The International Day of Museums is celebrated annually on May 18th. This day has been celebrated around the world since 1977, when the general conference of the International Conference of Museums (ICOM), held in Moscow and Leningrad, decided on an annual professional holiday by suggestion of the Russian delegation. A few years were necessary for society to recognize the need for such a holiday. Since 1978, more than 150 countries have begun celebrating the International Day of Museums. There are more than 10 museums and exhibition spaces founded and open at SUSU. Museum staff celebrate their professional holiday with new openings and achievements. We got in touch with the director of SUSU’s educational museum complex, Nadezhda Ivanova, and spoke about the holiday, new exhibits, openings, and exhibitions.
– How is the Day of Museums celebrated?
– The holiday is celebrated across our country. On this day, many museums open their doors for everyone completely free, prepare new exhibits, topical lectures, excursions, hold scientific conferences, and organize museum celebrations. Often, there are also themed festivals held in honor of this cultural event, the most popular of which is the Night at the Museum which has become especially popular in the last few years. In the Chelyabinsk Historical Museum, this festival is traditionally supported. The majority of Chelyabinsk and Chelyabinsk regional museums have a day of giving where city and town residents gift the museums household items, photographs, and documents with historical or cultural value. In the SUSU History of Museum this new kind of exhibition is only three years old. It is developing and actively being added to with new materials on the history of the university and region. All of the university’s museum spaces will be waiting for guests on their holiday.
– Are students interested in SUSU history?
– The SUSU museum of history is actively visited by students and staff of the university. The museum exhibition is located along the path that many SUSU guests, participants in conferences and all of the mass cultural events, take when visiting. The museum’s location (in the building of the thermotechnical building, built first in the future collection of SUSU architectural buildings), presupposes organized visits. Among the most active visitors we can note students of the technical faculties, economists, linguists, and historians, who have been holding their conferences in the museum’s equipped accommodations. The museum is especially actively visited in the beginning of the academic year, when newly enrolled students get to know the university’s history which they will learn.
The 2016-2017 academic year can be noted by the following most shining events in which the SUSU Museum of History participated: excursions for regional schools for training young leaders were organized and held; a lecture and meeting for the handicapped (Chelyabinsk House for the Blind); groups from Germany student Russian language; specialists in economic issues from USA; the delegation of the International Research Council; international guests of the faculty of linguistics; delegations from China and Kazakhstan; guests from Bashkir and Latin America; participants of the engineering skills competition Best Engineering Designer; delegation from Uzbekistan; participants of the Eurasian Gate to Russia exhibition; participants of the XV Russian Competition Step into Future (Juniors); and a delegation from Iran. The museum’s collections were added to by many new materials, among which was a unique collection of old photographs, books, and documents, given by historians (more than 1000 pieces); a professor’s gown, the modern uniform of the SUSU Student Construction Brigade; rare editions of Soviet political literature, materials from work by prospectors, and memories from veterans. I must especially note the electronic archive of the amazing photographer, graduate of CPI, Yu. Teush (more than 4000 files). In the days leading up to the great holiday, Victory Day, the SUSU Museum of History was given an amazing gift from the family of a legend – university veteran Milovan Ilich Kovachevich (12 tomes of the rarest editions of topical books dedicated to the main events of the Great Patriotic War), the family of the university’s first rector got in touch with the university and gave them an electronic version of the documents and memories of lieutenant-colonel Aleksey Yakovlevich Sychev.
– Do you offer work for students in the museum?
– There are two excellent miniatures of SUSU created by specialist and students of the construction majors. We hope that the materials gathered by history students – memories from university veterans, student artwork created within the SUSU architectural complex, and the photo archive of the university’s photo school will add to our collection.
– What interesting exhibitions are being held at SUSU now?
– In the Museum of Art there is a graphic exhibition, the opening of an exhibition by Pavel Bolshakov, Crimean Spring, was held on May 6th on the 8th floor, and the exhibition of student work on the 9th floor has been updated.