27th of March 2020.
Day 10 of confinement.
The world today is facing a major health and economic crisis. People are being confined to their homes and the number of infected people is increasing daily at a very rapid pace.The economy is also slowing down: hotels are losing turnover, airlines are losing turnover (e.g. €150 to €200 million loss for Air-France, KLM - €100 billiards loss in total for all airlines companies), museums are closing their doors to the public, shops and other businesses are failing too. In many countries, all public events are postponed or cancelled. Major international events such as UEFA EURO 2020 or the Tokyo Olympics are postponed.
For a museum like SAMA, such a crisis has consequences: museum tours are cancelled, visitors decrease. It is also very difficult, if not impossible, to bring in new artists at the moment. Since all gatherings are also prohibited in the Netherlands it is more complicated for SAMA to organize events. Also the team has to work from a distance because of the government measures.
However, as the French writer Jean de La Fontaine would say:
"the reed bends but does not break!"
SAMA has the advantage of being a small organisation! Because of its flexibility, employees can work from home. Visits to the museum are suspended for a while, but other projects can be developed in parallel. Compared to a large multinational company, SAMA appears to be more agile thanks to its smaller staff, which is easier to manage.
For my part, as I am currently back in France, the internship continues in tele-working: I continue my project management and communication missions while staying at home. Thanks to social networks it is easy to communicate with the whole SAMA team and therefore it's easier to assimilate the tasks and missions to each one. Even if there is no physical proximity between each member of the team, meetings, online conversations are maintained to pursue the objectives. The fact that we are a small team allows us to better adapt in our organisation!
The SAMA team remains active even if it is from the four corners of the globe!
Museums are closed because of COVID-19 but there are other ways to share art like SAMA does. The advantage of a structure like ours is its flexibility: SAMA adapts during crises thanks to the virtual.
Don't dispair, the team will continue to publish content during this quarantine, always trying to make you discover our collection by different ways and keep you informed of our news and our projects in progress. Thanks to the internet and social networks SAMA remains agile. Even confined at home, with a good WI-FI connection, and a different management, we can keep moving forward!
As a student today it is difficult to assess how things will evolve even though there seem to be positive signs in China about the regression of the virus. I hope for a return to normal as soon as possible so that I can resume my internship in optimal conditions. Ideally, once the containment is over, I will be able to return to the SAMA HQ in the Netherlands and continue my intership there. I hope, activities will gradually resume and, even if there is still some fear, that tourists will gradually return. There will be a before and after COVID-19. This crisis will surely lead to a change of mentalities and why not allow new inspirations for street-art artists!
For the moment, stay at home, don't forget the barrier gestures in front of viruses, respect the safety distances and take care of yourself!