the work of scholars and commentators, but your own views and suggestions are also encouraged.
Perri’s essay effectively defined hyper-connectivity and explained its broader implications, noting the importance of engagement with and between culturally-diverse communities. Her focus on material culture and the specific practice of conservation was unique amongst the essay submissions, and her choice of case study, Making the invisible visible: conservation and Islamic art at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, allowed her to focus on more subtle issues such as ‘invisible’ legacies that reside within cultural materials. She recognised the relevance of international issues, both historic and contemporary, and also the contribution made by ICOM in defining the cultural importance of museums, and supporting the roles and perspectives of the conservation profession.