Tag: Museum

Bompas-Parr-opening-British-Museum-of-Food_medium_vga (1)

Bompas & Parr is delighted to announce the launch of the British Museum of Food, the world’s first cultural institution entirely devoted to the history, evolution, science, sociology and art of food.

Never before has the subject of food been explored so powerfully, with a series of exhibits that align with the quirky and disruptive style of the studio’s approach to communicating food and drink coupled with the ethos and values of a serious museum.

Opening for three months from 23rd-October, the museum is a proof of concept as it seeks a permanent home. Located in a building at Borough Market across two floors, Bompas & Parr is collaborating with the market’s managers, trustees and traders as well as a selection of different artists to initiate a new cultural institution for the capital.

Through its exhibits and experiences the museum aims to showcase the most exciting elements of food. Fundamentally it will seek to change peoples’ lives by helping them consider what they eat and to spread knowledge around nutrition and health and to recognise its role in culture. As it builds a permanent collection, it will seek to become a globally recognised national resource, a platform for experimentation and innovation, and a body that can advise government policy makers on anything related to food.

The opening exhibits manifest a variety of features that embody the museum’s motto of ‘From Field to Table, Mouth... and Beyond.’

- Be the Bolus: the Peristalsis Experience – an immersive digital journey into the body, following the path of food along the alimentary canal from the mouth, into the stomach and intestines, using footage obtained working with consultant gastronenterologist Dr Simon Anderson

- Choco-Phonica – a sonic wonderland focused on chocolate where visitors are asked to experience taste against the medium of sound, curated in collaboration with Space Doctors and Nathanael Williams Music with the advice of multisensory scientists

- The British Menu Archive – a selection of historical and beautiful menus, normally an ephemeral part of food culture but actually a revealing historical resource

- The Butterfly Effect – a walk-through tropical butterfly experience that tells the story of the unsung heroes of pollination in the context of global food security concerns

- Atelier of Flavour – a gallery showcase of food as art, with a focus on how different artists have used unusual materials to represent the English Breakfast 

Bompas & Parr is seeking charitable status for the museum and assembling a board of trustees ahead of seeking financial support to establish a permanent museum.

The studio focuses on multi-sensory appreciation of food and drink, acting as consultants to some of the world’s biggest food and drinks brands on new product development, promotional activity and other marketing initiatives for some of the world’s biggest companies (Diageo, Unilever, Facebook). It also collaborates with some the world’s foremost cultural institutions (ICA, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; MONA; Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew).

Previously the studio has developed a musical instrument that changes your sense of taste; created the fastest cheese trolley in the world (0-62 mph in 6.6 seconds); sent coffee into space (taken to 37km high and back); and cooked ribeye steak on 2,100°C molten lava. In the basement of the museum, it already operates Alcoholic Architecture, featuring a breathable cloud of cocktail.

Harry Parr, partner of Bompas & Parr and a founder trustee of the museum, said: “Around the world there are various museums devoted to specific items of food and drink, such as herrings and absinthe, but nowhere has an institution been created that seeks to embrace this crucial part of human existence.

“This has long been an aspiration of the studio and we’re delighted to have been able to assemble a stellar cast to help us bring this to life. And where better than the spiritual home of London’s food culture?”

Keith Davis, MD of Borough Market, said: “We’re delighted to support the British Museum of Food. Our long heritage has seen the market’s traders embrace change over the centuries and it’s a fitting tribute to our culinary contribution to the nation that the first ever museum devoted to this necessity for life has found its first home at Borough Market.”

On Tuesday 19 May, Sir John Soane’s Museum will publically open Soane’s private apartments and Model Room, located on the second floor at number 13 Lincoln’s Inn Fields, London.  The apartments, open now after being fully restored, have not been seen by the public in over 160 years.  The second floor includes Soane’s Model Room, Bedroom, Bathroom, Book Passage, Oratory and Mrs Soane’s Morning Room.

Soane’s Private Apartments and Model Room will open to the public from Tuesday 19 May 2015. Access is only available through pre-booking. For more details about how to visit and to book, please see the Museum’s website: www.soane.org

John Soanes private apartmentsImage credit: View of the Model Room, recreating a watercolour of the room c. 1834-35


unnamed-1Image credit: The blue-and-white china displayed on the mantlepiece in the Bath Room, which presumably belonged to Mrs Soane. The china was only rediscovered in the 1980s, having been moved after sustaining damage during the Second World War


unnamed-2Image credit: The chimneypiece in Soane's Bath Room

V&A Friday Late: Shoreditch Takeover

For July’s Friday Late the V&A will house the latest in a series of community takeovers, as artists and designers based in Shoreditch take up residence in the Museum for one night. Members of Shoreditch’s established creative and technology communities will present a programme of installations, music and workshops. For the first time, Friday Late will continue outside of the V&A for an extra evening, relocating to the BL-NK space on East Road in Shoreditch for a range of talks, workshops and performances on Saturday 26 July.

