Articoli taggati con ‘Ecclesiastical Museums’

Tafterjournal n. 99 - MARZO APRILE 2018

Ecclesiastical Museums: an important opportunity for cultural networks and territories

di Alfonso Casalini

In the wide framework of cultural resources present on a territory, there are still instruments and assets that, for multiple reasons, do not enter in traditional mixed offer of a city or a region. Ecclesiastical cultural heritage is often part of the structures that public administrators let slip. For Italy, it seems like paradoxically. While an important part of the art history and of cultural heritage is related to the history of Church, and while there are almost no cultural itineraries that do not include an ecclesiastical reference, the so-called “ecclesiastical museums” are still a marginal part of the policies realized to improve cultural, social and economic growth of our territories. In this article, we will discuss both the theoretical implication and the concrete opportunities that the empowerment of the ecclesiastical museums could generate for Italian territories, in terms of touristic, cultural and spiritual offer. As occur for “secular” ones, the ecclesiastical museum expresses a set of differentiated values that we need to take into account: the economic and social values are, therefore, specific consequences of the intrinsic cultural and historical values represented by the artworks that the museums store and protect. Furthermore, ecclesiastical museums present an aspect that every kind of consideration needs to take into account: the relevance of the spiritual and religious values and the role of the artworks as an important tessera in the wider mosaic of the evangelization function. The article will therefore discuss three main aspects of the Italian ecclesiastical museums: first chapter, “From religious to spiritual” will briefly deal with the theoretical dimension of the role and the relevance of ecclesiastical collections and their inclusion in a broader cultural dimension. The second chapter “Ecclesiastical Museums and services” will analyze services and main characteristics shown by ecclesiastical museums in Italy. Third section will finally introduce the potentiality of the introduction of ecclesiastical museums in different networks, considering the recent growth of cultural and spiritual products or services.

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Tafterjournal n. 94 - MAGGIO GIUGNO 2017

Ecclesiastical Tourism and the Paradox of Happiness

di Manfred J. Holler

At the first glance the following two contributions look rather diverse – hardly related. Alfonso Casalini writes on the role of catholic and religious cultural heritage and the need for the implementation of modern management tools, especially in the organization of ecclesiastical museums. Timo Airaksinen writes on “Desire and the Socratic Paradox of Happiness” – a philosophic paper as its title clearly indicates. It is triggered by the observation that a lucky person will prefer his good circumstances regardless of the fact that he is and remains unhappy – which is in contrast, but not necessarily in contradiction, of Socrates’ dictum that a virtuous person is always happy, regardless of his circumstances. Are desire and desiring the keys to unlock this paradox? Airaksinen’s desire theory of happiness says that you are gratified and happy when you are able to satisfy your desires. As a consequence, he concludes, “life’s conditions are crucial to the quality and value of happiness.” Alfonso Casalini would argue that, for many people, religion and ecclesiastical culture are essential dimensions of their life’s conditions. He points out that there are between 300 and 330 million religious tourists, yearly, who generate an estimated turnover of 18 billion dollars worldwide. Do these numbers reflect a desire? Casalini’s assumption is that the “Religious Cultural Institutions” of the Catholic Church are called upon to contribute to satisfy these desires – and his claim is that this has to be done in an efficient way. A precondition is the application of modern management technics. He focuses on ecclesiastical museums to illustrate the problem and demonstrate the need for reforms: “a more economic (but not necessarily monetary) approach is needed.” There are still too many of these “ante-management” museums which “are devoid of website, do not have a social network activity and do not have revenues (or do not indicate them).”

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Tafterjournal n. 94 - MAGGIO GIUGNO 2017

The role of Catholic and Religious Cultural Heritage in an ambiguous era.

di Alfonso Casalini

Today, we live in an ambiguous era. This is true under almost all the perspective we want to assume, but it is particularly true when we analyze the relationship with the religious and spiritual aspects. On the one hand we live in a laic world, characterized for a technological and web-based development. On the other hand, religious wars are increasing, and the terroristic attacks are more and more frequent. In this context, Religious Cultural Heritage is called to play not only a religious role (representing the values of a specific faith) but it is called to play a cultural activity (representing cultural relevance of the spiritual sphere of the humankind). It is crucial, in this difficult and fragile equilibrium, for Religious Cultural Institutions, to adopt management criteria in order to run this peculiar institutions with efficiency and efficacy. The article will provide an overview of the main fields in which a more economic (but not necessarily monetary) approach is needed, with a specific focus on catholic cultural institutions.

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