Wikimedia CH/Call for projects 2017/Photographs at the Musée national de la Marine de Rochefort

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Legal name of organization or individual requesting this grant: Rama


Contact username: Rama


Project name: Photographs at the Musée national de la Marine de Rochefort


Please provide a detailed description of your project: Naval history is an important topic in Wikipedia, especially on the English-speaking one but also on fr:. To document historic ships, models are a very important source, especially for ships of the 17th to 19th century when so-called "arsenal models" were built alongside actual ships and served as archive documents (for instance see Trianon model collection). In France, the main institution with such models on display is the Musée national de la Marine, a branch of the Navy, whose headquarter is located in Paris at the Trocadéro, and has antennas in Brest, Toulon, Port-Louis and Rochefort.

We have substantial (if incomplete and perfectible) photographs of the models on display in Paris [1], Brest [2], Toulon [3] and Lorient [4], but almost none for the Rochefort antenna of the Musée national de la Marine [5]. Nevertheless, we can see that the museum holds pieces of interest [6] [7] [8]

The aim of the project is to remedy this sorry state of affairs and provide photographic coverage of the museum. Coverage will be as systematic as possible, with an emphasis on high-quality photographs (we do not expect the museum to allow the use of a tripod; this will limit the quality of the image, but the applicant has a significant experience in overcoming this impediment with ad hoc techniques) of technical character. Whenever possible, the images will be detoured in post-processing, as was done in these previous instances (for an idea of the improvement yielded by this technique, compared the model of the Prince Jérôme before and after processing).

As an aside, and as to maximise the cost-effectiveness of the project, we suggest at least three stops in the mission:

  • La Rochelle, which has an airport connected to Geneva, and features a maritime museum of interest of its own [9]
  • Rochefort, the main focus of the project
  • Paris, where the applicant may stop for a few days (accommodation may be provided for no charge) and take photographs in cultural institutions in need of such, for instance in the Middle Eastern and Egyptian antiquities of the Louvre, where considerable work remains to be done.

Please provide a detailed budget for your request: The only two budget items for the project are transportation and accommodation. We suggest

  • Transportation from Lausanne to Geneva by train; plane to La Rochelle (circa 100€)
  • Accomodation in La Rochelle (circa 80€ ?)
  • Transporation: TER train La Rochelle - Rochefort. (under 10 €)
  • Accomodation in Rochefort(circa 80€ ?)
  • Transporation: TGV train Rochefort - Paris (circa 100€)
  • Transporation: TGV train Paris - Lausanne (circa 100€)

Total: circa 500 €

Please explain what influence your activity will have on Wikimedia Projects:

  • Quantitative: Such photographic trips produce several hundreds of photographs per day. The highest-value ones (such as post-processed images of ship models) will illustrate articles on the ships in questions, and possibly on ships classes, naval battles or political events. In general, highly technical and specialised images taken in museums have a potential to be re-used outside of Wikimedia projects in academic papers and books, giving considerable audience to our projects and winning sympathy in highly relevant communities
  • Qualitative: The project will tighten the links between the Wikimedia communities in Switzerland, France and United Kingdom (the English-speaking naval history community having a considerable interest in such images and documentation).

How does your project fulfil WMCH's focus on GLAM, Education and Community programs? The project is expected thousands of images of museum collections.

Provide the provisional target start date and completion date: The project is quite free. The applicant expects to use up to 5 vacation days to implement the project. These can be set according to convenience (museum openings, temporary exhibitions, availability of other Wikimedians).


Provide any other information you believe helps to understand your project better: Can't think of anything at the moment but do ask if necessary.


Please note that only applications that have been completed in full will be considered.
If you are not able to submit your request via a wiki, please use the same template and send your proposal via info@wikimedia.ch.