On Friday Campus, Google's Shoreditch space for startups, will be recreated in the Museum with an Entrepreneur Speed Dating service. Campus will offer the chance to be among the UK’s first to try out Google Glass in a specially set up Glass Photobooth. Startups working from the space will talk about their concepts, from pet matching service Borrow My Doggy to short term home finder Flat Let and company founders will be on hand to workshop new business ideas.

Online music and radio streaming service Mixcloud will present a plethora of guests in the Grand Entrance and John Madejski Garden for a range of specially-curated podcasts, music mixes and radio shows. Two episodes of Music Nation, a five part documentary series screened online by Dazed and commissioned by Channel 4, will be on show in the Lydia and Manfred Gorvy Lecture Theatre. The first screening, Jungle Fever, explores the UK’s vibrant jungle music scene, featuring interviews with artists Fabio & Grooverider, DJ Hype, Kenny Ken and Broackie. The episode is followed by Brandy & Coke, in which photographer and author Ewen Spencer charts the story of UK garage.

Elsewhere, installations will include will a series of woodcut sculptures by street artist Malarky, whose work often appears in the Shoreditch area, and artwork by digital artist Nicolas Sassoon. Sasson’s work Pandora explores the representation of everyday space through computer based processes and appears in the form of animated GIFs. The work is presented by Opening Times, a digital art commissioning body for artworks which are presented online.

Shoreditch design studio Method will demonstrate their Drawing Machine, which will analyse the patterns of prints in the V&A collection and translate them into a series of digital drawing instructions. Visitors can interpret the instructions by drawing out William Morris patterns onto a bespoke canvas. In the Paper Wearables workshop, Designwarm will lead a workshop inspired by wearable technology, with visitors invited to make their own DIY futuristic product.

On Saturday at BL-NK there will be music from Mixcloud, plus another chance to take part in the Paper Wearables workshop and to see work by Malarky. The programme of talks will include V&A curators speaking about the Museum’s computer art collection, digital design, and the newly launched Rapid Response Collection gallery.

25 July 2014 at the V&A; 18.30 – 22.00
26 July 2014 at BL-NK; 17.00 – 23.00
Admission Free; some events may be ticketed


Coffey Architects have announced that they will be designing the new Science Museum Research Centre.
The new centre – planned to open by 2015 – will provide the Museum with a new kind of facility and enable a new level of integration between exhibitions and research. It will act as a portal to over 500,000 items contained within the Wroughton Library, including archive collections and original works, placing them at the fingertips of researchers, staff, academics and the general public.  
The new project will occupy the ground and first floors of the museum’s Wellcome Wolfson Building and is defined by two simple elements: the bookcase and the canopy. The bookcases create a warm and welcoming landscape for research. The canopy filters light and controls acoustics, creating a serene environment.
The main focus of the library is the central reading room from which all activity is orientated. A small stair provides a direct connection to the bright upper mezzanine with common room and staff areas while below the mezzanine, a timber-lined research bar and private study areas are located amongst the main bookstacks. The entire room is bathed with dappled light from thousands of small oculi set within the double height translucent canopy above.
Karen Livingstone, director of masterplan and estates at Science Museum Group, said: ‘We were hugely impressed by the approach of Coffey Architects, which proposes a light-filled, elegant reading room within the building.’
Practice director Phil Coffey said: ‘The scheme itself is a simple idea to recreate the feeling of sitting under a tree, on a summer’s day, reading a book. The proposed canopy will create light and acoustic conditions conducive for study, as well as offering a unique space with a strong identity to be enjoyed by both casual and academic users.’
The project is expected to start on site next spring.

JimW_RAM_Museum_9_jpg_360x240_q85 museums-at-night-logo-mediumMuseums at Night, the annual night-time festival of arts, heritage and culture, will take place this year over the weekend of Thursday May 15 – Saturday May 17, 2014.

Over three nights in May, during which time hundreds of museums, galleries and historic spaces all over the UK will open up late and putting on a dazzling array of special night-time events: from unique literary talks in castles to star gazing in historic houses; sleepovers in palaces to city-wide culture crawls; bands playing in amongst museum exhibits to science fiction life drawing in galleries. The Museums at Night festival offers the chance to experience culture and heritage in a totally unexpected way.

Some of the Museums at Night highlights in London include:

  • Horniman Museum & Gardens: Extremes Late, as Part of Museums at Night. Celebrating the opening a new family friendly exhibition Extremes, the Horniman reveals how artists react to extreme environments including hot music from Zimbabwee, extremely high acrobatics, storytelling by candlelight, surreal film screenings depicting submarine life.

