Guided tour

Fashion
2 June 2019 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Guided tour
Fashion
2 June 2019, 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Pretty clothes are fun and contribute to our individuality. But how are designs created? What narratives lie hidden in the yarn? In StrawGold and other exhibitions we encounter numerous objects that provide background information as to the way we dress, and invite us to explore fashion traditions in other parts of the world.

> With Nadja Breger

Free entry

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Kids and families

My fabulous creature
2 June 2019 13:00 - 17:00 PM
Mein Fabeltier
Kids and families
My fabulous creature
2 June 2019, 13:00 - 17:00 PM

Using wood, furs, cloth leftovers, tulle, shells, and bags of imagination we create a mythological creature. At the same time, we consider where the materials come from. Are they natural or artificial?

> With Leah Vogler

> Material: CHF 5.–

Free entry

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Mein Fabeltier

Grasping anthropology

Who Needs this mask? Discussions concerning the restitution of cultural heritage objects
5 June 2019 18:00 - 19:30 PM
Wer braucht diese Maske? Debatten um Rückführung von Kulturgütern
Grasping anthropology
Who Needs this mask? Discussions concerning the restitution of cultural heritage objects
5 June 2019, 18:00 - 19:30 PM

What’s behind the claims for the restitution of cultural heritage objects? What does restitution mean for the future of anthropological museums? How does one reconcile the interests of the countries of origin with the concerns of research and conservation and the interest of museum visitors? In a short guided tour of Thirst for Knowledge meets Collecting Mania we first take a look at some “sensitive” objects before debating the issue in a podium discussion.

With Dr Anna Schmid, director of MKB, Prof Dr Elisio Macamo, University of Basel, and Prof Dr Gesine Krüger, University of Zurich.

Admission fee

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Wer braucht diese Maske? Debatten um Rückführung von Kulturgütern

Guided tour

Thirst for Knowledge meets Collecting Mania
9 June 2019 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Guided tour
Thirst for Knowledge meets Collecting Mania
9 June 2019, 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Museums are facing challenging times: what seemed a must for an ethnographic museum in the past – for example, a collection of human skulls – has now become a sensitive issue. The guided tour explores the motives behind the collecting mania of earlier days and poses questions as to the appropriate handling of sensitive objects today.

> With Reingard Dirscherl

Admission fee

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Guided tour

From Maya script to website
16 June 2019 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Von der Mayaschrift zur Website
Guided tour
From Maya script to website
16 June 2019, 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Chiselling texts, carving signs, painting symbols, digital data world: what does generating data actually mean?

> With Christophe Schneider

Admission fee

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Von der Mayaschrift zur Website

Special event

Brass serenade
23 June 2019 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Brass Serenade
Special event
Brass serenade
23 June 2019, 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Very British, Southern Dixie charm, Brazilian fire, or do you prefer classical music after all? In this picnic concert you don’t have to make a choice, because the brass ensemble of the Basel Symphony offers a bit of everything.

> Works by William Byrd, Johann Sebastian Bach, Jim Parker, Stephen Foster, George Gershwin, Zequinha de Abreu, and Chris Hazell

> In case of bad weather, the concert will not take place.

Free entry to concert

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Brass Serenade

Guided tour

StrawGold
30 June 2019 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Guided tour
StrawGold
30 June 2019, 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Why is a Bavarian dirndl made of African cloths? Moreover, in what way are these cloths still African? Objects, ideas and technologies have been travelling between cultures since time immemorial. Learn more about these fascinating entanglements.

> With Eli Wilhelm

Admission fee

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Museum > History

History

The Ethnographic Committee met for the first time in 1893. Hence the year is listed as the museum’s founding date.

The origins of the museum trace back to the mid-nineteenth century. The “Museum der Stadt Basel” (Basel Municipal Museum) presented in the newly opened Berri building (1849), among other things, Lukas Vischer’s remarkable Mexican collection, making Basel one of the first cities in Europe with an ethnographic collection open to the public.

 

In the early years it was culture-minded members of the Basel upper class who supplied the museum with objects gathered on their journeys across the world. Later, in the course of the professionalization of anthropology, the task of collecting was increasingly left to expert scholars such as Fritz and Paul Sarasin, Felix Speiser, Alfred Bühler and Paul Wirz who significantly extended the range and scope of the museum’s collections.

 

In 1892 the Basel government decided to separate the ethnographic from the historical-antiquarian collection and set up a committee to manage the new collection. The committee met for the first time in the following year, which is why 1893 is listed as the museum’s founding date. But it was only in 1918 that the ethnographic collection was renamed “Museum für Völkerkunde” (Museum of Ethnology). Fritz Sarasin was the first chairman of the collection and director of the museum, respectively.

 

In 1944 the Swiss Federal Council granted the museum’s European department, established in 1904, the title “Schweizerisches Museum für Volkskunde” (Swiss Museum of European Folklife). Henceforth the institution was called “Museum für Völkerkunde und Schweizerisches Museum für Volkskunde”. In 1996 the house received its present name “Museum der Kulturen Basel”.

 

One of the many highlights in the museum’s history was the visit of the Dalai Lama in 2001 for the opening of the exhibition Tibet. Buddha, Gods, Saints, which was shown until 2008. A further milestone was the reopening of the museum in 2011 after extensive refurbishment. It included a reorientation in terms of content and design, an extension and redefinition of the copious courtyard, and a new entrance opening on to the Münsterplatz.

> Architecture
> Collection

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