From Maidan initiative to the national institution
The success and the phenomenon of Maidan are connected with the basics of its self-organization. United by the common idea, people gathered together according to their skills and perception of their personal contribution to the Revolution. Dozens of public initiatives emerged spontaneously, depending on the needs. They found their own way to join the protest, were actively engaged in the fight, became part of a unified Euromaidan body with its powerful mobilizing potential, horizontal lines of communication, coordination, the ability to affect the target audience quickly, as well as to react promptly to the changes in circumstances.
January 2014: the first initiative to create Museum of Maidan appears;
September 2014: the Museum of Freedom Initiative joins forces with the Maidan Museum, creating a joint Maidan Museum/Freedom Museum Initiative.
Museum professionals added their own contribution to civil resistance. Once they realized how historically significant this protest is, they started working on preservation of the unique evidence for the future generations. They did educational work on the barricades and in the media-space, explaining that the evidence consists of the objects at the center of what’s happening, the phenomena that occurred in the process of resistance, and finally, every fact, detail, and emotion. They were recording personal stories of the witnesses and participants, inquiring about their intentions, aims, dreams, hopes and feelings. They also collected items, kept records of immobile objects, traced the charts of mood changes, values, and the level of participation within the Ukrainian society.
Working at the center of the action since January 2014, these activists named themselves the Maidan Museum. After the victory, when it became necessary to create an institution that would continue to preserve the memory of these unique events, Maidan Museum joined forces with the initiative of the Analytical Center pro.mova – Museum of Freedom, as well as Ukrainian Institute for National Remembrance. Later on, Maidan Museum NGO was founded. Its first task was to preserve the memory about the events and people connected with the Revolution of Dignity by collecting evidence, documents, oral stories and items, preservation of memorial objects and places.
Since January 2014, the representatives of Maidan Museum/Freedom Museum Initiative have collected more than two thousand artefacts, documents, photos and testimonies that has become the basis for the National Memorial to the Heavenly Hundred Heroes and Revolution of Dignity Museum. They had consultations with the world-renowned museum experts and implemented a lot of exhibition projects in Ukraine and abroad. They visited European museums to learn more about the field and gain experience, analyzed the trend for the creation of “museums of memory” and challenges they are facing.
The following institutions supported the creation of Maidan Museum at different stages:
• Maidan Self-Defense
• NGO “Family of the Heavenly Hundred Heroes”
• Initiative Group of Affected by/Injured at Maidan
• Аuto Maidan
• Library of Maidan
• Post-office of Maidan
• Maidan Press-Center
• Art Hundred
• Ukrainian Institute of National Remembrance
• Ministry of Culture of Ukraine
• Kyiv City State Administration
• National Center of Folk Culture “Ivan Honchar Museum”
• National Sanctuary Complex "Sophia of Kyiv”
• Museum of Kyiv History
• National Museum of the History of Ukraine in the Second World War
• CO “Agency of Cultural Strategies”
• Ukrainian National Committee of ICOM
• Ukrainian Committee of the Blue Shield
• November 18th, 2015: Decree of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine No1186-р “Regarding the Founding of the State Institution ‘Memorial Complex to the Heavenly Hundred Heroes and Revolution of Dignity Museum’”;
• January 18th, 2016: Ihor Poshyvailo is appointed a Director of the Revolution of Dignity Museum. In September 2016, he is appointed a General Director after having won an open competition;
• January 20th, 2016: Official registration of the State Institution “Memorial Complex to the Heavenly Hundred Heroes and Revolution of Dignity Museum”;
• April 12th, 2016: Decree of the President of Ukraine No 138/2016 “Granting the State Institution ‘Memorial Complex to the Heavenly Hundred Heroes and Revolution of Dignity Museum’ a status of the National Institution”;
• September 14th, 2017: Decision of Kyiv City Council No 9/3016 on allocation of the land plot for construction, operation and maintenance of the Memorial and Museum Complex on Heavenly Hundred Heroes Alley.
• The Institution is accountable to the Ukrainian Institute of National Remembrance.