Saving Culture in Disaster, A Presentation by Dr. Richard Kurin of the Smithsonian Institution

Event time: 
Thursday, April 14, 2016 - 4:00pm
Sudler Hall See map
100 Wall Street
New Haven, CT
Event description: 

The 2010 earthquake in Haiti resulted in a tremendous loss of life, and had a devastating impact on the nation’s infrastructure, including its cultural heritage. The Smithsonian led an unprecedented collaborative effort with Haitian, American and international organizations to establish an emergency cultural recovery center, saving some 35,000 paintings, sculptures, murals, and artifacts, and training some 150 Haitians in collection management and conservation. Following this, the Smithsonian led projects in Mali, Egypt, Nepal, Iraq and Syria to save heritage endangered by natural disaster and human conflict. Kurin describes these projects—of contemporary “monuments men and women” in light of varied and sometimes competing governmental, professional and private priorities, interests and objectives, and highlights research, legislative and operational needs to address threatened heritage. The lecture coincides with Smithsonian participation in the Global Colloquium of University Presidents in New Haven and follows his participation with Yale President Peter Salovey in sessions about saving cultural heritage at the World Economic Forum in Davos.