International Museum Day is marked every year on 18 May. The day aims to raise awareness about the value of museums as means of important cultural exchange, enrichment of cultures, and development of mutual understanding, cooperation and peace among peoples.
According to icom.museum, museums have the power to transform the world around us. Museums make us familiar with our pasts and show us a way to open our minds to discover and build a better future. The annual observance of International Museum Day is coordinated by the International Council of Museums (ICOM) since 1977. The day also marks a unique moment for the international museum community.
International Museum Day History:
International Museum Day was established in 1977 with the adoption of a resolution. The resolution was adopted at the ICOM General Assembly held in Moscow, Russia. The day was designated to 'further unify the creative aspirations and efforts of museums and draw the attention of the world public to their activity'.
International Museum Day Significance:
The day holds a lot of significance as it aims to generate awareness about the important role that museums play in community building, national and international cooperation as well as cultural exchange.
International Museum Day Theme:
Each year, the International Council of Museums come up with a new theme to celebrate the day. The theme for this year's International Museum Day is "The Power of Museums". Museums have the power to transform and foster positive changes in society and the world.
How the day is celebrated
Each year, many countries come forward to celebrate museums and take part in the event. In 2021, as many as 37,000 museums from across the world participated in the event which was celebrated in 158 countries and territories.
These celebrations usually last for a day or a week. Celebrations for International Museum Day include visits to galleries and museums, participating in events and witnessing the exhibits in museums to commemorate the day.