The Museum of Vancouver has partnered with local businesses to breathe new life into artifacts and make them available for culture lovers to take history home with them via a new retail collection. This initiative goes beyond an on-location gift shop, creating a model that works directly with local retailers to produce and sell items inspired by the MOV collection.
I was at the museum late yesterday afternoon for the collection’s launch. Murchie’s has released a limited edition Smilin’ Buddha Tea, both a nod to Chinese culture as well as inspiration drawn from the Neon Vancouver exhibition. Harvey Burritt’s 2nd Century Rug Company features streetcar scrolls listing destinations along the number 18 route in Vancouver.
The original scroll itself dates from the mid 1950′s and is on display at MOV. Each rug is individually hand-knotted in Nepal and rugs can be customized to fit your living space.
“When the MOV approached us to be part of the program, we jumped at the opportunity,” says Harvey Burritt. “We are known for our ability to create high quality, custom area rugs from items that are meaningful to our clients. We have applied this ability to the treasure trove of MOV’s collection. I can’t think of a better way for my family to support one of our city’s cultural institutions.”
In addition to Harvey Burritt and Murchie’s Teas, MOV is working with several local businesses, including Country Furniture, Cascade Room Restaurant & Bar, Walrus (one of my favourite shops!), Make Vancouver, Vancouver Special, Bookmark at the Vancouver Public Library, and London Drugs.
“This new model is a great way to take the MOV brand and our array of historical artifacts out to the city,” says Kate Follington, Director of Development at the MOV. “Given that we can only ever display a fraction of our collection, it is a way for us to breathe new life into artifacts and raise funds to continue our work.”
Each product in the MOV Collection comes with a history of the original artifact and a catalogue number so that buyers can look the artifact up on openMOV. Products and locations can be found online. Click here to view the MOV products on Flickr.
[Home Collection rugs: Bus Scroll, Corporate Seals, Riot Board - Love, No. 18 Scroll. MOV photo]
The retail line is part of a project supported by the Vancity Social Enterprise Portfolio and is being developed as an alternative line of revenue for the MOV. Funds raised through the retail initiative will benefit MOV’s special exhibitions and its school programs that reach 10,000 elementary school students annually. Think holiday shopping needs for any art or culture lover on your list!