“Museum in the Village” | Launch of Presentations “The Museum Goes to the Village”

The “Museum in the Village” is a project of artistic and social intervention that connects museums and communities through the arts, providing a cultural program to audiences who usually do not have the opportunity to enjoy it.

The project is aimed at still independent seniors, aged 65 and over, from the 26 municipalities integrated into the Culture 2027 Network, who live in isolated rural environments with a smaller demographic, facing challenges in accessing cultural facilities. Through a distinctive artistic and cultural program, the SAMP team, in collaboration with professionals from the respective 13 Museums involved, brings pieces from museum collections to different villages to be reinterpreted by the resident seniors (“The Museum Goes to the Village”). Their memories and experiences are valued as a place of sharing and gain meaning through collaborative creation, which will be later presented in museums by the community participants (“The Village Goes to the Museum”).

The first phase of the project, the Preparation phase, was completed earlier this May. Before the selected work from each museum goes out, meaning to the “Village,” the communities receiving the piece were previously prepared by the project team. This preparation included not only the seniors who will directly participate in the project but also all the official structures involved with this community – Municipalities, Museums, Parish Councils, Local Associations, Social Institutions, among others. It was a moment for everyone to get to know each other and integrate with the proposals of the SAMP Museum in the Village project. For the individual involvement of each participant, the seniors were invited to bring objects, songs, stories, or memories to be shared with the group. It marked the beginning of the work of valuing the individual through their memories, territories, and culture.

Presentation of the Performance and Exhibitions

Currently, the project will initiate the phase of action called “The Museum Goes to the Village,” where a piece (or set of pieces) from museum collections will be presented by the museum team to the communities. This work, developed with communities and museum professionals, involves selecting elements from the museum universe and, fundamentally, invites reflection on the social role of the museum. What in the community is museable? What can people build from what the museum offers? What encounters do the collections provide? All this work of approach and heritage education is important in the holistic sense of creating a relationship between communities and museums, between the individual and the various narratives of the museum object, in order to move beyond contemplative attitudes to make room for creative action. This way, the elderly can recognize that they can still create and identify objects, processes, stories, and their entire cultural heritage.

In May, we will start another important stage of the project, which will extend until September, allowing museums to present their collections to associated communities. Subsequently, a series of temporary exhibitions will follow, starting non-simultaneously in different municipalities. These exhibitions have different durations and scales, allowing other audiences to become acquainted with the museum piece presented to the group of seniors.

So far, a total of 27 sessions have been held, involving more than 240 elderly individuals, with each village hosting at least 2 preparation sessions with the SAMP working team. These sessions saw significant participation from the involved parties, both from museum professionals in the municipalities that provide a piece and those in the municipalities receiving the pieces in the villages, in addition to the constant presence and participation of technicians and local authorities. This involvement helped create a strong and consistent partnership network, especially facilitating the interaction of direct participants.

Finally, the elderly will be invited to discuss, reflect, and reinterpret the pieces presented in their villages, giving rise to a new artistic creation. This will be the starting point for the development of the next stages of the co-creation project, “The Village Goes to the Museum,” a moment intended to present the results of this experience of sharing, involvement, and inspiration between Art, Communities, and Museums.

The Museum in the Village project is co-financed by the PO ISE – Portugal 2020, through the Social Innovation Portugal Initiative, with the Municipal Council of Leiria as the social investor, also joining the Culture 2027 Network as a partner that brings together Museums, Municipalities, Parish Councils, Associations, and Institutions from the 26 municipalities in the network. It also has the support of the Polytechnic Institute of Leiria, the Union of Parishes of Leiria, Pousos, Barreira, and Cortes, among many others who have joined this creative and innovative initiative.


May 17, 2021 | Inauguration RAUL DA BERNARDA MUSEUM GOES TO CABEÇAS The piece will be on display from May 18 to June 29, 2021

May 20, 2021 | Inauguration CALDAS DA RAINHA ARTS CENTER GOES TO ATEANHA The piece will be on display from May 21 to August 25, 2021

June 8, 2021 | Inauguration ALENQUER MUNICIPAL MUSEUM GOES TO PENA AND CASAL DA PENA The piece will be on display from June 13 to August 1, 2021

June 9, 2021 | Inauguration CASA DO TEMPO MUSEUM GOES TO FANHAIS The piece will be on display from June 13 to July 25, 2021

June 22, 2021 | Inauguration FIGUEIRÓ DOS VINHOS MUSEUM AND ARTS CENTER GOES TO CERCAL The piece will be on display from June 23 to August 19, 2021

June 23, 2021 | Inauguration TOMAR PHOTOGRAPHY STUDIES CENTER GOES TO MOSTEIRO The piece will be on display from June 27 to August 1, 2021

June 24, 2021 | Inauguration ROQUE GAMEIRO WATERCOLOR MUSEUM GOES TO LOURICEIRA DE CIMA The piece will be on display from June 27 to August 1, 2021

June 25, 2021 | Inauguration LOURINHÃ MUSEUM GOES TO ALCANADAS Temporary exhibition

June 29, 2021 | Inauguration LEIRIA MUSEUM GOES TO COLUMBEIRA The piece will be on display from July 1 to August 1, 2021

July 1, 2021 | Inauguration PENICHE MUSEOLOGICAL NETWORK GOES TO SÃO BENTO The piece will be on display from July 2 to August 5, 2021

July 6, 2021 | Inauguration PORTUGUESE POPULAR ART MUSEUM GOES TO FOLGAROSA The piece will be on display from July 7 to September 2, 2021

July 8, 2021 | Inauguration ÓBIDOS MUSEUMS AND GALLERIES NETWORK GOES TO FREIXIANDA The piece will be on display from July 11 to August 16, 2021

July 13, 2021 | Inauguration GLASS MUSEUM GOES TO FETELARIA The piece will be on display from July 14 to September 1