NETHERLANDS Guidelines on dealing with religious objects

Last month Marc de Beyer, curator at Museum Catharijneconvent in Utrecht, the Netherlands, and project leader of the Guidelines on Ways of Dealing with Religious Objects, visited UQÀM and Laval University in Québec in Canada. At the invitation of FRH member professor Luc Noppen, De Beyer gave two lectures about the Guidelines.

The Guidelines consist of two instruments:

  • the Roadmap for Reusing and Deaccessioning Religious Object, which describes procedures that owners can use for deaccessioning religious objects, and
  • the Religious Objects Assessment Guide, which helps owners of churches to assess the cultural value of objects.

The Guidelines were devised at the initiative of the museum, in close cooperation with the Dutch Churches and national heritage agencies. Recently an English translation of these Dutch Guidelines was published.

Luc Noppen plays a key role in Québec in dealing with religious heritage. De Beyer and Noppen met in Utrecht in 2010 at the initiative of FRH board member Lilian Grootswagers, where they visited several examples of re-used churches. De Beyer was invited to Québec with the intention to exchange ideas concerning the movable religious heritage, which is in great jeopardy. De Beyer’s lectures on the Guidelines were the starting point of valuable discussions on the possible solutions to preserving and deaccessiong religious objects.

The Guidelines will be launched at the Venice congress in November. Copies are available for all participant of the congress. For further information please visit the website www.GuidelinesReligiousObjects.com.