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Object Movement Dialogue

As part of the first Invisible Inventories exhibition, which is currently on display at the National Museum of Kenya, the International Inventories Programme (IIP) is hosting its seventh Object Movement Dialogue.

The conversation will be broadcast live on Facebook (@inventoriesprogramme).

This time, the event titled Community Voices will revolve around the perspectives of local communities from Kenya. Together with moderator Juma Ondeng' (National Museums of Kenya and member of the IIP), JC Niala (Head of the Africa Department of the Horniman Museum), Charles Leshore (Director of the Maa Cultures Museum) and Mzee Tiberious Otieno (Luo activist and cultural expert) will discuss how cultural artefacts have been stolen from Kenya since the beginning of colonial times until today, and what impact their absence has on the communities of origin.

Specific reference is made to selected objects and their cultural significance that are represented in the current exhibition. Some of these are currently in the collections of the IIP's two German partner museums, the Rautenstrauch-Joest-Museum in Cologne and the Weltkulturenmuseum in Frankfurt am Main, and were examined in greater detail as part of the exhibition in a cooperation between the German and Kenyan museum experts.

  1. Moderation
    Juma Ondeng’ studied heritage and international development at the University of East Anglia, UK. He has been involved in training programmes on the institution of museums in the East African region, focusing on collections care, exhibitions, museum education and outreach. He is currently the chief curator at the regional museum in western Kenya, Kitale Museum. He is a founding member of the International Inventories Programme.
  2. Panellists
    JC Niala, a Kenyan academic who is currently Head of the Africa Department at the Horniman Museum in London. Niala is also an award-winning playwright and screenwriter, and an Honorary Research Fellow at the University of Warwick. She bases her creative work on historical and anthropological research.


    Charles Leshore is Director of the Maa Cultures Museum, a museum of traditional culture of the Maasai and other Maa language communities.

    Mzee Tiberious Otieno is a cultural activist, Luo cultural expert and retired secondary school teacher.

The International Inventories Programme is a project of the artist collectives The Nest (Kenya) and SHIFT (Germany/France), the National Museums of Kenya, the Rautenstrauch-Joest-Museum in Cologne, the Weltkulturen Museum in Frankfurt am Main and the Goethe-Institut. The exhibition project "Invisible Inventories" is funded by the German Federal Cultural Foundation.