Preliminary Program

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Preliminary Program:

► Sunday, April 14

► Monday, April 15

► Tuesday, April 16

PDFs for Download:

► CMA 2019 General Information

► CMA 2019 Call for Papers Submission form

► CMA 2019 Exhibitor and Sponsorship Information

► CMA 2019 Exhibitors List and Expo Floor Plan

► CMA 2019 Delegate Kit Insertion Program


Wednesday, April 17


7 a.m. – 2 p.m.



7 – 8:30 a.m.

Breakfast with Exhibitors


8:30 – 9:15 a.m.

Keynote Address

Kent Monkman Portrait

Kent Monkman, Canadian Artist

9:15 – 9:45 a.m.

In Conversation with…

Kent Monkman and Josh Basseches, Director and CEO, Royal Ontario Museum


9:45 – 10:15 a.m.

Networking Break with Exhibitors


10 – 11:45 a.m.

Meeting of the Fellows

By invitation only!


10:15 – 11:30 a.m.

Concurrent Educational Sessions


XIII. The Three R's — Risk, Rescue and Recovery

Moderator: Robert Stephen, Art Gallery of Burlington

Panelists: Janine Pigozzo, Science North; Joanne Orr, Royal British Columbia Museum; Colin Robertson, Ecclesiastical Insurance

Emergency disaster preparedness is often on our minds or put to the back of our minds. How do you successfully recover from a devastating fire, a natural disaster or even a terrorist attack? The effective management of a museum is all about balancing risks, whether to people, the objects, buildings, trading activities or information data. Panelists share their firsthand experiences with recent disasters, discussing how the resulting trauma affected museum staff, how they successfully moved forward into recovery mode and eventually back to business as ‘normal’. This session goes far beyond identifying the tools you need to complete insurance claims. You'll leave being better prepared when disaster strikes!


XIV. Community Engaged Research

Moderator: Leah Best, Royal British Columbia Museum

Panelists: J’net Ayayqwayaksheelth, Royal Ontario Museum; Sarah Beam-Borg, Aga Khan Museum; Janet MacDonald, Royal British Columbia Museum

How important is community research (CER)? According to the University of Victoria's Office of Community Research, it takes on average eight years to establish trusting relationships that result in authentic collaborations with communities. How committed are museums to the investment of resources that are needed to be truly engaged? What can we do to initiate knowledge exchange and introduce experiences into research activities? From community advisory committees, to new fieldwork practices and introducing changes to funding, planning and communication frameworks, many institutions are redefining their research practices. This session will share a variety of experiences and innovative approaches used by four institutions and work with attendees to build their capacity for audience engagement by identifying a CER project and developing a knowledge exchange plan that is appropriately engaged and resourced for best results.


XV. Risks to Collections from Non-Traditional Events and from Display in Non-Traditional Spaces: Can They be Effectively Managed?

Moderator: Jane Sirois, Canadian Conservation Institute

Panelists: Irene Karsten, Canadian Conservation Institute; Helen Coxon and Connie MacDonald, Royal Ontario Museum; Heather Pigat, University of Toronto

Heritage professionals are increasingly being pressured to engage in non-traditional display of collections and host non-traditional events in museum spaces in order to inspire new audiences and supplement tight budgets. Such activities often raise concerns among collections staff since there is a chance for collection objects to be damaged. Although such activities are not entirely new, we have no systematic analysis of the magnitude of associated risks or the difference in risk from traditional use of museum objects and spaces. This panel will present the experience of institutions who are engaging in a variety of non-traditional use of collections and galleries and who are effectively managing the associated risks. The discussion will also highlight new research being undertaken at the Canadian Conservation Institute to assess these risks and develop tools to facilitate decision making by heritage professionals wishing to increase access to collections in non-traditional contexts.


XVI. Social Intervention, Wellness and Improving Health Through Art at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts: What Now, What’s Next?

Moderator: Kathleen Brown, Lord Cultural Resources

Panelists: Marilyn Lajeunesse and Stephen Legari, Montreal Museum of Fine Art

In 2019, the MMFA will be celebrating 20 years of its award-winning educational program Sharing the Museum. This community outreach initiative originally sought to increase the Museum's audiences through free educational and creative activities. Over the past two decades, the program has developed hundreds of co-created, made-to-measure projects and has expanded the wellness division resulting in a new one involving art therapy. This session discusses the program’s evolution, responding and working with the most vulnerable in society. The challenges and rewards in developing these services to our community in an inclusive and holistic way will be presented. Project illustrations will be drawn from a sample of partnerships with non-profit community organizations and health and social service agencies. Finally, the integrated art therapy program will be described including the staffing of an art therapist, the community open studio — The Art Hive, therapy groups, internships and research collaborations. Participants will leave with the tools needed to begin a similar program.


