Finally, I want to close this post with an example of how cultural actions can also emphasize and foster creativity within older adults. A good example was given by the Beltaine Festival in collaboration with Age & Opportunity, settled in Dublin, Ireland. The Beltaine Festival is a unique event in Europe and has received support from different organizations in order to promote active citizenship among older generations of Irish population. Its aims are to raise awareness about people’s capacity to grow and be creative in older ages, to let older adults participate meaningfully in the arts both as artist, organizers, audiences and critics, and to frame a national policy that acknowledge the potential of arts to transform the lives of older adults. More information about the examples given here of good practice regarding Ageing, museums and cultural institutions can be found in this link to the Learning Museum’s Project.
Summing up, there have been several points among these three posts that address inclusivity in a wider than disabilities scope. The usage of memory and active participation, encouraging people to create and to express themselves in safe spaces created by museums, acknowledging diverse people as potential guests, creators, visitors and critics, re-reading museums’ collections from their points of view, approaching artistic objects to different audiences by guided activities in collaboration with specialists, and also making diverse people participants –directly or indirectly- of the task of collecting are some strategies that lean on an educational agenda more than on a design one.
Applying some of these points could make a huge difference when it comes to make museums and cultural institutions more accessible and inclusive spaces, and from Museum for All we encourage all kinds of museums and organizations to care a bit more about diversity and about making connections between different people, now even more that we all have been pushed through difficult isolation times and connection means a lot more to us.
Rocío Sola, for the Museum For All blog, December 2020