Posted by: BM ITP | August 27, 2014

ITP Diary 24th August O’bour Hashash

24 August, Sunday 9:00 AM – 12:00PM

 Another sunny Sunday in beautiful London just started as the birds allowed me to sleep this time, finally! I rushed to do my morning Arabic coffee pot that is my eternal friend, and I was thinking of how the exciting day ahead is going to be. It first started when my friend, who arrived from Palestine yesterday night, came to meet me at the Schafer house; I took her around and we both headed directly to oxford street for quick shopping, then I left her and met Haajra at the Barbican Center to see that Fashion show Exhibition.. !!!

 I used to watch fashion shows on TV to have an overview about the latest fine amazing trends in the fashion world, but to see the exhibition of Jean Paul Gaultier’s is something completely different and it is really out of this world. It brings out all these amazing garments, cuts, details of those designs in a really mesmerizing way. Adding to that, they have custom-made mannequins whose faces talk to the audience. They used overhead projectors to project images of real faces on the mannequins, so that the still mannequins have now come to life, with all the facial expressions; their lips moving along with the sound accompanying it, blinking eyes etc…

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Technology is used again very smartly in an art exhibition; it simply was an amazing experience to witness such a show. Tomorrow is the last day for anyone of you who is interested to see this worthwhile exhibition, please see the following link:

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Then I had to run to see the TATE Britain, where I made it 40 minutes before its closing hour, but had the chance to have a quick look at part of the British art collection. I was happy to see some of the most amazing classical oil paints on canvas for various well-known artists from the past centuries, I was also able to see the Phyllida Barlow large scale installations which were really remarkable as she uses cheap used materials in her huge sculptures and that is also worth seeing.  

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After that I was too exhausted and wanted just to go HOME to “Schafer House” and lay on my bed for some time, and then start working on my research. I had a relaxing evening in my room, thinking of how beautiful London is and how much I am going to miss it, especially the (LOOK LEFT- LOOK RIGHT) signs that first captured my attention, and new bicycle sidewalks prepared for bicycle riders. Those 3 weeks have passed by really quickly, and little time is left for us to be back to our normal lives…! Hoping that the remaining days will be as exciting and wondrous as all the previous days!!

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O’bour Hashash / Palestine



Posted by: BM ITP | August 27, 2014

ITP Diary 21st August 2014 : Rhea Dagher

I find it very hard to succinctly write about a whole day spent at the Horniman Museum; there are a lot of interesting issues that one could tackle.

To start with, we were all divided into three groups, and each  group had a 30 minutes tour in the three main galleries of the museum, i.e.: the musical instruments gallery, the anthropology gallery and the “Extremes” exhibition. After that, we were given the choice to tour with either one of the following departments; the Learning Department, the Exhibitions Department, the Aquarium, or the Conservation Laboratory.

I will not describe each one of the galleries with their contents, because I’m sure that you have absorbed all that needed to be absorbed and you wouldn’t want to hear the same things twice. Instead, I will try and talk about some of the things that struck me while touring this incredibly mesmerizing place, and perhaps give some food for thoughts.

I couldn’t help but compare the Horniman museum to the British Museum, and in turn to my home institution. Comparisons are always enlightening, and one gets to observe how museums adapt to the needs of a certain context, herein the society and/or community surrounding it and their respective history.

The Horniman Museum is firstly and foremostly a local family attraction. I felt that it was more communal and grassroots than the international hub that the BM is. One factor that gives it this facet certainly is its geographical location- away from the centre of London. Perhaps another factor is the way the building is architecturally integrated into the landscape, with the green areas surrounding it that provide a relaxing space that attracts families.

a beautiful corner of the horniman museum.

a beautiful corner of the horniman museum.

a beautiful corner of the horniman museum.

a beautiful corner of the horniman museum.

And so, it being smaller and more grassroot than the BM but bigger than the museum I work at, made it in a way easier for me to relate a few things in my mind about how we could better manage our Ethnography Museum, and also gave me a few personal insights. For instance, I thought that they had a very interesting and unique way of displaying their anthropology collection in the Centenary Gallery; it is not about individual world cultures categorized geographically or thematically. The gallery instead gives a broad idea about the history of the collection itself and of how it had been gathered- it portrays a general history of anthropology. More specifically, it depicts the history of anthropology through the eyes of various people who have across the years collected souvenirs and objects from specific cultures and brought them to the museum.

I should also mention how interesting it was to see the different creative and interactive ways that the museum has adopted in its displays; the gardens and playgrounds with outdoor objects or plants that relate to the collection they have, the different technologies and hands-on activities that they offer etc… 

 little Jana playing

little Jana playing

Finally, I chose to go discover the Aquarium and what hides behind its scenes. I realized that throughout the career path I intend to take, I might never come across the opportunity to have a special tour of such a department. All I can say is that it was so remarkable. On one hand, the work that aquarium curators need to do greatly differs from what I do. On the other hand, the scientific research that comes out of it is very interesting.  Here are some photos of my visit since I have long passed the word limit.

australian jellyfish in aquarium

Australian jellyfish in aquarium



handling amphibians in the research lab


Rhea Dagher / Lebanon 

Posted by: BM ITP | August 22, 2014

ITP Diary 20th August 2014: Marwa Eid

 A Warm Day in Petrie Museum

Today, I enjoyed visiting Petrie Museum with Anna Stevens. The museum wasn’t far from Schafer House, so we walked to get there. At the Petrie Museum I met a wonderful team, they were very friendly and helpful. Tracey Golding introduced the museum and its history to the ITP 2014 team. The museum is located at one a UCL buildings and it is a small place but contains a very important collection. We started the tour inside the museum with Jan Picron and Dr. Alice Stevenson, showed us the Petrie’s old letters and notebooks.

001 The great Proof Petrie

The Great Proof – Petrie Museum

002 Petrie's Letters

Petrie’s letters

I am interested to know more information about such a great person, like PETRIE, who carried out a lot of excavation in Egypt. Debbie Challis explains the workshops and events that are held at the museum and this was very close to my work at the Egyptian Museum in Egypt.

Later at the day Dr. Jan invited us to have lunch and this was a really nice lunch.

After that Dr. Margret Serpico, explained the 3D virtual exhibits, which is one of the most important departments at the museum that allowed us to understand the collections in a wonderful and easy way.

After an exciting, useful tour and a warmly welcome by  the Petrie Museum team work we moved to Grant Museum of Zoology with Ed Connolly and we spent  a good time there and got the chance to see  new collections. 

With a skeleton  at Zoology museum

With a skeleton at Zoology museum

005 Zoology museum

Zoology museum

Finally, I would like to thank the Petrie Museum team specially Dr. Margret and Dr. Jan who gave me a very nice souvenir which will make me remember the place everyday.

A souvenir from Petrie museum team

A souvenir from Petrie Museum team

Marwa Abdel Fattah / Egypt

Curator, Education Department, Egyptian Museum

Posted by: BM ITP | August 22, 2014

ITP Diary 17th August 2014: Balsam Shakal

Hello everyone,

Today it is my day, it is also a weekend. I can say that it was a lovely day, I had good rest after having an exciting and long days at the ITP program this week. I woke up at twelve o’clock at midday and had a shower. The warm water refreshed me and made me think of a hot Sudanese meal, for that I went out for grocery shopping and I count myself  as a very lucky person, as I did not have to go far away because the shops are very close to Schafer house where we are staying.

I did find a very good variety of vegetables, and it was an enjoyable short shopping.

Since I grew up as half vegetarian I cooked a very delicious dish containing mixed vegetables with Sudanese been nuts paste. Besides to that I prepared fruit salad.

Later at the day I did search for some different topics related to my   exhibition project on the first day of September. It is really something very hard to do and I hope I will succeed in it. 

On this weekend there was a lot of time for me to resume to my favourite activities, such as reading. I also got the chance to remember the past days within the last week in the ITP to evaluate it and think for the future depending on the results. 

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Thank you all.

Balsam Shakal / Sudan



After having seen the Ancient lives new discoveries exhibition in the morning and spending some time with the curators who have conceived and developed it, the participants were invited to a marketing workshop in the afternoon. They were to put their creative hats on and think of the ways to market the show to wide audiences. 

Everyone paired up with another ITP colleague and they were given 30 minutes to create a slogan about the exhibition for the side of a red London bus. At the end an ‘elevator pitch’* was to be delivered to sell the slogan to the rest of the group.

The creative buzz filled the room the moment the paper sheets and colourful markers had been distributed, ideas were flying across the board room table. The groups got quite competitive; everyone wanted their idea to be ‘the one’. And here are the  slogans, from tempting, through mysterious to promising and funny:

 Join the Journey with the Mummies (Alaa & Marwa), More Liveliness than you can imagine (Berkay & Costas), Juice for After Life ‘ Mummuako’ (Asmaa & Mostafa), Discover Eternity Find Immortality (Hayk & Marine), Meet the Eight at the Gate of Digital Age (Seyda & Hajra), Mummy goes to Hospital: ancient Lives Revealed

(Shubha & Rhea), We are Dead but still Alive (Yue & Shimray), Discover the inside when the Ancient Meet the New (Ameena & Miao), Virtual Scans inside a Mummy

(O’bour & Wa’ad), Ancient Lives New Discoveries Now For Free Permanently (Balsam & Fatih).





The elevator pitches that followed were brief, to the point and delivered with the atmost passion. No doubt the ideas are just little seeds with a lot of potential to develop. Watch this space, a red bus is coming!


*’’Elevator pitch”, the name reflects the idea that it should be possible to deliver the summary in the time span of an elevator ride, or approx. thirty seconds to two minutes. The term itself comes from a scenario of an accidental meeting with someone important in the elevator. If the conversation inside the elevator in those few seconds is interesting and value adding, the conversation will continue after the elevator ride or end in exchange of business card or a scheduled meeting.


Posted by: BM ITP | August 20, 2014

ITP Diary 19th August 2014: Alaa Bakeer

Hello Everybody,

Hope you are all fine…

Today Tuesday 19th of August 2014; is a very interesting day in the ITP. In the morning after we met ITP team at the information desk at the British Museum we headed to the WCEC which is a new building in the BM, we started the day with an introduction to conservation and science by MR. David Saunders whom is the Head of Conservation and scientific research.

Introduction to Conservation and Science

Introduction to Conservation and Science

Then we splitted into groups. Our group was under the leadership of Duygu Camurcuoglu, we headed first to Stone wall painting and mosaic studio where we met Michael whom gave us an introduction about their work and the equipment’s they use, like the Internal extraction which is a device used for cleaning stone dust and another one in grey color used for solvents.

Our Group (Group 1) in Stone, Wall Painting and Mosaic Studio

Our Group (Group 1) in Stone, Wall Painting and Mosaic Studio

After that we went to western art and paper studio and met Jenny whom gave us a briefly overview of what the team in this studio are doing, then we went to  general tour in the studio where we first met Jude whom showed us some examples of papers, and some tools which is used in paper surface cleaning like sponge to clean the dust around the edges and certain kind of rubbers to remove the adhesive, then turned to Helen whom told us about the nature of papyrus and how the papyrus paper made and a lot of other information.

Then we met Ms. Monica the head of organic studio, she gave us a general look at the studio area and showed us the rooms around and what each of them is used for, such as; the spray room and organic object conservation laboratory and others.

Then we went to Ceramics and Metals conservation studio and took a tour in it and had a lot of stops with each of the team, to show us what he/she is working on, and finally but not least we got into an area for different functional rooms.

We had then a wonderful lunch with the CSR stuff in the Hartwell room.

After finishing we went again to the WCEC to attend our organized visits to scientific research laboratories that ended by a visit to organic analysis room.  

I’m really impressed by our sessions and visits today, a lot of information have been collected, a lot of devices equipment and materials have been seen, a lot of wonderful people have been met and although I’m a curator and not a specialist in conservation but I have learnt a lot of information about the nature of conservation to be able to give the conservator the work  he needs from me as a curator, and to be more careful  with the objects and their preservation which primarily I’m concerned about.

At the end of the day we took an official photo for 2014 ITP participants with Mr. Neil MacGregor the director of BM and Mrs. Claire Messenger the ITP  manager and with other  wonderful ITP team.

ITP 2014 Participants

ITP 2014 Participants

Finally, I’m really thankful to all the ITP team, the organizers and lecturers for their great efforts which I appreciate a lot, hope this year will be the most distinctive one.

Alaa Ahmed Bakeer, Curator at Museum of Islamic Art in Cairo, Egypt

Posted by: BM ITP | August 20, 2014

ITP Diary 18th August: Qi Yue

I really liked today’s session. In the morning, we learned the theory and practices of national and international loans. This topic is closely related with my daily work at my museum, but my work is in international loans only.

 It is really good to know what is the practice of the BM to manage international loans. Based on mutual understanding and trust, the goal for both the borrower and lender is to make things happen to hold an exciting exhibition together!
The museum assistant role is quite new for us, but the work they do is more like experts with multi-ability. It is really a great job with a lot of responsibility and patience. The arrangement of this role is really helpful and interesting!
I really enjoyed today’s session!


I also got a flower that I bought at the Kew Garden and it is growing! And would to share it with you.



Qi Yue / China


Posted by: BM ITP | August 18, 2014

ITP Diary 9th August 2014: Yu Miao

 Half day Tour in London city 

It was a sunny Saturday. We meet our ITP team members at the reception desk at Schafer house. Everyone looked very excited and happy, because we were going to see some of the most famous place in London. In our tour we visited Westminster Abbey, The house of Parliament ,The Elizabeth Tower and a lot of the world class scenic spot which I have only seen so on TV .

While we were walking along the road, the sun was shining brightly and the breeze was blowing gently and everyone seems to have a nice and lovely day. 

I want to remember all of the fantastic buildings, cultural heritages and the friendly people that I have met from different places around the world in the ITP program.

Thanks a lot for everyone, especially for the ITP team, what you have done for us, is perfect and unforgettable.




09 August

Yu Miao  / China



Posted by: BM ITP | August 18, 2014

ITP Diary 16th August 2014: Ameena Al-Abri


In the morning at 8:30 we met the  ITP team at Schafer house reception. Then our trip to Windsor castle and Stonehenge began with a wonderful guide Ruth.

When we arrived to Windsor castle, the unique architectural style and the fortified walls was very unique and interesting. When we got into the castle it had a lot of marvelous rooms, furniture and wall paintings. There was a set rout that we had to walk in the castle. We first entered room number 9 that includes precious and beautiful porcelain dining dishes, then we went upstairs to the royal residence where there are  wonderful arm and armors , after that we went straight to find Queen Victoria statue and the rectal the room that includes exotic room objects in showcases, we also entered to the Waterloo chamber which was created to commemorate the victory of the battle of Waterloo in 1815, and designed specifically to display portraits on the wall for rulers, soldiers and politicians.

We also got the chance to see  the king’s drawing room, the king’s bedroom and the king’s dining room with its ceiling decoration that contain paintings of food, vegetables and fruits .

After we finished our visit to Windsor castle we had the chance to go to Stonehenge which is a unique prehistoric temple. Finally we returned to London and we really enjoyed the day.

1 ameena





Ameena Al-Abri / Oman

Posted by: BM ITP | August 18, 2014

ITP Diary 15th August 2014: Constantinos Vasiliadis

15 August 2014

Today I had a really interesting day, I went to the British Museum galleries before the opening hour of the Museum. I visited the Parthenon gallery with CelestFerge and the assistance personnel of the Greek and Roman department to choose a new object for my presentation on the 1st of September. There I realize the similarities we do have between the British museum and the museum I work in such as; to work early before the visitors get in, to deal with the same objects from the same monuments and to face the same problems and challenges in their research.


Then we had an interesting lectures about fundraising and retail at the British Museum. It is really important for the Museums nowadays to become self-funded and generate income from other sources other than the government, in order to support their plans. Some ideas, as the specific categories of the shop-customers, or sponsorships, could be addressed in my institution.

Finally, we discussed about the skills that future museum professionals will need, to deal with the new challenges, and how the ITP will be like in 10 years! For sure we need “Heroes” that will combine knowledge from different fields of studies and a great network of ITP participants around the world to collaborate!



Constantinos Vasiliadis / Greece                                        

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