Article in the Summer copy of Art Quarterly Magazine
Museums professionals across the UK are increasingly treating certain
artefacts in their collections as sacred. Over the last decade objects
deemed to hold special significance or religious value for some
communities have been treated with reverence. In some cases they are
hidden away from public access and even researchers.
This is a reversal of the role of the museum, which is to open up other
past worlds to people; both by the viewing of cultural artefacts and the
research that is conducted on them and the historical context in which
they were used. The move towards elevating the sacred meaning of objects in the museum hampers that vital remit.