XVII. Betas and Beyond: Challenging the Model of Community Engagement with Online Collections

Moderator: Lisa Pottie, McMichael Canadian Art Collection

Panelists: William Huffman, Dorset Fine Arts; Richard Laurin, McMichael Canadian Art Collection

Museums are digitizing their collections to make their objects accessible to audiences near and far. However, the digital presence of these collections remains almost entirely under the control of the institution. As the custodians of 100,000 artworks from the Cape Dorset Archive, the McMichael’s Inik Ilagiit (rough translation: place for extended family) project is a collection digitization project that incorporates community voices in framing the collection and innovative features allowing site users to create their own virtual exhibitions. By partnering with the West Baffin Eskimo Coop, Dorset Fine Arts, Kenojuak Cultural Centre and the Inuit Art Foundation, Inik Ilagiit represents a project where various levels of digital interpretation of the collection creates a platform to showcase Indigenous insight into a community’s artistic heritage through virtual exhibitions. This panel will discuss how such partnerships have shaped the project’s goals, website development and how we envision the creation of virtual exhibitions in the coming years and how your institution could explore similar partnerships.


XVIII. Case Studies Part II

Facilitator: Rebecca Frerotte, Lord Cultural Resources


A. Lighting Design and the Technical Challenges Ahead

Presenter: Alexandre Tougas, LightFactor Lighting Design

This case study presents both the technical and design sides with respect to lighting. With the advent of new LED technologies and the increasing difficulty in obtaining so-called "traditional" lighting, what are the challenges facing museums when renewing their current lighting inventory? Which technology best suits your needs? What characteristics should you ask for and what are the most important specs to look for? Exhibition lighting design will be discussed in the second part of the discussion. What are the lighting design tips? What should you think about when you begin to create an exhibition lighting design? How do you view an exhibition on the lighting narrative side? Participants will leave with increased knowledge and more adequately understand the multitude of products available, the issues they face and how to respond to them.


B. Understanding Donor Motivations

Presenter: Joanna Szczepanski, Canterbury Museum, New Zealand

Passive acquisitions make up a significant portion of museum collections yet very little is known about why people choose to donate their objects to museums. Traditionally prestige and legacy building have been the main motivators. However, more recent research indicates that people instead feel a sense of responsibility for preserving objects from the past but are either uninterested or not able to carry on that responsibility themselves. Interestingly, some people are also motivated to donate objects following a memorable museum experience. In this way, the objects become tangible evidence of the Museum’s impact on the individual. This case study seeks to shift the thinking around passive acquisition from a nuisance to an indicator of a heathy relationship with the museum’s community. It also looks at other ways of addressing donor needs which do not involve accepting the object for the collection.


C. Off the Pedestal? Reconnecting the “Masterwork”

Presenters: Karen Duffek, UBC Museum of Anthropology and Jordan Wilson, Musqueam, Doctoral Student at NYU

How do you address the collision of Indigenous knowledge and museum knowledge that often lies at the centre of institutional practice? This case study shares the process of critical questioning and changing directions as MoA worked with Indigenous community members responding in diverse ways to historical collections for the exhibition In a Different Light: Reflecting on Northwest Coast Art. This was the inaugural exhibition in MoA’s new Gallery of Northwest Coast Masterworks—yes, ‘masterworks,’ a fraught category within the history of changing ideas about art. You will hear how curators and participants alike grappled with the challenges posed by this project in a context of reconnection and reclamation.


D. Comic Books, Community and Curating: What’s the Connection?

Presenter: Tyler J. Stewart, Independent Curator

Looking to employ more engaging and dynamic tactics and techniques for your exhibitions? This case study examines how, by putting the community at the heart of exhibition content development, it is possible to not only engage new contributors but develop a new demographic of visitors to your institution. Through crowd-sourcing local stories, From Pianos to Power Chords, a temporary exhibition at the Galt Museum & Archives, the deep knowledge of music aficionados engaged individuals that hadn’t typically visited the museum. But this was just the first step — by then transforming the exhibition into a comic book format, this made the idea of the 'exhibition catalogue' much more relevant to everyone involved. Selling hundreds of copies when it was launched, it kept participants engaged and connected to the content, creating a longer-lasting impact.


11:45 a.m. – 12:45 p.m.

Lunch with Exhibitors


1 – 1:45 p.m.

Fellows Lecture

The Honourable Elizabeth Dowdeswell, Lieutenant Governor of Ontario

Kindly supported by: Yosef Wosk


Special Presentations


1:45 – 2 p.m.

Ice Cream Break

Kindly supported by:

  Pacart Logo


2 – 3 p.m.

Concurrent Educational Sessions


XIX. Canadian Collections Care Survey

Moderator: Kenza Dufourmantelle, Canadian Conservation Institute

Panelists: Simon Lambert, Canadian Conservation Institute; Cindy Colford, Manitoba Museum; Marie Lalonde, Ontario Museums Association; Jessica MacLean, Aanischaaukamikw Cree Cultural Institute

Until recently, there existed little data about the state of collections care in Canada to indicate the museum sector's potential to use collections to inspire and engage communities. The first Canadian Collections Care Survey was launched in May 2018 through a special partnership between the Canadian Association for Conservation of Cultural Property (CAC-ACCR) and the Canadian Association of Professional Conservators (CAPC-ACRP), in collaboration with the Canadian Museums Association (CMA) and 17 other associate partners. Areas of focus included the human, financial and material resources available to support collections care; the existence of specific policies and procedures (e.g. deaccessioning, digital preservation); identification of the major threats to collections (e.g. building condition, flood and fire exposure); collection access and use; as well as particular concerns relating to indigenous materials. This session includes a discussion of the survey results and of how this data can be successfully used as we move forward.


