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An innovative approach

The unique appeal of this museum is that it places visitors at the heart of an interpretive journey, throughout the year, giving them the keys to a true understanding of the state of mind that fills the city's streets, once a year. After all, the traditional Ducasse festival is one of those events that completely transforms a place, for the duration of a weekend. At a time of ongoing globalisation, the traditional Ducasse festival represents the sense of identity that Mons locals get out of belonging to a local community.

Thanks to the staging of the museum's exhibits, the varied use of technology to aid in conveying information, and the selection of objects taken from local Mons collections, visitors can gain a good understanding and the opportunity to reflect on this unique form of heritage. It is an intangible heritage, which is defined by UNESCO as "the practices, representations, expressions, knowledge and skills that communities recognise as part of their cultural heritage, transmitted from generation to generation, constantly recreated in response to their environment, and which provides them with a sense of identity and continuity". The elements of the Mons event which have been cited by UNESCO match this definition perfectly. The public's enthusiasm and active involvement, the investment of time by hundreds of people who work all year long to enable this heritage to live on, and the continual transmission from generation to generation: these are just a few of the special qualities of the event nicknamed "Doudou".

More generally, the interpretive journey puts St George's fight against the dragon – referred to locally as the "Lumeçon" – in perspective, by discussing the need that humans have to create an imaginary realm to supplant reality as a way of responding to daily life. This original approach puts the legend of St George into context, with reference to various battles between heroes and monsters, in different eras and in all four corners of the world. The annual "Lumeçon" battle re-enactment continues to remind us of this opposition of good against evil today, and in the most remarkable manner.

A project co-funded by the FEDER and the City of Mons.


L'architecte Fabrice Sobczak explain the project (in french):






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