Wednesday, 6 July 2016

Heterotopia - the place for otherness

Museums as places for otherness

I took this reference from the book Fifty Years of the Textile Museum 1958-2008,   I consider that it very much sums up how I feel about museums and galleries. They are places for new ideas to be generated from past collections and stories. They can create humility giving us a new sense of place and time. The opportunity to see items that if it weren't for museums and archives we would lose.

The Textile Museum is striving to be a place of openness and freedom but within that the visitor and researcher needs security. Hence the notion of heterotopia. Somewhere that sits between public and private. Open to collaboration, new ideas, and sharing the production of textiles in the past, present and importantly future.

This was very apparent walking around the mill floor. Seeing the old looms that still work and tell the story of production then moving through the door and seeing the Textiel Lab in operation. New looms doing the same job as old. New designers working effectively with technicians to test ideas and create new work. Inspirational.

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