November 27, 2013

Collections Online: motto and aim. Let's do it with 3 Wikipedians in Residence at a time

The pinacoteca room of the Museum.
The Biblioteca Museu Víctor Balaguer (Víctor Balaguer Museum & Library) is located in Vilanova i la Geltrú, a beach town 50 km away from Barcelona. It was founded in 1884 by Víctor Balaguer so as to thank the city for its support during his politician career.


All the paintings exhibited at the museum are now available on Wikimedia Commons thanks to a project initiated by the Museum with the collaboration of Amical Wikimedia to make the museum collection more accessible to a wider audience.
It is said today that everything that can not be found on the Internet does not exist, or at least is not visible. With the intention of leaving this shadow of invisibility behind, the museum has started a second project with Amical Wikimedia to gradually include its artistic and ethnographic collections on Wikimedia Commons.
 Broadly speaking tasks to be carried are Uploading several collections of the museum to Wikimedia Commonsthrough the following steps: painting and sculpture exhibited at the Museum, labeling all acquisitions (categorisation), introduction of other collections on display in the galleries (Egypt collections, Philippines, Pre-Columbian, oriental ceramics, glass, archeology,...) and -if possible- collections kept at the warehouse (painting, sculpture, and other types).

They want to improve Wikipedia's coverage on local artists, creating and / or expanding the entry of artists with work in the collection, prioritizing local ones. They also will expand Wikipedia articles related to the highlights of the collection

Museum publish a "Butlletí" magazine since their 1800s, and the goal is to read it all again an re-use it as Wikipedia references for XIX and XX Century art articles. Contextualizing Knowledge by referencing articles. So far, contemporary art collections has been excluded from the project to avoid copyright issues. We still have plenty of work to do with Public Domain content.

Museum director and team are really committed to free knowledge. They also believe that public collections of a country should be available to everyone, no matter where they live. A tool such as Wikipedia and its sister projects allows them to do so in an environment in constant expansion. From the local reach to a global network. Open your museum and let the global community improve it.

Who and How
To make this transfer of knowledge possible, museum will proudly hosts 3 Wikipedians in Residence at a time: 
* Elisenda Admiral, graduated in Humanities (UAB) and MA in Comparative Studies in Art, Literature and Thought (UPF), 
* Montse Medina, graduated in History (URV), is currently completing a Masters in Cultural Heritage Management (UB) 
* Marina Padilla, that the fourth race of the Degree of Art History (UB).  

They are all emerging heritage professionals and kind of newbies on the wikiworld. They will do this partnership as some practice/scolarship for their formal studies or universities. They have already done more than 300 edits in less than a week, and are received by the Catalan community with warm. We need more women on board! 



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