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Slavery “could be happening next door to you”

19 April 2016 by Sarah

King Street, Whitworth, Rochdale (c) Amy Romer

King Street, Whitworth, Rochdale (c) Amy Romer

Amy Romer is the author of The Dark Figure*, a photo project that documents modern neighbourhoods in the UK where men, women and children have been enslaved recently. She is our guest blogger this week: Read more…

Bainbridge Island’s Japanese American community

18 April 2016 by Sam

picture of a girl behind rows of barbed wire

Depiction of a girl on the Bainbridge Island Japanese American Exclusion Memorial © Lee Karen Stow

As part of her ongoing research for the Poppies: Women and War project, photographer Lee Karen Stow has travelled to America. In her latest blog post from her travels, she tells of an encounter with a woman whose life was turned upside down as a result of the Second World War:

“Unexpectedly, whilst visiting Bainbridge Island in America’s Pacific North West, I met Kazuko ‘Kay’ Nakao. Now 97 years old, Kay was one of 227 Japanese-Americans forcibly removed by armed US Army soldiers from their homes on the island one morning in March 1942, to be interned in concentration camps Read more…

60 seconds with Katie Roberts, Head of Events

15 April 2016 by Ann-Marie

katie resize

Katie Roberts, Head of Events, National Museums Liverpool.

Katie Roberts, Head of Events, talks about the importance of creativity and passion in her role at National Museums Liverpool.

Katie Roberts leads a team of 50 staff, who deliver approximately 250 events a year, with private dining and Christmas celebrations showcasing the events portfolio. As well as delivering intimate events including private views and drink receptions, Katie and her team co-ordinate and promote the stunning spaces for corporate and private hire within six iconic venues at National Museums Liverpool.  Read more…

When Elisabeth Vigée Le Brun met Emma Hamilton

15 April 2016 by Xanthe

painting of a woman holding a tambourine

‘Lady Hamilton as a Bacchante’ by Elisabeth-Louise Vigée Le Brun

We know quite a lot about Vigée Le Brun’s portrait of Emma Hamilton, and what she thought of Emma, because in the mid 1820s, towards the end of a long painting career of more than 50 years, she decided to write up her diaries and publish them as memoirs in 1836-37.

Vigée first met Emma when the artist arrived in Naples in 1790, having fled Paris with her 9 year old daughter, at the start of the French Revolution in 1789. Vigée was given refuge by the Queen of Naples, the sister of the French Queen Marie-Antoinette, whose favourite portrait painter was Vigée. When she fled Paris she left her art-dealer husband, Jean-Baptiste Le Brun, behind to protect the family house and studio contents. He was later forced by the French Revolutionary government to divorce her to retain their property. She spent the next 12 years travelling around the courts of continental Europe visiting cities in Italy, Austria and Russia, making a successful living by painting portraits of royalty, aristocrats and their courtiers.  Read more…

Hillsborough tributes join Museum of Liverpool collection

14 April 2016 by Laura

Two people and painting

Artist Christian Hook and actress Sue Johnston with the painting

Two new objects, which have recently joined the Museum of Liverpool’s collection, have gone on display to mark the 27th anniversary of the Hillsborough tragedy (15 April). Read more…

Open House

13 April 2016 by Megan

The latest art exhibition at Sudley House by a group service users from Mersey Care NHS Trust is called ‘House’ and has been inspired by what the term ‘house’ means to them. Read more…

House of Memories Armed Forces Days

13 April 2016 by Mitty

A suitcase containing objects associated with the Army such as a kit bag, documents and Army Dress cap

Army themed memory suitcase

For the last few months I’ve been working on a very exciting new project in connection with the Museum of Liverpool’s award winning House of Memories. The programme has helped thousands of healthcare professionals and family members increase their understanding of how to support people with dementia to live well with dementia.

My role is to work with the Armed Forces community to develop a new strand of House of Memories, funded by the Armed Forces Covenant. This has involved a great deal of consultation with people to ensure we are making the experience as relevant as possible.  Read more…

Why do we treasure Treasure?

12 April 2016 by Liz

Roman coins

The Roman Treasures of Cheshire, on display at the Museum of Liverpool until 19 June, are two examples of deliberately buried hoards of precious objects – hidden for safekeeping and never collected.

The Malpas Hoard consists of 7 gold alloy iron age starters and 28 silver alloy Roman denarii.

The Knutsford Hoard consists of 101 silver alloy Roman denarii, two copper alloy Roman sestertii, two finger rings, three gilded silver brooches, and pottery.

Both these groups of objects qualified as ‘Treasure’ under the Treasure Act (1996), being objects or more than 2 coins which are over 10 per cent precious metals. Read more…

Liverpool and the American Civil War

12 April 2016 by Sarah Starkey

Photograph of Captain Semmes on board the ship Alabama, 1863.

One of our rare photographs taken on board the Liverpool built Confederate ship Alabama, 1863.

This week sees the anniversary of the beginning of the American Civil War on 12th April 1861.  At first glance not a topic that has much to do with Liverpool.  However, because of the economic and global environment of the time, especially the importance to Great Britain of cotton, Liverpool played a major role in the conflict. Read more…

Diverse, thought provoking and celebratory – curating the John Moores Painting Prize

11 April 2016 by Lisa

Jurors discussing the paintings during stage 2.

Jurors discussing the paintings during stage 2.

The final stage of judging for the John Moores Painting Prize drew to a close last week, so I caught up with artist and juror Phoebe Unwin, to get an insight into the judging and her thoughts on the final exhibition:

What has it been like for you during the final stage of judging?

It was a full-on couple of days, looking long and hard at each work… I don’t think I have ever been in a room surrounded by so many paintings! Read more…



About our blog

Welcome to the National Museums Liverpool blog! Written by our staff and volunteers, we’ll give you a peek behind the scenes of our museums and galleries.

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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.