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Mandela: African necklace as act of defiance

16 December 2013 by Zachary

Beaded necklace

Nelson ‘Madiba’ Mandela, freedom fighter and former President of South Africa, was returned to his ancestral home of Qunu yesterday for a burial ceremony that was broadcast all over the world.

When Nelson Mandela appeared for sentencing in the South African Supreme Court on charges of treason in 1962, he wore a traditional Xhosa beaded costume as an expression of contempt and resistance against the illegitimate proceedings against him. This was captured in a famous picture by Eli Weinberg.

Read more…

Top ten Christmas gifts

13 December 2013 by Lisa

Christmas mugs in shop display

Can you hear a distant rumble and clatter in the background as you walk down the high street?

No, it’s not Santa coming early with his sleigh and reindeer – it’s the sound of Christmas shoppers starting to descend on the city!

But there’s no need to panic and get carried along with the crowd to all the ‘usual shops’ – let us help you to find something a little bit different.

You can either browse in one of the shops at our museums or galleries, or put your feet up at home and check out our online shop instead.

Remember to order from our online shop by 18 December to make sure you get your goodies in time for Christmas!

To give you some ideas, here’s our list of top ten Christmas gifts for this year…

Read more…

Last chance to see photographs by Martin Parr and Tom Wood

6 December 2013 by Laura

Woman in gallery

Ceri McCabe in ‘Every Man and Woman is a Star: Photographs by Martin Parr and Tom Wood’

This weekend is the last chance to catch ‘Every Man and Woman is a Star: Photographs by Martin Parr and Tom Wood’ .

The images provide an evocative insight into the local area between 1976 and 1987.  So we were really pleased to hear from Ceri McCabe, one half of the young couple in the lead image which gave the exhibition its poetic name. Read more…

Transgender Day of Remembrance

21 November 2013 by Kay

The wreath in the April Ashley: portrait of a lady exhibition

The wreath in the April Ashley: portrait of a lady exhibition

Yesterday, Wednesday 20th November, was Transgender Day of Remembrance. We laid a wreath in the ‘April Ashley: portrait of a lady‘ exhibition at the Museum of Liverpool to commemorate all those who have been murdered or taken their own lives because of transphobia.

Representatives from Armistead, Merseyside Police, Transforum, Homotopia and Trans-Chester joined visitors and staff in a minutes silence.
April herself suffered transphobia throughout her life, from family members, the media and also strangers in the street.
You can find out more about hate crime from members of the trans community and Merseyside Police in the exhibition.

Lusitania families’ event

8 November 2013 by Ellie

RMS Lusitania at the Liverpool Landing Stage in 1907

MCR/25/117 Image courtesy of NML, image not copyright NML.

At this time of year we pause to remember the contribution of British and Commonwealth military and civilian servicemen and women in the two World Wars and later conflicts.

With that in mind, Merseyside Maritime Museum is continuing to work towards marking the centenary of the sinking of Liverpool’s most famous ship, ‘RMS Lusitania’, in 2015.

On the 7 May 1915, while en route to Liverpool, ‘Lusitania’ was torpedoed by the German U-boat U-20 off the Irish coast near the Old Head of Kinsale. She sank in just 18 minutes, and 1198 men, women and children perished. The sinking sent shockwaves around the world, but her loss was felt particularly keenly in Liverpool – where rioting broke out against German-owned businesses.  A large number of the crew had strong connections to the city and many families were devastated by the event. “Lusi”, as she was affectionately known in the city, was held high regard by local people and had been a familiar site at the Landing Stage since her maiden voyage from Liverpool to New York in September 1907.

Each year Merseyside Maritime Museum marks the anniversary with a commemoration around our ‘Lusitania’ propeller, on the quayside across from the museum. Many of those who join us have family connections to those who were on board, and this year we met with people after the event to listen to their stories.

Lusitania propeller on the museum quayside

MMM.1989.159

On Friday 15th November we are hosting a follow-up event, and are hoping to see some familiar faces but also make new connections with local people who have family ties to ‘Lusitania’. If you, or someone you know, would like to come along then head for Learning Base 2, on the second floor of the museum, from 2pm.

If you would like more information then please email us at Lusitania@liverpoolmuseums.org.uk.

19 tonnes of mummified cats!

7 November 2013 by Ashley Cooke

Researchers from Manchester looking at cat mummies.

Researchers from Manchester looking at cat mummies.

This week colleagues from the Manchester Museum and the University of Manchester came to see the World Museum‘s collection of 95 animal mummies from ancient Egypt. Dr Stephanie Atherton and Dr Lidija McKnight both study mummified faunal remains and are members of the Ancient Egyptian Animal Bio Bank Project, which aims to promote the study of faunal remains by uncovering information relating to these creatures and the ancient culture that preserved them. Read more…

Calling all budding bug photographers!

1 November 2013 by Felicity

A Vapourer Moth, captured on camera by Laura

A Vapourer Moth, captured on camera by Laura

The World Museum Bug Photography Competition is back! Here’s Laura Carter, our Bug House keeper, with the details…

“We’re excited to announce that our bug photography competition is relaunching! You might already have a favourite shot you’ve taken over the summer, but it’s not too late in the year to still get some nice shots of our six, eight and many-legged friends. Read more…

A day in the life: John Moores Painting Prize

18 October 2013 by Lisa

Artist's studio

Chantal Joffe’s studio

Call For Entries for the prestigious John Moores Painting Prize closes on 25 October 2013 and Project Manager Angela Samata has been meeting with some of the jury.  It will be this group of artists/artistic directors who will make the final decision about who will win the £25,000 prize.

Here’s Angela to give us a behind the scenes peak at her busy day in London with Director of Art Galleries Sandra Penketh…  Read more…

Stepping into a Magic World…

19 September 2013 by Felicity

Magic on film

The film crew capture Amber’s performance on camera

Ever watched a magic trick and had the feeling that, if you could only see it one more time, you’d know exactly how it was done? Well, I can promise that even after multiple viewings, figuring them out remains incredibly… tricky. Read more…

April Ashley Private View competition

19 September 2013 by Lucy

Image of April Ashley

April Ashley: portrait of a lady opens Friday 27 September

Next Friday 27 September, April Ashley: portrait of a lady will open to the public at the Museum of Liverpool, in partnership with Homotopia.

We’ve had a sneak peek and it’s looking absolutely amazing, and well worth a visit.

April’s story is one that has captured the interest of many, ever since she was ‘outed’ as transsexual in the Sunday papers over 50 years ago. Since then, her life has been front page news on numerous occasions, yet her irrepressible character has carried her through, making her a true inspiration for many people around the world.

April was born George Jamieson in Liverpool in 1935, so it’s amazing that she’ll be returning to the city of her birth to see this exhibition dedicated to her life.

You could be there too to preview the exhibition before it opens to the public, at a special Private View on Thursday 26 September! We have five pairs of tickets available to win, by answering the following question:

Where did April have her gender reassignment surgery?

Please send your answer along with your name and telephone number to press@liverpoolmuseums.org.uk

The deadline for entries is Monday 23 September at 5pm, and winners will be notified on Tuesday 24 September.

Good luck!

 

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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.