Synopsis: The 2011 annual conference of the ICOM International Committee for Historic House Museums (DEMHIST) was organised by the Museum Plantin-Moretus and Gaasbeek Castle. The conference focused on the subject of how to interpret historic houses, and how they ‘reinvent the past’. Amongst the various possible approaches, the conference dealt with the Historic House Museum as a ‘theatre of history’._x000D_
Authors like Peter van Mensch, Maria de Jesus Monge and Antonio Ponte discuss authenticity. How authentic can any reinvention of the past be? Is there such a thing as authenticity? Is there such a thing as history or are there only historians reinventing the past? Can a focus on the interaction between the production and reception of the past, i.e. house museums and their curators, solve the dilemma?_x000D_
Yves Schoonjans, David Milne and Nicholas Smit discuss the use of the museum as a stage, where personal interpretations of visual artists offer a different approach to the past and its reinvention._x000D_
Marc Jacobs, Dries Chaerle, Morris J. Vogel and Dirk Van Den Broeck address the intangible aspects of reinventing the past: from reenacting court festivities to creating an audio guide for an by people with a disability, all demonstrate in some way the challenges of conveying the intangible heritage inherent in historic houses. Throughout, quotes and summarised presentations flesh out the context of the discussions. [publisher's summary]
Description: historic houses. international committees; meetings.