Former manager of the National Gallery Eka Kiknadze is now a laboratory assistant. Nika Akhalbedashvili, the director appointed by Minister Tsulukiani, ousted him after Eka Kinkadze formally requested a plan to evacuate the museum and evacuate the exhibits kept in the funds.
“We do not know the new evacuation document, where the process will be described in detail. I doubt there is simply no such thing. Verbal intentions are alarmingly unprofessional and threatening, both in terms of the safety of the collections and the great interest in them from different groups.
The layout of the collections is unknown.
It is unknown where the gold fund of the Art Museum will go “- Says Eka Kiknadze
According to the order received today, I have been transferred from the position of the museum manager to the position of a laboratory assistant. He did not read Dochanashvili and talked to him directly “- Eka Kiknadze writes on Facebook.
Along with Eka, two other employees, Darejan Gogashvili, also changed their positions [მუზეუმის რესტავტაცია-კონსერვაციის მიმართულების ყოფილი ხელმძღვანელი] And Dinara Vachnadze [ კოლექციების მართვის დეპარტამენტის ხელმძღვანელი]. As a result of staff changes, museum staff will no longer be able to monitor the evacuation process. The process of evacuation of exhibits will be led by Director Nika Akhalbedashvili and his two deputies, Neli Kobiashvili and Gia Marsagishvili.
‘: .. It is not allowed to start evacuation until the new plan becomes public for all interested parties and is evaluated by specialists. We would like to remind you that we are talking about collections of different composition, antiquity and condition (often, the heaviest), which belong not only to Georgian, but also to the world cultural heritage, and for which an army of specialists of different profiles is needed.
My colleagues and I are starting a legal battle. It will be our fight “- Says Eka Kiknadze.
The evacuation plan presented by the Ministry, which envisages the emptying of the Art Museum repositories in 6 months, is critically evaluated by three art organizations and issued a special statement on the issue: ICOM Georgian National Committee, ICOMOS Georgian National Committee and Georgian Blue Shield National Committee believe that the Ministry The evacuation plan presented by it raises a number of questions, the main issue being that it is unrealistic and impossible to transfer this volume of exhibitors to other funds in 6 months.
“For example, when the National Museum carried out the collection of the Eastern Countries Collection of the Museum of Art (up to 5000 items) in improper conditions. The project of temporary placement in the repository of the Janashia Museum (within the framework of the EU twinning project, with the participation of experts from the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation and the Berlin State Museums, 2009-2012), took him 2 years. For emergency evacuation of collections it is necessary:
A) a detailed plan developed by conservation and collection management specialists, based on an assessment of the condition of the collections, describing the risks, identifying the necessary material and human resources;
B) Specialists with relevant qualifications and experience should be involved in the process; – It is spread by organizations In the statement.
All three organizations believe that the building of the Art Museum should be preserved, and that issues related to the collections preserved in it should be discussed publicly, with the involvement of all stakeholders and professionals.
Published by the Ministry of Culture 10 Side evacuation plan, From which it is clear that the exhibits from the Art Museum will be displayed in 6 stages.
In the first stage, the items included in the gold fund are transferred from the art museum, however, the evacuation plan does not specify where this fund will be transferred. The plan was made without elaboration after the appointment of Tea Tsulukiani as Minister of Culture. Prior to that, the National Museum team worked with the Museum of Art staff for years on an art museum’s plan.
According to the project prepared by the Georgian National Museum of Evacuation, before the rehabilitation of the building was completed, the collections would be housed in the buildings belonging to the National Museum: the Simon Janashia Museum of Georgia (Golden Fund), the new space of the Art Museum and the National Gallery. None of the collections left the National Museum. The evacuation project has been repeatedly submitted to both local and international professional circles, discussed at a parliamentary committee hearing and before the interagency commission convened at the Ministry of Culture (2018-2020). Says Eka Kiknadze, former manager of the museum.
The rejection of the old plan and the new plan without details make the staff of the Art Museum and its fans doubt that the Ministry’s hasty approach will damage the exhibits, the museum building is doomed to demolition, and the icons in the gold fund may be handed over to the church by the state.