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Manitoba Museum 'running out of room' to store artifacts

Artifacts being stored at the Manitoba Museum. Artifacts being stored at the Manitoba Museum.
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The Manitoba Museum has collected so many artifacts over the years that it’s starting to run out of storage space.

According to the museum’s CEO Dorota Blumczyńska, they’ve known for a while that space was running out; however, it’s now gotten to the point where they need an expansion or else they won’t be able to add to their collection.

She said in order for the museum to tell powerful stories and conduct meaningful research, it needs to bring in items of significance on a continuous basis and storing these items for future generations.

“You can imagine that over 50 years of doing that, we’re running out of room,” she said.

Blumcyńska said the museum has brought the issue of its declining space to the province on a number of occasions, and is looking for support from the government.

She explained that storage conditions at the museum are specific and requires certain environmental factors.

“Museological storage is different than other kinds of storage,” she said. “It has to have a very specific level of humidity, a very specific temperature. It cannot have any UV exposure. It’s built for that purpose, because it then allows artifacts and specimens to really stand the test of time.”

Blumcyńska said she is optimistic, as the museum has a great partnership with the province.

“I don’t think it’s a question of alignment, I think it’s a question of sometimes prioritizing,” she said.

“Right now, we’re at a point where we need to make sure this surfaces to the top, not because the crisis hits tomorrow, but if we don’t start the work tomorrow, we’re going to be behind the line all the time and crisis will come.”

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