Measures of Support for Intangible Cultural Heritage: Governments, Institutions and Municipalities, organized by the Conseil québécois du patrimoine vivant (CQPV – Quebec Council for Living Heritage). There were opening remarks from Christine St-Pierre, Quebec's minister of culture; Koïchiro Matsuura, UNESCO; and Normand Legault, with CQPV. All in French, of course, and most of it beyond me, apart from a few helpful whisperings in my ear from Mathias Bizimana (from the Canadian Council for UNESCO, who it was great to see again).
What is interesting so far is that there already seems to be a bit of a buzz tonight around the fact that while Canadian provinces and NGOs are being recognized for, and doing, great work in safeguarding intangible cultural heritage, the federal government is still apparently resistant to the idea of signing the 2003 Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage, a fact alluded to by Mr. Matsuura in his opening remarks. I'm hopeful that this conference, and the discussions that come out of it, continue to add to a growing interest in, and recognition of, the importance of ICH to Canadians. Let's sign that Charter!
There is an interesting lineup of speakers for the next few days, and I had an interesting first chat with the Scottish contingent who are doing interesting stuff with community programs and living heritage in museums.
More to come!