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Museum History

The Shirak Regional Museum was established in 1930. During the seventy years of its existence, tens of thousands of exhibits which represent the material and spiritual culture of the historic region of Shirak have been collected and stored at the museum. Many of these exhibits are unique in their nature and have particular scientific and cultural value. The exhibits of the Museum are classified in the collections of archaeology, ethnography, anthropology, numismatics, fine arts, as well as other documentary materials of more recent periods in history. Despite the difficult conditions of the post-earthquake period, the Shirak Regional Museum has organized several exhibitions in Gyumri and Yerevan, such as “The Ancient Culture of the Shirak Region”, “5000 Years of Pottery in the Shirak Region”, “Belgian Artists for Earthquake-hit Leninakan”, etc. The Museum collection is currently being conserved rather than displayed due to space restrictions. The exhibits are housed in a very small temporary building which itself is in an precarious situation ever since the earthquake, and is used basically as a place for storage of the Museum's materials. In the current conditions it is impossible to guarantee the required thermal and humidity regime for the safety of the materials, were they to be exhibited. The absence of heating in the storage houses during the winter months and drastic changes of temperature and humidity are having disastrous effects on the collections especially on archaeological metals and on the paintings and drawings. In the current conditions the Shirak Regional Museum is not only powerless to carry out its principal functions, but also is not in a position to be actively engaged in the processes of establishment of democracy, founding of the civic society, support the efforts for the reconstruction of the earthquake zone, creation of new jobs, fulfilment of tourism and infrastructural development projects, and raising the cultural awareness of society.

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