The Context

Museums and archives are significant sites where cultural meanings are established and negotiated. The great social and cultural movements of the 20th century threw up a questioning of the traditional hegemonic role of museums and of the expert curators who programme them.

Put plainly, the questions for the 21st century are: What is a museum? What does it do and how does it do it? What else or more might it do? 'Breaking into the Museum' seeks to provide an answer to these questions.

The project focuses on:

  • Young voices and views from marginalised urban locations;
  • Engaging young perspectives/understandings/meanings with the mainstream;
  • New-media creative expression - producing video works for exhibition;
  • New audiences for museums - new ways to use and engage with museums - new promotions of museums as public spaces;
  • Challenging and enriching heritage interpretrations.

GMJ London Futures Image © GMJ Design 2008

'It is projects like Breaking into the Museum that inject energy and creativity into the organisation which is why I am so pleased that the Museum has worked with Manifesta. Viewing the films made by these young Londoners reminds us that this is the generation that will shape the future of our city, and our galleries should reflect their stories. The films are truly moving, and professionally executed, and I hope to see more of their work in the future.'
David Spence, Director of Programmes, Museum of London
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