Museums that listen – for greater horizontality @Uliège


Educational and cultural institutions are often guided by the idea of transmission, in a generally vertical perspective from “the one who knows” to “the one who doesn’t”. Let’s try to break this pattern!

The aim of this project is to experiment with listening strategies at the University of Liège, through its Museum and Cultural Centre, in order to identify and make the most of the knowledge and experience of people who do not usually visit museums.

The aim will be to welcome, listen to and establish a dialogue that will enable participants to find out about what museums and the University are doing, to compare this work with their own realities, their prior knowledge, their practices for assigning values and passing on memories, to create relationships (which may be critical or even rejectionist), and to feel safe to put forward their thoughts and make proposals for the PM&C or, more broadly, for the University.

The pilot project will involve setting up groups of around 10-12 participants. From September to December 2023, in weekly meetings, initially stimulated by a personal object brought to the group, they will take part in workshops aimed at giving meaning to concepts such as :

  • tangible and intangible heritage
  • assigning value to objects
  • the selection of what is exhibited in museums: who chooses?
  • What is represented or absent? According to what criteria? Can they be criticised?
  • the relationship between memory, power and silence
    the heritage that speaks to us and the museums we would like to visit.

Participants will research the museums and collections that form part of the PM&C and identify the relationships with the reference collection created for the project, by similarity, contrast or absence.
This research will be carried out firstly by accessing available data and, secondly, by visiting museums.

Between September and December 2023, each group will be invited to prepare proposals for the PM&C and the University on how they would feel more welcome and/or represented.

In addition, at the end of the workshop, each participant will be invited to a ‘feedback’ activity. This will take the form of either a mini-exhibition or a performance of the texts in various forms (written, declaimed, sung, rapped, etc.) or any other means suggested by the participants. This session will be open to the public and participants will be able to invite their family and friends.

Registration closes on 25 August.

For more information on our project, click on the following link: