Posted on Tuesday 29th May 2012
Matthew Rampley has edited the May 2012 issue of the journal Centropa, on the topic of museums in eastern and central Europe. The history of galleries and museums in Britain, France, Italy and Germany has been thoroughly examined, but those in Austria-Hungary and the states that emerged out of its ruins in 1918 are considerably less well known, despite the importance of their collections. This issue of Centropa, a leading periodical in the art, architecture and culture of central Europe, contains articles on museums in cities such as Warsaw, Cracow, Budapest, Zagreb and Sarajevo. The main focus is on their role in promoting ideas of national culture and identity in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. For Hungarians, Poles, Croats and many other groups in the region museums such as the National Museum in Cracow (illustrated) provided a means for putting on display the achievements of their national culture, and as a result they could be used to bolster the demand to be recognised as the equal of the more powerful states of Europe.