CMHR and The Manitoba Museum forge partnership to attract visitors, showcase history
WINNIPEG – September 27, 2013 – The Canadian Museum for Human Rights (CMHR) and The Manitoba Museum (TMM) today signed an important agreement to collaborate in areas such as marketing, educational programs, collections, exhibits and knowledge.
“Together, our museums will create a visitor experience like no other in the world,” CMHR president and CEO Stuart Murray said at a news event held today in TMM’s Urban Gallery. “Our unique approaches will strengthen each other for the benefit of this community, promoting both global human rights and Manitoba’s rich cultural heritage.”
The collections-based expertise of TMM complements and enhances the ideas-based approach of the CMHR. The two museums will share artifacts and expertise, develop programs and exhibits together, and work on cross-promotional tourism marketing. Similar agreements are being sought with Winnipeg’s other major cultural institutions.
“We now have an amazing opportunity to build on a ‘critical mass’ of museological excellence – located mere blocks from each other,” TMM CEO Claudette Leclerc said. “Not only is Winnipeg destined to become a national hub for human rights education, it can also become the city of Museum excellence with even more Canadians and tourists being exposed to our world-class interpretation, dioramas and educational programming.”
Winnipeg General Strike artifacts to be loaned to CMHR
For example, the CMHR has arranged to borrow from TMM key artifacts from the 1919 Winnipeg General Strike – a pivotal event in the history of Canadian labour rights. These include a Special Police armband, a Special Constable badge, a billy club, a photo plate depicting imprisoned Strike leaders, and a “One Big Union” lapel pin.
CMHR curatorial advisor Sharon Reilly spent 30 years as a TMM curator, where she developed its labour history collection, curated temporary exhibits on the Strike and helped produce an educational kit on the Strike for Manitoba students. TMM’s Urban Gallery was designed to interpret Winnipeg in the fall of 1920, in the aftermath of the Strike, portraying the socio-economic conditions underlying the confrontation.
“Labour rights are an important subject for the CMHR, and one where TMM has a wealth of resources,” Murray said. “Our Museum will not only feature an exhibit about the Winnipeg General Strike, but also include over 25 different Canadian and international exhibits and stories about workers’ rights throughout its galleries.”
TMM’s outstanding collections of Indigenous materials, and a Hudson’s Bay Company Museum Collection described as “Manitoba’s national treasure”, are among other key assets for joint programming and exhibit development. In addition, TMM’s expertise in archaeological research and collections management may someday assist with interpretation of important artifacts from the CMHR excavation of 2008 to 2012.
The Manitoba Museum is a non-profit organization and the province´s most-visited paid attraction. It has an award-winning Natural and Human History Museum, a Science Gallery, and one of Canada’s most advanced all-dome planetariums. The Museum also cares for over 2.8 million artifacts on behalf of all Manitobans.
Opening in 2014 in Winnipeg, the CMHR is the first museum solely dedicated to the evolution, celebration and future of human rights. It is the first national museum to be established in Canada since 1967 and the first outside the National Capital Region.