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King of bling, Tutankhamun! Win a family ticket …

3 December 2010 by Dawn

While Dinomania is sweeping Liverpool, at the other end of the motorway Manchester is set for an acute attack of mummy-mania. The Museum of Museums (adjacent to the Trafford Centre) has unveiled its biggest exhibition, Tutankhamun – His Tomb and His Treasures, and is about to launch a series of family fun days.

The exhibition features over 1000 replicas of the treasures discovered in the tomb of the famous Pharaoh, recreating the splendour of the chamber as discovered by Howard Carter.  It’s an interesting approach from a visitor perspective because the replica objects are seen ‘in situ’. This is something that cannot even experienced in the Valley of the Kings, because the treasures have been removed and are safely stored in Cairo Museum. Read more…

Catalan visit

22 November 2010 by Sarah

people looking at document

Last week the Maritime Archives & Library had a visit from staff from a number of maritime museums in Catalonia.  The Barcelona Maritime Museum, which, it pains me to say, is in an historic building even more impressive than ours, is thinking of setting up an archive facility with public access and so came to look at our stores and public searchroom.  Needless to say they arrived on a classic Albert Dock day of driving rain and grey skies, but we wouldn’t want the British obsession with the weather to be undermined with a nice sunny day.

On their own – Britain’s child migrants

9 November 2010 by Sam

archive photo of 4 young children carrying suitcases

Four children bound for Fairbridge Farm School, Molong 1938. Reproduced courtesy of Molong Historical Society.

This week two museums at opposite ends of the world are unveiling the results of a major collaborative project about child migration schemes from Britain to the Commonwealth. Curator Ellie Moffat from the Merseyside Maritime Museum explains:

“Over the last couple of years we have been developing an exhibition in partnership with the Australian National Maritime Museum (ANMM) in Sydney. Tomorrow that exhibition, ‘On their own – Britain’s child migrants‘, opens at ANMM.

ANMM approached us a few years ago about collaborating on a project looking at the history of Britain’s child migrants, and this exhibition is the culmination of that work. The partnership has been very productive and engaging – if sometimes challenging due to the distance and time differences! Read more…

Art Merseywide showcases local talent

22 September 2010 by Sam

people discussing paintings on a gallery wall

Olwen McLaughlin, Editions Gallery, Liverpool, Louise Hesketh (Halton) and Chris Kerfoot (National Museums Liverpool) selecting works at the Wirral Spring exhibition, Williamson Art Gallery, Birkenhead

While the Biennial attract artists from all over the world to exhibit in Liverpool, the next exhibition to open at the National Conservation Centre on Friday, Art Merseywide, gives talented local artists the opportunity to show their work. With artworks selected from open exhibitions held in Liverpool, Halton, Knowsley, St Helens, Sefton and Wirral over the last year, Art Merseywide gives what exhibition organiser Louise Hesketh, of the Brindley Theatre and Arts Centre in Runcorn, describes as “a candid snapshot of the thriving local art scene”. Read more…

A Liverpool link at the Beacon

21 September 2010 by Sam

woman standing by a painting of sailing ships in a rough sea

Curator Charlotte Stead with the Walters painting at the Beacon

Ian Murphy, curator of maritime history and deputy head of Merseyside Maritime Museum, has been to see a familiar face and painting in Whitehaven:


“I had a chance to visit the Beacon in Whitehaven recently where one of National Museum Liverpool’s paintings is currently on loan. ‘The Port and Harbour of Whitehaven’ by Sam Walters was part of the Beacon’s recent exhibition on the port’s maritime heritage, and it was great to see it displayed in its hometown.

Whitehaven and Liverpool had a similar rise to prominence in the 18th and 19th centuries and there were close links between the two ports. For instance, the Brocklebank family were central to both towns, building ships in Whitehaven that sailed from Liverpool, and there were regular passenger services between the ports. It was natural therefore for Walters – a Liverpool based artist – to paint the busy Cumbrian port. Read more…

Nelson Mandela Day

22 July 2010 by Sam

2 women at a stall with International Slavery Museum publicity

Image courtesy of Berkeley White Photography.

