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From the history of the Ethnographic and Popular Art Museum in Baia Mare
The material popular culture and its study, and also the presence of ethnographic objects in the museum, have concerned specialists ever since the beginning of the museum activity in Baia Mare. In 1899, The Baia Mare Museum Association has been founded and its members donated or convinced others to donate different objects that were going to be part of the first collections of the museum. The founders of the Baia Mare museum decided that it should have a few different sections: a library, a history area, an ethnography area and one for the natural sciences; each one of these should have a specific designation. So, the ethnography department was "to carry on studies regarding ethnography, which would reflect people's spirituality, folk art, popular traditions and apparel, their hand made tools, etc." After setting up the museum, in 1904, both the written documents and the kept inventories and photographs of the exhibitions put together during the first part of the XXth century at Baia Mare, prove the existence of numerous ethnographic artifacts within its collections.
Second World War interrupted the museum's activity in Baia Mare. It has been taken on again in 1950, but at that time, the focus was more on the history department. The approval for setting up an ethnography and popular art section only came in 1964. The first one to take on this difficult task was Laura Sârbu. During those first years, they mostly tried to gather as much material as possible and soon they were able to exhibit over 1000 pieces. These people were also very involved in research and there were several campaigns that took place led by the very well known specialist and researcher of popular art, Tancred Banateanu. In 1968, Sabin Sainelic was responsible for the ethnography section of the museum; he was a passionate ethnographyst who dedicated his whole life to the museum in Baia Mare. He managed to find and purchase more than half of the present collection of this museum. Starting with 1971 there was a second specialist that has been employed, Janeta Ciocan. Until the year 2000, part of the ethnography department of the museum, have been Dumitru Pop, Izidor Râpa, Elena Antal, and each of them has had a significant contribution to its development.
1968 was also the beginning of a scientific activity in order to organize all the collections gathered in the museum. All the artifacts were organized according to collections, so that it was obvious what the priorities are in order to complete them. During this time, they also started to exhibit the objects, and they continued to systematically research all the different forms of the popular material culture, especially the ones that could be found in the northern part of Romania . Alongside all these activities, there has also been great attention given to completing the existing collections and getting new ones; this was essential in order to be able to rotate and enrich the exhibitions. As a result, today, the Baia Mare museum has over 7000 pieces, many of which have the precious value of being part of the national thesaurus.
The desire to make it known and understood to others also, all the beauty, originality, richness and the most special artistic value of the popular art, motivated us to try and obtain this location in order to organize a pavilion museum along with an outdoor one. So, there were two specialists who worked on writing a paper for organizing the pavilion museum (Janeta Ciocan) and the outdoor one (Sabin Sainelic). The subjects discussed represented the graduation exam for the completion of the post-University courses, organized through the Minister of Culture, all of which have been positively evaluated. Because of this pursue, the pavilion museum has received the building of the former Summer Theatre. The building went through some major adjustments in order to be adapted to the demands of the new future museum. After all the modifications have been completed, there were about 500 m2 exhibition area, 12 storage rooms, 3 offices and other administrative areas. The most important achievement has been the restoration work shop which was build where the former projection rooms used to be. It has 4 rooms, which are used in order to restore different artifacts made of wood, ceramics, textile fibers or iron. In the basement of the building, the submerging basins were built, in order to work the wood for the constructions that were to be built on Dealul Florilor, one of which is 13 meters long.
|Muzeul de Etnografie şi Artă Populară Baia Mare 2007|