XX. Driven to Abstraction: How Museums are Favouring Abstract Ideas Over Cold Hard Facts

Moderator: Vivianne Gosselin, Museum of Vancouver

Panelists: Geneviève Angio-Morneau, GSM Project; Tracy Calogheros, Exploration Place; Ken Ross, Bank of Canada Museum

Recent years have seen the world’s leading museums shift away from acting as authoritative keepers of facts in favour of becoming places of conversation, discussion, debate and ideas. The result can be a more democratic presentation of history, science, art or other subjects; one that presents multiple perspectives and invites discussion and reflection in a way that is inclusive of visitors of all backgrounds, demographics and perspectives. But what does this mean for curatorial and interpretive teams? How can museums, which for so long have been the collectors of objects, the keepers of evidence, begin to address abstract ideas? What is the changing role of a museum in a world where discussion takes precedence? What are the emerging trends and how can museums continue to ensure relevancy with the communities we serve? In this panel, three leading museum professionals speak to this shift, sharing case studies of projects driven by ideas, the challenges that came with this work and thoughts on how institutions can implement this kind of thinking successfully.


XXI. The Future of Conservation Teaching and Learning in Museum Studies: ICCROM — Athabasca University Experience

Moderator: Veronica Thompson, Athabasca University

Panelists: Shabnam Inanloo Dailoo, Athabasca University; Krassimira Frangova, Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, School of Conservation, Denmark

What training and skills development opportunities are available to museums professionals? What does the future of conservation education look like? This panel will discuss a joint project between ICCROM and Athabasca University’s Heritage Resources Management Program that explored learning and teaching conservation in-person and online. Starting from interdisciplinary and sharing core principles of the disciplines involved in the field of conservation, ICCROM’s International Summer School on Communication and Teaching Skills in Conservation and Science focuses on rethinking traditional and exploring alternative teaching and learning modalities, as well as critical thinking as a prerogative in conservation education. The project has connected international professionals and educators who will train the future conservators. The panelists will also discuss different approaches to conservation education at their home institutions and connections with this project and how a similar program could be of help to your own institution.


XXII. Case Studies Part III

Facilitator: Rebecca Frerotte, Lord Cultural Resources


A. “Memory is the Scribe of the Soul”: Diving into Collection, Examining the Notions Memory and Forgetting

Presenter: Lisa Marie Mercier, Brock University

In 2007, an article was published in the New York Times entitled Folly’s Antidote — History is to a nation what memory is to the individual. This case study will explore the role of objects in tandem with the history of the ‘memory-keeping’ institution. By objectively understanding museum collections from varying perspectives, one can successfully identify how the assemblage of items may be more representative of assorted historiographies. The case study will reveal that an objective observation of a museum’s collection will inevitably lead to the discovery of histories not yet identified.


B. Spatial Museology: A New Approach to Exhibition Conceptualization

Presenter: Dominique Gélinas, New Brunswick Museum

How do you help to define and structure the highest quality of visitor experience? Based on three projects that she was project manager of, Dominique will share with attendees how the progressive integration of technologies can affect the exhibition conceptualization process. Based on her experiences, she offers museums a new approach using formulas that she refers to as spatial museology.


3:15 – 4:15 p.m.

Keynote and Conference Closing

Gail Lord Portrait

Gail Lord, Lord Cultural Resources

The Museums of the Future and the Future of Museums

In the final keynote address of the conference, Gail wraps up the conference's findings and provides a glimpse of What's Next? There are at least two museums in the world that have assumed the name "Museum of the Future". But the 'future of museums,' the theme of this conference, is a very different matter. Are we confident that museums have a future? What can we as museum professionals do in the present moment to ensure that museums have a future?

Kindly supported by:

  CMIP Logo



5 – 7:15 p.m.

CMA Awards Ceremony and Reception


Join the CMA Board and your colleagues from across Canada for a celebration recognizing the award winners! Presentations will include the CMA Awards of Outstanding Achievement, CMA Awards of Distinguished Service, the Museum Volunteer Award and ICOM Canada’s International Achievement Award. The ceremony will be followed by a Cocktail Reception.

Fee: FREE! Included in basic and all-inclusive registration fee! Additional tickets for guests available at: $35.


7:30 p.m.

Closing Gala Dinner — It’s a Wrap!


As the conference comes to an end, celebrate CMA 2019 with friends, colleagues and new acquaintances! Experience a special evening of culture, food and entertainment.

Fee: Included in basic and all-inclusive registration fee! Includes dinner, dancing to the sounds of entertainment specialist Blake Belcher and wine with dinner followed by a cash bar. Additional tickets for guests available at: $135.

Kindly supported by:

  EOS logo