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Museu Do Mar (museum Of The Sea)

São Vicente, Cape Verde

In 2013 the Instituto do Património Cultural initiates the project to install the Museu do Mar in the Replica of the Torre de Belém building. The process started with the help of pieces, the museological and museographic conception and culminated in the museum's opening on April 16 2014.

The permanent exhibition reflects the museum's vocation, that is, the history of the sea as an object of study, preservation and dissemination. Distributed over the various floors of the building, the exhibition is organized around themes that complement each other. This begins with brief descriptions of the historical aspects of the island's settlement and the Torre de Belém Building, as well as the presentation of examples of pieces related to the economy of the sea. This first show intentionally illustrates how the sea has shaped the islands' traditions and culture.

The sea museum also features some objects related to whale fishing, from the “New Bedford Whale Museum”, which testify to the economic and sociocultural link between Cape Verde and the USA with regard to emigration and industrialization of whale fishing .

The museum also exhibits a collection of underwater archaeological heritage, from the Archeology Museum, in Praia, representative of some shipwrecks that occurred in the mares of Cape Verde in the 18th and 19th centuries.

The intangible heritage is contemplated by the museum by obtaining testimonies from the community, in particular from sea professionals, recreating a symbolic universe reproduced over time and transmitted from generation to generation until the present day. It is a presentation about the knowledge, beliefs, myths and poems about the sea.

In addition to the permanent exhibition, the activities of interaction with the public are the key to the affirmation of the museum in the city. The activities carried out are focused on the student community, encouraging research, the preservation and dissemination of Cape Verdean cultural heritage, always combining awareness for the exercise of citizenship and the protection of the marine heritage.

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