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Who won the European Museum of the Year award and why did Estonian museums refuse to close for the night?

26.05.14

From May 14-17, Tallinn played host to the European Museum Forum 2014, culminating in the presentation of the European Museum of the Year Award 2014. This year's Museum Forum programme can seen here: http://www.emya2014.eu.

Programme The European Museum of the Year award has been presented since 1977 and the impressive list of winners over the years can be seen running down the right hand side of the European Museum Forum's web page: http://europeanmuseumforum.info/emya.html. The list of this year's nominees was also long and prestigious: http://www.emya2014.eu/Nominations. But before introducing this year's winner, an unusual occurance happened on the same night in museums all over Estonia... They call it Muuseumiöö, the Night of Museums, and it also featured English-language tours: http://www.muuseumioo.ee/en All together, an estimated 75 000 people attended Museum Night in Estonia according to Estonian Public Broadcasting in English http://news.err.ee/v/Culture/b9d0192f-58c8-4cda-8ae0-0b392a88cf38.

And the award went to.... Well, you can watch the awards ceremony and find out: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VgLijXo0WaI But we'll cut to the chase and let you in on the fact that he European Museum of the Year Award 2014 went to Nobel laureate writer Orhan Pamuk's Museum of Innocence in Istanbul, Turkey http://www.masumiyetmuzesi.org/?Language=ENG.

Mr Pamuk was in Tallinn to receive the award: ETV Interview: Turkish Nobelist Pamuk on Museums, Memory and Melancholy http://news.err.ee/v/Culture/e430cd0d-4cde-40f5-9468-761ebe615f98 The list of all the award-winners and special commendations can be seen at http://www.emya2014.eu/index.php?page=207 Tallinn's own Lennusadam / Seaplane Harbour of the Estonian Maritime Museum received special commendation "For the impressive maritime atmosphere with spectacular, theatrical exhibition design beautifully integrated into the building and for the evident central position of the visitor at the heart of the online experience which allows them to download information whilst walking through the exhibition." When in Tallinn, you must come and see this extraordinary new museum, which opened in spring 2012: http://lennusadam.eu/en/    

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Toomas Hendrik Ilves
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