Deutsches Zeitungsmuseum, Wadgassen

Minutes of the annual general meeting of the AEPM

Sunday 5th of September 2010, from 9.00 am to 12.15 pm



Johan de Zoete, Museum Enschedé, Haarlem, the Netherlands (chair)
Eva Hanebutt-Benz, Gutenberg-Museum, Mainz, Germany (vice president)
Sascha Boßlet, Deutsches Zeitungsmuseum, Wadgassen, Germany (webmaster)
Rolf Demmerle, Germany (treasurer)
Ervin Nielsen, Danmarks Mediemuseum, Odense, Danmark
Stephen Hoskins, Centre for Fine Print, Bristol, United Kingdom
Eckhard Gorbach, Austria (advisor to the board)
Alan Marshall, Musée de l’Imprimerie, Lyon, France, was excused because of the Book History Workshop in Lyon.
Monika Jakobs, Kulturhuef, Grevenmacher, Luxembourg, attended the symposium on Saturday, but had to leave the same evening.

Robin Boone, Museum voor Industriële Archeologie en Textiel (MIAT), Gent, Belgium
Stephan Burkhardt and Hans-Ulrich Frey, Offizin Parnassia, Vättis, Switzerland
Roger Münch, Deutsches Zeitungsmuseum, Wadgassen, Germany
Andrea de Pasquale, Museo Bodoniano, Parma, Italy
Andreas Düspohl, Internationales Zeitungsmuseum, Aachen, Germany

Gertraude Benöhr, Germany

Item 1. Reports

Johan de Zoete welcomes all partaking the meeting, thanks Roger and Sascha for the good organization of the meeting at the Deutsches Zeitungsmuseum, and gives a review of the last two years as chairman of AEPM (attached). He then introduces and welcomes the new members.

Eva expresses her thanks that Johan as chairman took part in her farewell party at the Gutenberg-Museum on behalf of the AEPM and for the very nice book present from the association. She also conveys best greetings from Jürgen Bönig, Hamburg, Mario Derra, Gernsheim and the Korean colleagues from Cheong-Ju, who all could not come but would have liked to take part.

Rolf Demmerle presents the financial situation over the years 2008 and 2009 together with an outlook on 2010. The board members will get a detailed report with all account movements. In abstract: Although not all members had paid the membership fees, we were able to cover all expenses for the office, website, board meetings, a reception for our Swedish friends in Mainz and a farewell present for Eva. The conferences in 2008 and 2010 have been zero sum games. We do have sufficient funds for the near future and will ask the belated members for regulating their fees before the end of this year. Rolf also explains that, since Johan did not have a back office, it had been necessary to get the assistance of two secretaries successively (first Ulla, who had to quit for family reasons, then Inge, who got a position in a museum after freelancing in the Gutenberg-Museum and had to stop). AEPM refunded their expenses. Since April secretarial work has been shared by Rolf and Sascha. After the new election the new president would have to decide if he could use his or her own office, or if someone else should be asked to fulfil this task.

Since it is desirable to spend the money coming in by annual contributions, sponsoring and conferences, it is agreed upon that if possible educational matters should be supported (especially training of individual persons in crafts and tasks of printing and related matters), but that AEPM should always have some benefit also, like a written report to be published, for instance.

It is also agreed upon by the assembly that the annual fee of 50, — Euro will not be changed and that there will be made no differentiation between bigger and smaller museums. Increase of income should be coming from new members and by sponsor memberships.

Sascha Boßlet gives a report on the state of the homepage. The German version is established successfully, for the English version there is still a lack of translations. He regrets that he did not get any response when he sent out drafts of translations. The corrections necessary will now be realized by Stephen in Bristol.

It is decided that the internal section of the homepage will be given up; matters that are not meant for the general public will be conferred by means of newsletters. The membership list has to be worked over shortly. Rolf and Sascha will take care of this.

Item 2: Discussion about the reports and the symposium held in Wadgassen

The symposium on the subject of “Collecting of today. Towards a critical evaluation of your collections” had a high quality, was coherent and informative and was approved of by all participants. The reports and lectures will be published on the homepage before long.

Item 3: Approval of the actions of the board and auditors

The actions of the board and the financial report find approval of all members present.

Item 4: Structure of AEPM

The structure of AEPM is a vital topic for the further development of the association. Johan gives a detailed account of what the board members have discussed during their meetings in 2009 and 2010, based on the experiences of the past years. It is obvious that there is a general agreement that all representatives of printing museums so far involved value the existence of the association highly and that it should not be given up, although we had to observe that some central aims could not be realized in practice. The network function is important, fruitful and motivating, so we have to think of ways to make AEPM better workable and constructive in achieving progress.

Johan explains that we had to acknowledge the drawbacks rising from the simple fact of big distances in an European association, and also the language barriers. The result was that it was not possible to meet as often as one might wish, and that translation tasks were always time consuming and sometimes not accomplished in a satisfactory way. We believe in the necessity of personal meetings and discussions though, so that the use of e-mail and telephone cannot be the whole solution.

