The Baksı bathes in glory

The Council of Europe's Museum Prize goes to Hüsamettin Koçan's mountain-top museum

By Michael Hornsby | December 9, 2013


Some great news out of Strasbourg last week, as the Council of Europe awarded the Museum Prize for 2014 to the Baksı Museum in Bayburt, in northeastern Turkey. The prestigious prize has been awarded annually since 1977 to a museum judged to have made a significant contribution to the understanding of European cultural heritage.

Cornucopia profiled the Baksı Museum in Issue 49, declaring that by any standard it deserves a place among the world’s top ten most remote museums. Needless to say we are delighted for Husamettin and Oya Koçan that their years of hard work have won even higher accolades.

Museum Prize rapporteur Vesna Marjanovic said of Baksı: ‘This museum, its governance and the activities associated with it, provide a very inspiring model of how the principles of the Council of Europe Faro Convention on the value of cultural heritage for society can be adopted to fit locally.’

The Baksı Museum beat two other finalists to claim the prize, the Bildmuseet in Umeå, Sweden and the Žaņa Lipkes Memoriāls in Riga, Latvia.

As the winner of the award in 2014, the museum will keep a statue by Joan Miro, ‘La femme aux beaux seins’, an exhibition of whose work, incidentally, is currently at the Tophane-i Amire, in Beyoğlu, Istanbul.

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