About

Online Archive of Slovenian emigrant handicrafts emerged as an outcome of mutual interest both to SEM and ISSV, as well as personal interests of Daša Koprivec and Aleksandra Ceferin.

The museum’s application to the Office for Slovenes Abroad for funding was subsequently ap-proved, and the visit was planned for May 2006.

The first meeting with handicrafts practitioners was organized by the Institute for Slovenian Studies of Victoria with the assistance of other Slovenian migrant organizations. The initiative presented at Baraga House in Melbourne at the beginning of May 2006 was received with enthusiasm and support. During the next few weeks Daša Koprivec and Aleksandra Ceferin would visit homes in Mel-bourne and Geelong areas, where samples of work would be viewed and photographed.

In the next three weeks the research field trips covered distances of over 1000 km in Melbourne and Geelong, resulting in documentation of over 400 photos. Aleksandra Ceferin subsequently collected sample exhibits for the planned physical exhibition at Slovenian Ethnographic Museum in Ljubljana.

At the same time the idea of the internet exhibition emerged in discussions between ISSV and SEM. The issue was an exhibition that could transcend the local nature of the physical exhibition and carry it to Slovenes worldwide.

These discussions were followed subsequently by meetings between SEM and ISSV in Ljubljana, and the concept began to take shape as a collaboration between SEM and ISSV. It was also envisaged that it might be expanded as an ongoing archive of Slovene Migrant Handcrafts in order to fulfill the mission of SEM as a collective memory of Slovene heritage to Slovenian migrant communities worldwide.

Following further discussions between ISSV, SEM and Bojan Morfej Ažman, the web developer of ISSV in Ljubljana, the funding for an online exhibition was applied for, and approved by the Ministry of Culture in Slovenija.

By the autumn 2006, Aleksandra Ceferin had collected all the exhibits. Some of these were gifted to SEM, some are to be returned. Most of the artifacts were sent through the Embassy of Slovenia in Australia, several were carried by Mrs. Ceferin, when she traveled to Ljubljana in September.

The Victorian handicrafts exhibition is intended to be the initial stage of the ongoing archival collection and presentation of the continued tradition of Slovenian handicrafts among the Slovenian migrant communities worldwide.