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An insight into NML’s exhibitions

11 July 2012 by Lucy Johnson

The grand piano in the Rolf Harris exhibition

Thank you to Izzy Stubbs for helping out in the Exhibitions Department last week. Find out about what Izzy got up to:


As a 15 year old on work experience, I felt intrigued as to what duties I would have to carry out working within the National Museums Liverpool organisation. Over the week I have visited places like the Decorative Art costume storage where lots of clothes, pottery, hats, shoes, toys and more are stored. I especially enjoyed this area of NML because I am currently taking GCSE textiles and I feel as though seeing clothes from as far back as the 18th century has given me a greater understanding of the history behind the beautifully embroidered materials. I also visited the Lady Lever Art Gallery to see the current exhibition, A Pre-Raphaelite Journey (which I highly recommend) and the Merseyside Maritime Museum to see the Titanic exhibition - Titanic & Liverpool: the Untold Story. Even half an hour before closing time the exhibition was still bustling with people!

My favourite exhibition that I have visited this week would most definitely have to be the Rolf Harris exhibition, Can you tell what it is yet? This can be seen at the Walker Art Gallery.

Before I visited the exhibition I didn’t have much of an idea of as to what Rolf painted but afterwards had a wider knowledge! As soon I walked into the exhibition, I was blown away by the sight of the exotically painted grand piano – I was tempted to start playing it myself! Some of my favourite paintings are Snappy Snaps, St Ives (which brought back funny memories from the times I have visited), Greek Fishing Village, The Lion King – Uneasy Truce and Millennium Dawn.

What I like most about each of Rolf’s paintings is the way he paints the angle of light which makes us feel like were actually there with his pictures. Also, I enjoyed seeing “Rolf’s Studio” with the sculpture that had formed out of his paint pallet!

Overall, my experience working within NML has been brilliant and I have a clearer understanding of the different jobs within the Exhibitions Department and how much effort (which is a lot) is needed to make an exhibition happen. I definitely want to volunteer again in the near future and will certainly be taking my family to see the outstanding Can you tell what it is yet? exhibition!

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We try to ensure that the information provided on our blog is accurate and that appropriate permissions to use images have been sought. The opinions in each blog are very much those of the individuals writing.