Rebecca Watkin has sent this account of how she helped support a very good cause at the weekend:


“Hello. As a brief introduction my name is Rebecca Watkin and I am curator of transatlantic slavery at the International Slavery Museum. To mark Nelson Mandela Day on 18th July 2010, myself and Jessica Moody, research assistant from our Development Office, travelled down to the British Museum to represent the International Slavery Museum.

As Nelson Mandela is one of the museum’s Black achievers we were passionate about commemorating the 67 years that Mandela has been involved with human rights work. Visitors were invited to pledge 67 minutes of their time to charitable causes to mark this. Read more…

A Tale of Two Museums

7 June 2010 by volunteer

Last month, Mersey v’s (our Young Volunteers Steering Group) visited Manchester Museum to meet with their Youth Board. Caroline, one of our Mersey v’s has kindly shared her thoughts about the day …

group of volunteers standing in front of a Tyrannosaurus Rex in Manchester Museum

Members of National Museums Liverpool’s Mersey v’s and Manchester Museum’s Youth Board, making friends with Stan, the Tyrannosaurus Rex!

‘After their visit to World Museum last year with the Mersey v’s, the Manchester Museum Youth Board wanted to repay our invitation to visit with one of their own. On the 8th May, the Mersey v team ventured into the wide world to visit one of our neighbouring youth museum volunteer teams in Manchester. After a claustrophobic train journey (both Tranmere Rovers and Wigan Warriors were playing beyond Manchester), we arrived at Manchester Oxford Road ready to go to The Manchester Museum. Read more…

Discovering Paula Rego

25 May 2010 by Lisa

Inside of a contemporary art museum with paintings hanging on the walls

Exploring the ‘Casa das Histórias’

Earlier this month I got to visit Lisbon for the first time. Part of my excitement about discovering this new city, was the opportunity to also discover more about the Portuguese artist, Paula Rego. I’d read about her for the first time in a newspaper article before her dedicated museum, ‘Casa das Histórias’ (‘House of Stories’), opened for the first time at the end of last year. I was intrigued by her combination of innocence (e.g. ‘Little Miss Muffet’) and darkness (e.g. ‘Dog Woman’) and her representations of the experiences of women. Read more…

John Moores painting competition – Liverpool and Shanghai talk art

6 May 2010 by Sam

Following the recent founding of the John Moore’s painting prize in Shanghai, representatives from Liverpool and Shanghai caught up yesterday to discuss art in the UK and China and the running of the John Moore competitions.

From the Walker Art Gallery, participants in Liverpool were able to talk face to face to those in China via a live video conference link.

Angela Samata, Project Manager for the John Moores 2010 shares her thoughts on the video meeting:


I wasn’t really sure what to expect from a live video conference as I entered the empty gallery yesterday. I’ve used video conferencing before, but only within the UK, so the chance to link live with Shanghai was really exciting, but also a little bit nerve-wracking. Read more…

A trip to Nottingham with Hockney

12 November 2009 by Sam

photo of a contemporary gallery building

Nottingham Contemporary art gallery – home to the Walker’s Hockney painting for the next few months

Here’s a behind-the-scenes look at one of the aspects of the work that our staff are involved in, courtesy of handling and transport technician Paula Frew. This week Paula travelled to Nottingham as a courier to supervise the installation of one of the Walker’s most popular paintings, which has gone out on loan. Here’s what she got up to, in her own words:


“Monday morning at 7.30am I was on the train travelling to Nottingham to act as a courier for the installation of the Walker’s David Hockney painting ‘Peter getting out of Nick’s pool’ by David Hockney, which is on loan to the Nottingham Contemporary art gallery for their Hockney exhibition. The painting had travelled ahead of me, having been collected from the Walker on the Friday by Momart, who handle and transport art works nationally and internationally. Read more…

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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.