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“What can museums do in the face of war?”

Friday 1 December - 11.30-13.00 – “What can museums do in the face of war?”. 

Updated on 27/11/2023

2 min

Cooperation between museums in Ukraine and a number of European countries was decisive in saving and preserving the artworks of Ukrainian museum institutions as well as in opening a new space for teams to work and collaborate. The initiatives were multiplied and the collaborative network was enhanced. In the context of a war that is unfolding on the longer term, what are the needs of Ukrainian museums today? What resources can European establishments mobilise to answer these needs? More broadly, what responsibility do they face when, on European soil, museums and the heritage they enclose become subject to such threats? 

Moderator: Dr. Rūta Kačkutė, Director of the Lithuanian National Museum 


Kateryna Chuyeva
Kateryna Chuyeva
Expert on museum and cultural heritage management and former Deputy Minister of Culture and Information (Ukraine)
From September 2021 until August 2023, Kateryna Chuyeva was the Deputy Minister of Culture and Information Policy of Ukraine, Deputy Chair of the National Commission for UNESCO Affairs (ex officio). She worked with the Varvara Khanenko National Museum of Arts in Kyiv (1998-2021), evolving from technician up to the Director General in 2018-2021 and curating multiple exhibitions. She has been a member of the supervisory Board of the Ukrainian Institute (ever since 2021) and of the Ukrainian Cultural Fund (2020-2021). In 2014, she co-founded the NGO Maidan Museum and took part in the Maidan Museum Initiative (now - the National Memorial to the Heavenly Hundred Heroes and Revolution of Dignity Museum). She is a board member of the International Council of Museums (ICOM) (since 2008), of ICOM Ukraine (Board member from 2012-2019, President from 2019-2021), of the International Council on Monuments and Sites (since 2011), and of the International Committee of Memorial Museums of Victims of Public Crimes (ICMEMO).
Mareike Dittmer
Mareike Dittmer
Director of Public Engagement at TBA21 (Spain)
Mareike Dittmer is Director of public engagement at TBA21 Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary, a leading international art and advocacy foundation created in 2002 by the philanthropist and collector Francesca Thyssen-Bornemisza. With her background in transdisciplinary collaborations and art publishing, Mareike is building public support for TBA21's and TBA21–Academy's mission and vision. Weaving a shared narrative across the constellations and collaborations of TBA21 she believes in art’s transformative potential within societies and ecosystems. From 2018 to 2020 Mareike was the director of Art Stations Foundation CH / Muzeum Susch, where she conceived and chaired the annual transdisciplinary forum Disputaziuns Susch. From 2016 to 2018, together with Julieta Aranda, she chaired the 9th Futurological Congress convening in Warsaw, Tel Aviv and Munich. Until 2018 Mareike was the associate publisher of frieze magazine and co-founder of the magazine’s Berlin office which she co-headed with Jörg Heiser since 2001. Since 2019, Mareike is also a lecturer in the BFA at ZHdK, the Zurich art academy.
Maximilien Durand
Maximilien Durand
Director of the Department of Byzantine and Eastern Christian Arts at Musée du Louvre (France)
Born in 1976, Maximilien Durand is a graduate of the Ecole du Louvre and holds a Master of Advanced Study in hagiographic texts from the Louvre's Department of Egyptian Antiquities (Ecole Pratique des Hautes Études). From 2007 to 2008, he was scientific director of the NGO "Patrimoine sans frontières", before joining the Musée des Arts Décoratifs in Paris as head of conservation and restoration from 2008 to 2011. Director of the Musée des Tissus and the Musée des Arts Décoratifs in Lyon from 2011 to 2017, then Head of Conservation at Christian Dior Couture from 2018 to 2019, since January 2021 he has been Deputy Director of Collections and Research at Paris Musées and Curator of the Paris Catacombs. A teacher at the Ecole du Louvre and the author of numerous publications, Maximilien Durand has organised more than twenty-five exhibitions (including "Antinoë, à la vie, à la mode visions d’élégance dans les solitudes" at the Musée des Tissus in Lyon in 2013/2014). He has also been vice-president of the Centre International d'Étude des Textiles Anciens (CIETA) and president of the International Association for the Study of the Silk Roads Textiles. Additionally, he has led international projects, in particular in regions covered by the regional focus of the future Louvre department – Albania, Kosovo, Macedonia, Serbia, Belarus and Russia – on the conservation, restoration and promotion of the heritage of Orthodox communities in the Byzantine tradition. He also completed a scientific study of the collection of Byzantine and Coptic textiles at the Lloyd Cotsen Foundation in Los Angeles.
Arunas Gelunas
Arunas Gelunas
Director General of the Lithuanian National Museum of Art (Lithuania)
Arūnas Gelūnas has been Director General of the Lithuanian National Museum of Art since 2019. From 2016 to 2019, he was a member of The Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania, chairman of the French-Lithuanian Friendship Group and vice-chairman of the European Affairs Committee. He resigned from his parliamentary position in 2019 to take up the post of director of the National Museum of Arts, which oversees 9 museums in Lithuania, as well as a major art restoration centre. Arūnas Gelūnas was also Lithuania's Minister of Culture during the governance of Andrius Kubilius between 2010 and 2012 (curators) followed by an engagement as Lithuania's Permanent Representative to UNESCO from 2012 to 2016. Arūnas Gelūnas began his career as a painter before organising several exhibitions of paintings in Lithuania as well as in France and Japan. In 2001, he defended his thesis at Vytautas Magnus University in Kaunas devoted to the new paradigm of order in the philosophy of Nishida and Merleau-Ponty. Between 2004 and 2010, he was vice-rector of the Vilnius Academy of Fine Arts.
Bachaar Tarabay
Bachaar Tarabay
Scientific Project Manager, Iconem (France)
Bachaar, a graduate in Architecture and Heritage from the École Nationale Supérieure d’Architecture de Paris Belleville (ENSA-PB) in July 2018, has been serving as the Head of Scientific Projects at ICONEM since July 2022. Currently, he oversees scientific projects in Iraq, Yemen, Lebanon, KSA, Oman, Syria, and others. His introduction to photogrammetry at Parrot AirSupport provided him with a new perspective on heritage, allowing him to contribute to projects involving internationally renowned monuments such as Mont Saint-Michel. His journey with ICONEM began with a photogrammetric study of the area affected by the 2020 explosion at the port of Beirut, where he collaborated with UNESCO.
L'institut français, LAB