All About The Museum!
By Joan Butterfield
The majority of people on Earth know what a museum is today, whether they havebeen to one or not. They know that it is a building full of art or artefacts from the pastthat have to be preserved to demonstrate what history was like for future generations.Art, of course, is very valuable and has to be maintained in order to retain that valuebecause it is easy for such items to degrade over time. However, knowing all of this,have you ever though what the actual definition of a museum is?In fact, the Museum Association decided upon the definition of museum in 1998. It isofficially “…institutions that collect, safeguard and make accessible artefacts andspecimens, which they hold in trust for society.” In the same passage the MuseumAssociation also points out that they are sources of inspiration and can be used for thepurposes of both education and enjoyment. This is most definitely a modern viewbecause the previous definition was far more rigid and foreboding in terms of thelanguage used and would no doubt not appeal to the majority of younger peopletoday: "A museum is an institution which collects, documents, preserves, exhibits andinterprets material evidence and associated information for the public benefit."As you can see, the latter definition makes museums sound as if they are somewherethat people are forced to go for the sake of their own education rather than for theirown enjoyment. Museums can be extremely enjoyable but it was feared that theyounger generations would not go to visit them if they still had the perception of themuseum as a stuffy, outdated anduncomfortbale place to go. The new definitioncertainly helps to expel that view and certain encourages younger visitors to take alook at the collectoons of art that any given museum would have. Certain othermuseums, such as historical museums, certainly needed a boost in attendence in thelate 1990s and business is now slowly but surely picking up!When you look at the definition, it is certainly tru of the Louvre in Paris. The Louvreopened in 1793 and has since established its reputation as one of the best museums in