Kochi ideal place for eco museum: UN development expert

Kochi, Sep 3: For internationally noted academician Amareswar Galla, Kochi is an ideal place for an eco museum.

Addressing a talk organised by Kochi Biennale Foundation (KBF) on Thursday, at David Hall in Fort Kochi he said this southwest coastal region of India is rich with heritage structures that make the city “most suitable” for eco museums.

“A majority of the people consider museums as a hall or structure that houses artefacts. But a museum can be a region which highlights a culture. When I took a stroll around Kochi, I found the place ideal as eco museum; so rich is its heritage,” he noted while talking on ‘Curating Cultural Values’ organised as part of KBF’s ‘Let’s Talk’ series.

Prof Galla, who is the senior adviser at Post-2015 UN Development Agenda and World Culture Forum, also highlighted the importance of valuing culture in the present scenario. “We value everything from economics to statistics, but not culture. We don’t acknowledge its value. My aim is to curate cultural value,” he added.

The ‘Let’s Talk’ series, which is a continuation of KBF’s ongoing outreach programme Kochi-Muziris Biennale 2016, is a platform for the artists, art critics, historians and academicians to interact with the people of Kochi and get to know the city and its culture better.

Prof Galla is revered as a strategic cultural leader, having been Australia’s first Professor of Museum Studies at University of Queensland in Brisbane. In addition to his extensive publication record, he is the founding Editor-in-Chief of academic journals dealing with Sustainable Heritage Development. He is also the founding Executive Director of the International Institute for the Inclusive Museum, India, Australia and Denmark.

The speaker was the International Technical Adviser for the transformation of Arts Councils, National Museums and the National Parks Board (now SAN Parks) in post-apartheid South Africa.

Prof Galla’s work, listed as best practice in the 2009 World Culture Report by UNESCO, included the establishment of World Heritage Areas as culture in poverty alleviation projects—Ha Long Bay and Hoi An, Vietnam and Darjeeling Himalayan Railway, India. He has received several international honours.


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