The Dialogue with Skills in Archaeological Open-Air Museums was an important Theme in the OpenArch-Project, coordinated by the Museum of Modena (Italy) and the Archaeological-Ecological Centre Albersdorf (Germany).
This workpackage focuses on the people that do demonstrations of traditional skills such as metalworking, textile working, pottery making, woodworking etc. The Museum in Italy and in Germany organised four specialist workshops for this target group, which were combined with the joint seminars of the OpenArch-project. The workshops were realized at the partner institutions in Modena (2012), Archeon (2013), Albersdorf (2013) and Kierikki (2014); they all focused on the archaeological and natural environment, the techniques, the craftspersons themselves, the interaction between crafts and also on intangible aspects of the crafts (f. e. stories). Due to the scientific background and because of their public interest and effects on presenting (pre-)history, this work package had close relations with both The Dialogue with Science/Experimental Archaeology and with The Dialogue with the visitor.
Besides the genuine Crafts workshops there were also other activities and experiments about traditional skills at the different partner museums.
A compilation of some of the handicraft and skills activities with their experiences and results has been made with this “Guideline Manual”. Because of its “digital character” there will be additions and more reports in the manual in the future.
We like to thank all partners for their friendly and giving cooperation and for contributing to this report.
We hope that a lot of colleagues at other institutions will have some use for this work and will be inspired to try out their own traditional skills in a practical way and rejuvenate.