The first of our series of seven exhibitions opens in THe Shed tomorrow. The co-curator of Remembrance 100 Mark Gibbs is our guest blogger today who shares his expereince of creating an exhibit from such thought-provoking subject matter.
Remembrance 100 6 Nov- 23 Nov
A big part of my job is to build connections between schools and Tullie House, so I’m delighted with how Remembrance 100 has turned out. It’s a show in Tullie’s new experimental Shed space, where we try to do displays differently. The project is a partnership between the Museum and Trinity School in Carlisle. It combines student artwork, powerful artefacts, a web based archive and an interactive peace wall. Continuing the theme of collaboration, I’ve enjoyed working closely with the Curator of Social History Edwin Rutherford.
The background to the show comes from Tullie’s interest in marking the 100th
anniversary of the War’s outbreak, and the research two Trinity teachers carried out. Trinity’s Head of History, Linda Hodgson and maths teacher Sarah Lee-Adamson researched the service history of the school’s old boys who were killed in the First World War. Through this they found three names not recorded on the school’s memorial plaque, and so these were added in a dedication service led by the Bishop of Carlisle this October. Their research is recorded in Trinity’s Memorial website
, which visitors can access in the show or at home. The school’s year 9 (13-14 year olds) were then asked to design an image to use for the invitations to the event.
|Eloise helping out
Remembrance 100 combines this display of 100 of these student artworks with artefacts from our collections, including a set of letters from Lance Corporal Joseph Hall, who was killed in action at Arras in 1917. We have his last letter home, family photograph and death notification telegram. This is powerful stuff which made a big impact on the group of eight Trinity students who came over to design the labels and information boards: ‘Our first impressions were indescribable’ said one student pair. That’s where the innovation comes in. One group of students designed most of the text in the show and a second group of six students came over to install the show – Museum Assistant Eloise Stott helped us to put the display up making sure everything was level – no mean feat with 100 small artworks!
So Remembrance 100 is a jointly curated show, with student artworks, powerful stories,
and the Memorial website providing a digital element. There’s also an interactive part; a peace wall where visitors are encouraged to think how we can all promote peace, and post that thought on the wall. Suggesting perhaps that Remembrance can be active, and continuing the interest that Tullie has already shown in conflict resolution with the Living Wall display, in the Roman Frontier Gallery (this reminds viewers that border walls are still very much part of our world). It also connects with the debate on the ethics of war themed toys in our current Wargames show.
A short documentary film will provide a permanent record of the show.
|Filmaker Paddy preparing for the big shot
Secondary and post 16 Learning Officer