NMPFT rebrands as National Media Museum - Museums Association

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NMPFT rebrands as National Media Museum

The National Museum of Photography, Film and Television in Bradford is to rebrand as the National Media Museum (NMM).
Patrick Steel
The rebrand is a 'statement of intent' on the way the museum covers its subject, said Colin Philpott, the head of the museum. He added that
it would reflect the changing nature of media and the convergence of photography, film and television. No other institution is tracking those changes, he said.

In August this year the posts of senior curator for photography and senior curator for television were made redundant as part of a restructure in preparation for the rebrand.

Defending the changes, Philpott said that the rebranding 'does involve broadening, but it is not a move away from the core subjects of photography, film and television'.

The museum's plans are in two phases - in the short-term it has a new website, and its print materials and signage have also changed. Next year it plans to change its animation gallery to encompass digital animation, and in particular gaming.

It will also dedicate gallery space to developments such as user-generated content and blogging, while an area of the NMM website will tell the history of the internet in a 'virtual gallery'.

An acquisitions committee for contemporary and recent photography will also be set up. Philpott said a university chair of photography would also be created as well as a bursary dedicated to finding up-and-coming talent.

In the long term the museum hopes to develop four new galleries, dedicated to film heritage, radio, news and advertising. It is also in talks with a 'number of London organisations' over a satellite museum in the south that 'could be in a new build, or an existing space in an existing institution', according to Philpott.

Funding for the long-term plans has not been secured, but the NMM is looking to the Heritage Lottery Fund, the regional development agency and the private sector. It is also in funding talks with the radio industry. Philpott is hoping that the developments will have a strong link to the government's media literacy agenda, and that this may also provide a further source of funding.

In partnership with the City of Bradford and the University of Bradford, the NMM is also hoping that a new building for the galleries may be provided as part of plans for the regeneration of Bradford city centre.

Philpott said that if this redevelopment did not get the go ahead then the NMM 'could still achieve some of the plans, but it would be better if we had the space'.

The museum's core funding will be unaffected, and it will remain part of the National Museum of Science and Industry.

Patrick Steel

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