Punk: a complex and oftentimes ambiguous term, comprising culture, music, fashion, ideologies, ethics, and art. It is a movement which, regardless of political leanings, is typically categorised by anti-establishmentism, non-conformity, anti-stateism, anti-capitalism, gender-egalitarianism, direct action and a DIY ethic. Perhaps not something one would expect to see in the confines of museums , which for many are institutions of and for the culturally dominant.

The Punk Museology project aims to change this not by placing punk as an object within the confines of the Museum’s walls, but by considering examples of activity in which the ethics of punk is combined with the practices and aims of museology: the preservation, display and remembrance of objects, events and peoples.

Thesis One: That museum practice always needs a kick up the arse.

Thesis Two: That lengthy dominance of one group creates dead weight in museological practice.

Thesis Three: That museums are often afraid of direct political action for fear of losing public/government support and sponsorship 

Thesis Four: That museums are capable of providing space for political, cultural and social debate and are duty-bound to do so. 

Thesis Five: That a ‘punk’ ethic and attitude can help revitalise and reframe museological practices, making them more relevant and politically powerful.  

This project seeks submissions relating to active political involvement, small institutions, unusual and non-establishment practices and collections, craftivism, direct action and protest in museums, a sense of DIY, and more. They may be actual interventions, or dream-things.

The project will produce a zine and social media presence with the aim of raising awareness of alternative practice amongst the museum community - sharing ideas, practices and ethics in order sometimes to shock, and always to provoke change.

To see the manifesto in action or to get involved, see our blog and latest call to action