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Report on the joint meeting of the
IMA-Commission on Museums
and SMMP-Europe
Munich, Germany - October
26, 2012

After a few years of low attendances, it was wonderful to have a large group of curators from Europe and North America gathered together at the annual Munich get-together. Over thirty attended and my thanks goes out to them.

As both the European co-ordinator for SMMP and the Secretary of the IMA-CM I took the chair of the meeting in the continuing absence of a President of the Commission. This absence is being addressed and I hope that a new President will be in place this early this year.

I began by going through a number of points and announcements that I needed to raise. These were:

1.      All members were reminded that subscriptions/dues could be paid in cash to myself as European co-ordinator or online through paypal. I informed members that the amount remains $10 or €10.

2.      I mentioned at the 2011 meeting that I might set up a SMMP Europe account to make it easier to transfer money to the US, but as I am attending the Tucson Show, it is easier for me to just take it to the US and give it to Anna (Domitrovic)

3.      The SMMP web site is still looking for "best practice" articles from members. I mentioned that articles on de-accessioning registered material and how museums undertake this would be welcome.

4.      Members were reminded that the M&M7, which was held in Dresden, Germany, was very successful and thanks go to the organising committee. There was no SMMP meeting there but an IMA-CM meeting was held.

5.      At the IMA-CM meeting a proposal was made by Japanese Mineralogical Museums group of the Japan Association of Mineralogical Sciences to hold the next M&M (8) in Itoigawa in Japan.

6.      Members were also reminded of the existence of the SMMP Research Study Grant of up to $1000.

7.      In order to tray and foster better communications between members a Facebook Page and a MinDat forum was opened. They can be found here:

There followed our usual round-up of museum news from members own museums. Some of the items raised were:

1.      2014 is officially designated as the UNESCO Year of Crystallography. A number of members were interested to hear of any exhibitions related to this. Information from UNESCO can be found here:

2.      The meteorite hall at the Natural History Museum was re-opened.

3.      Johan Kjellman from the University of Uppsala in Sweden had received a grant to look at crystal model collections in different museums.

4.      At the Natural History Museum in London the Department of Earth Sciences was created through the merger of mineralogy and a number of other departments including anthropology and palaeontology.

5.      Elois Gaillou reported on the reconstruction of the Natural History Museum of LA County in California.

6.      Maria Alferova told us about the situation in the Fersman Museum in Moscow. New exhibitions are being planned including one on Faberge.

7.      The Natural History Museum in Paris will re-open the mineral gallery this year (2013) after a six month delay. Temporary exhibits are in preparation. There are however political problems and a serious loss of funds and space.

8.      At the Natural History Museum in Milan, we learned of a roof collapse The gallery will re-open in December 2012. New spaces will also be created for temporary exhibitions.

9.      In Berlin, the refurbished mineral gallery of the Technical University of Berlin will re-open in January. Those on the pre-conference field trip of M&M7 were treated to a sneek preview.

Submitted by
Peter Davidson
European Coordinator SMMP
Secretary IMA-CM

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