In addition, celebrating ten years of their ground-breaking satirical artwork, the scurrilous, global cult comic artists Modern Toss will be putting on a very special evening for Museums at Night. The Modern Toss Late Night Activity Centre will feature a live drawing event F***YEUX Tapestry, which will see Modern Toss creators Jon Link and Mick Bunnage try to break their previous world record for the longest single panel cartoon with the word 'fuck' in it. Just turn up, they’ll supply the pen. There will also be an opportunity to experience what it feels like to be a cartoon character in a Modern Toss cartoon, and the Interactive Periodic Table of Swearing – press a button and it swears right back at you.

  • William Morris Gallery: Mr Smith's Letterpress Workshop. Under the expert guidance of Kelvyn Smith, aka Mr Smith, visitors will be treated to a dramatic performance of one of Morris's socialist chants before using traditional type to create their own political slogans.
  • RAF Museum, Hendon: Public Service Broadcasting.

London-based musical duo, Public Service Broadcasting are to play three exclusive gigs in a secret location at the RAF Museum in Hendon, North London, in what will undoubtedly be one of the highlights of the Museums at Night festival. The RAF Museum will provide a fitting and atmospheric backdrop for the band who weave samples from old public information films, archive footage and propaganda material around their electronic set.  Also on the night, visitors can help knit a life-sized plane or dance to the Silent Disco in the shadow of an RAF Lancaster Bomber.

  • London's Kensington Palace is throwing open its doors for a very special Museums at Night sleepover for children aged 7-11. Join us for the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to become a Prince or Princess and enjoy an exclusive slumber party in a Royal Palace.
  • Guildhall Art Gallery and Roman Amphitheatre. Stressed out Londoners will be given the opportunity to grab forty winks at The Big Power Nap,  (Friday 16May) which will be transforming the Undercroft gallery – the ruins of London’s Roman Amphitheatre - into a 2000 year old chill-out zone with ambient sounds and a roving masseuse on hand to provide a relaxing break from the buzz above. Meanwhile in the upper galleries, there will be cherub themed art installation – members of the public are invited to come and take part.
  • Petrie Museum of Egyptian Archaeology: It's a Murder at the Museum. An evening of intrigue and subterfuge await visitors as they solve clues across the Museum to crack the UCL Museum murder mystery. As well as a prize for the team who solves the case, there are prizes for the best dressed detectives, with a drinks reception in The Grant Museum.
  • National Portrait Gallery: Late Shift Extra: In Parenthesis. In partnership with the English National Ballet present a dance performance at the Gallery inspired by David Jones' seminal poem of the First World War, In Parenthesis. Choreographed by George Williamson, the performance includes ballet and contemporary dance performed across the Gallery.
  • London Transport Museum: Friday Late: Goodbye Piccadilly. Experience London life in 1914 at the opening of new exhibition "Goodbye Piccadilly - from home front to Western front" and find out the role London buses and bus drivers had in the First World War and how the city prepared for war. Fashionistas can explore the perfumes worn by the smart set `at a perfume workshop by Odette Toilette and create their own feathered fascinator with Spitalfield favourite Lulu O'Neil of Slightly Scarlett.
  • Brunel Museum: Theatre of Blood, Dance of Death, Drink of Life. Pandemonium Theatre present their reinterpretation of Hecuba & Titus Andronicus in a dark place, the underground chamber where six men died and Brunel nearly drowned. Take part in Tango and Dance workshops and enjoy cocktails at the Midnight Apothecary, the legendary roof top pop-up cocktail bar.
  • Bank of England: Banknotes and Bullion. This rare opportunity to visit the Bank of England Museum after hours also gives visitors a unique chance to try lifting a genuine gold bar weighing 13kg. Experts will also be on hand to talk about Bank of England notes, gold and any other questions visitors have.
  • Firepower, The Royal Artillery Museum: Ghosts of the Royal Arsenal. The Royal Arsenal has a history of unfortunate events dating back hundreds of years. Visitors who are feeling brave can follow a guided tour around the site and find out why battle-hardened soldiers refuse to enter the Academy Building alone and why the staff at Firepower won't lock up alone. Banish the chill away with bangers and mash and a hot cup of tea or coffee at the end of the tour.
  • Somerset House: Museums at Night. Following its success in previous years, Somerset House once again opens its doors for visitors to enjoy exhibitions and displays and participate in workshops, tours and screenings, all accompanied by live music in the Seamen's Hall.
  • Natural History Museum: Dino Snores for Grown Ups: The ultimate sleepover. Anyone who's ever wondered what happens when the doors close in one of the world's most famous museums will find this an irresistible opportunity to find out! An unforgettable night of music, art, science and cinema - just don't forget to bring your sleeping bag.

Over two nights (15-16 May) many of the 13 Museums represented on a route stretching from Aldwych to Kings Cross will be opening their doors after-hours to the public, and pre-booked walking tours run by ‘In Midtown’ will move between selected venues. Discover some of the many connections between the museums of the ‘Mile’ through the people and objects represented in their collections.

Events are being added on a daily basis but full listings for Museums at Night can be found at www.museumsatnight.org.uk.  For up to the minute news on Twitter follow @MuseumsatNight #MatN2014