The new idea is that we change the structure of AEPM in such a way that more contacts are made possible without giving up the European bond. Within countries or regions groups should be constituted which meet on a regular time schedule. A good example are the Dutch printing museums and workshops, who achieved to establish for instance a successful web-portal of which all museums attached get a benefit ( This was only possible by regular meetings, two every year.

The national or regional groups are not meant to substitute the Europe wide group of AEPM, but to create a solid foundation for it and to reach more museums and workshops, so that planning and interchange can be intensified. The general meetings of AEPM and the conferences in the years between will keep their meaning and importance, but can gain input and inspiration from the groups cooperating nationally or regionally.

There should be a spokesman/woman for every country, but this will not mean that only these should be seen during the Europe-wide meetings! We hope to reach more active people within our field by these means and to be able to profit from their collaboration.

The assembly approves of this proposal without exception.

The assembly also agrees that the situation in Sweden, where this structure has existed for some years now, should not lead to just one membership fee per country. The Swedish museums have to be notified that every museum should be an institutional member by itself and consequently due for the annual fee.

Rolf Demmerle points out AEPM has to formalize its existence according to German law. A so called ‘Eingetragener Verein” will simplify the payment of contribution for those members that are dependent on state or city funding. Roger Münch explaines how the Internationaler Arbeitskreis Druck- und Mediengeschichte (IADM) had to do the same some years ago and used a combination of “Eingetragener Verein” and “Förderverein”. The meeting approves that Rolf will contact Roger on this point to work out details and take the necessary steps.

Item 5: Office

The office, already mentioned under Item 1, is a necessary instrument, as past years have shown. If possible, it should be the back-office of the respective chairman. If this is not possible, a competent person with secretarial skills and, in any case, English speaking has to be appointed. To have the burden and the amount of time needed for this work reduced, see Item 6.

Item 6: Newsletter

Eva offers to take over editing the newsletters. The input should be achieved in two ways: electronic news and information will be gathered by Sascha and conferred to Eva’s e-mail address. All institutions are asked to include into their mailing lists for invitations and press releases. All printed invitations and information can be sent to Eva directly. Please add her private address in your mailing lists: Eva Hanebutt-Benz, Gartenstrasse 18, D-60594 Frankfurt/Main.

From this material a newsletter can be composed, that will be more comprehensive and more frequent than before. All members are urgently requested to contribute in this practical and time sparing way. The assembly approves of this unanimously.

The Europe-Guide of Printing Museums will be put on the internet, linked to both the homepages of AEPM and IADM. Roger will make a proposal for a printed version, which could then possibly be sponsored by AEPM.

Item 7: Introduction of new members

Johan lists and welcomes the new members. Robin Boone (MIAT museum in Gent, Belgium) introduces himself; Susanne Richter already introduced herself before giving her lecture on Saturday. Other new members are the Drukkerij Museum in Meppel, The Netherlands, and the Internationales Zeitungsmuseum der Stadt Aachen, Germany.

Item 8: Election of the new board

From the old board Johan, Ervin, Eva and Monika, having served one, two or more periods, resign. Alan, Rolf, Stephen and Sascha are willing to continue. One of the attendants complained about the absence of some board members and board members-to-be.

As new candidates are proposed: a representative of the Belgian museum MIAT and a representative of the Museum Plantin-Moretus in Antwerp (by letter of intention). During the meeting Stephan and Hans-Ulrich of the Offizin Parnassia are invited to represent the workshop-members in the new board. They will take this proposal in consideration and decide within reasonable time.

Stephen offers to be the new president for the next two-years term, Rolf stays treasurer, Sascha will continue as webmaster. The new board will have to appoint a vice-president.

The new board is accepted by all attendants by acclamation.

Item 9: Election of new auditors

Election of new auditors will only be possible when the new board is definitely constituted.

Item 10: Future projects

So far the working groups did not take up their respective work, as a lack of results seems to show. All colleagues are too busy with their tasks. We have to rely more on the capacities of the retired colleagues.

Andrea de Pasquale, Bodoni-Museum Parma, will take up the making of an inventory and digitalizing his collections of Bodoni´s punches, matrices, books and other material and will report on it. Cooperation is going on already, involving James Mosley. It still has to be investigated how AEPM can play a role in this project.

The University of the West of England has worked out a European project on a time-line for developments in the graphic industry, helping to point out these milestones in printing history and thus facilitating graphic museums with their collecting strategy.

Eva announces to take up her census of wooden presses (both old ones, models and reconstructions) in German speaking countries, being in contact with Guy Hutsebaut of the Plantin-Moretus Museum in Antwerp, Frans Janssen (The Netherlands), James Mosley (England) and others. She will give a report in time. This report will be under the aegis of AEPM.

Item 11: Time-table and theme for future meetings and choice of the next meeting place

Stephen invites AEPM for the next general meeting to Bristol. Appointed date would be the first half of September 2012.

Members are asked for suggestions where an intermediate meeting could take place in 2011. An attractive and important exhibition or event would give a good reason to meet again.

Item 12: Miscellaneous

No one has to add to the items discussed.