“AUDIO GUIDE” (Project)

Title of the project: The importance of traditional knowledge of Mongolia in personal and economic development

Name of the organization: The Fine Arts Museum of Zanabazar

Time framework: July 2012 to 2013

The Fine Arts Zanabazar Museum would like to introduce a multilingual audio guide to make the musem`s collection available for visitors who wish to get a deeper understanding of Mongolian history, culture and traditions. We are convinced that this initiative would further enhance our visitors` satisfaction regarding our work. Furthermore, visitors arriving from abroad would get professional information about Mongolian culture and history on their native tounge. Providing a professional guide for laypeople and scholars alike, making sure that they enjoy their time within the museum, we would be able to contribute to spreading our ancient knowledge all around the World.

Besides, involving local schools and institutions we would like to organize workshops in the topic of how traditions can contribute to further develop ourselves and the country. It is essential not only preserving our ancient knowledge but to use it as a development tool in education. We wish to build these workshops into the curriculum training teachers and students alike in the importance of continuous development with not forgetting about our heritage.

In recent years the Museum has been successfully working together with different organizations. Our main partner in this project would be the Centre for Cultural Heritage in Ulan Bator. They would provide the necessary programming and computers to help implementing the project.

The Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands has kindly offered help in finding native English speakers to enable us recording the related materials.

The proposed initiative would take place in the Fine Arts Zanabazar Museum, involving all its exhibition rooms. The start date of the project is January 2013. As planned, the timeframe for implementing the audio guide is six months. During this period we would fully equip the exhibition rooms with the necessary tools and equipments We would also be able to record the related information with involving native language speakers in Mongolian and English languages.

We wish to gain support from the Prince Claus Fund to be able to cover the full expense of the project.

The most significant part of our project is the workshops we would like to provide for schoolchildren and teaching professionals. Through this work that we plan to do regularly and continuously over the next years we will bring up a generation that is aware of their own cultural heritage, its importance in personal and economic development too. One of the main problems in present day Mongolia is the very quickly changed way of life. For this many people turn their back to traditional lifestyle in the hope of finding a new one that is rich and lacks hardship. However, when this new idea of westernized life leaves them disappointed, they are left empty handed. They have abandoned their old life and traditions but the new one refused them. We are convinced that keeping balance between new and old is essential to a healthy way of life. This is what we wish to get through with the help of our programmes.

This initiative will be strengthened with implementing a professional audio guide for all. Due to the relatively low number of staff at times we are not able to provide face to face guide to every visitor. Besides, we know from experience that some people and most children would prefer an audio guide which makes it possible for them to enjoy the collection and learn from it at their own pace. We feel that in case of school groups it is at times difficult to make the guide enjoyable for children while letting the children wondering in the museum freely would arouse their natural curiosity in watching and doing further research or asking questions about their favourite subjects. Our collection covers a very important slice of Mongolian culture and history that can be used as an awareness making tool. An audio guide is a very important tool that helps to catch the attention of the wider public.

An Audio Guide is a basic asset in a museum nowadays. It is an expectation from a leading museum that is the Fine Arts Zanabazar Museum in Mongolia. In recent years it became an expectation from our visitors too to have access to an audio guide that gives the full introduction into the work and collection of our Museum.

As the Prince Claus Fund actively supports initiatives which aim to improve cultural development our project promoted the Prince Claus Fund`s work and objections. Expected Results (please include as much relevant information as possible)

Within the project we wish to introduce 80 audio guides in our exhibition rooms.

Elementary and secondary schools in Ulan Bator focusing on disadvantaged areas and children – school names to be negotiated.

With introducing the audio guides we expect to raise the curiosity of our community. With these tools everyone can discover the collection at their own pace without being distracted by anyone but still getting professional information on Mongolian arts and history. As audience we would like to focus on the youth with the help of teachers and education professionals. As a result we expect to raise awareness of our traditions and its importance in our everyday life and development. We would like to promote our programmes in most schools in Ulan Bator, but focusing on the less advantages areas on the city.

Publications will involve teaching materials for our workshops and handouts for children. Translation of the audio guide will happen with the help of professional native language speakers, proofread by experts in the topic of Mongolian arts and history. 

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