Appointments

Dorset Natural History and Archaeological Society has appointed Claire Dixon as the new Executive Director of Dorset Museum. Dixon is currently Director of Museums and Deputy Chief Executive at Bath Preservation Trust and will take up her new post in July.

Florence Symington has been appointed Director of Brand & Audiences at the Royal Armouries Museum. Symington first took the role last October, having previously served as the Interim Director of Brand & Audiences.

The Foundling Museum has appointed two new leadership roles. Rosie Baker becomes Director of Commercial & Operations and Dr Clare Barlow has been appointed Director Programme & Audiences. The new appointments will join the Museum’s new Director, Emma Ridgway, as part of its senior management team.

Openings

Birmingham Museums Trust has announced it will reopen Soho House in June, to coincide with the May half-term holiday. The museum, which celebrates the life of industrialist and entrepreneur Matthew Boulton, will be open to the public for three days a week, as will Tudor house Blakesley Hall in the city.

Birmingham Museums Trust to reopen Soho House May half-term

Plans for the Museum of Shakespeare have been revealed, to be created in Shoreditch within the archaeological remains of The Curtain Playhouse, the site of some of Shakespeare’s first plays. It is set to open in Spring 2024, with no exact opening date yet revealed.

Plans announced for the Museum of Shakespeare in Shoreditch

Exhibitions

At the Science and Industry Museum, a new exhibition will bring to life CBBC show ‘Operation Ouch!’. The family orientated exhibition will see visitors “shrunk, swallowed, squeezed through and spat out of a giant digestive system” as it explores the inner workings of the human body. ‘Operation Ouch! Food, Poo and You’ opens 21 July 2023.

‘Brilli-ANT’ is a new immersive exhibition coming to The Story Museum in Oxford. It is designed to help children tackle climate anxiety, featuring giant cardboard insects by sculptor Lottie Smith. The exhibition invites families to put on a pair of ant antennae, and search for clues and stories developed in partnership with author Chitra Soundar and illustrator Barry Falls. Runs from 27 May 2023.

Compton Verney has announced a new exhibition featuring the work of illustrator Sir Quentin Blake’ (pictured above). On display will be original artwork for bestselling children’s books, hospital wards and exhibitions of Blake’s own paintings and drawings. ‘Quentin Blake: Birds, Beasts & Explorers’ features more than 70 works, all on loan from the artist’s personal archive. Runs 27 May – 1 October 2023.

An interactive and multi-sensory exhibition celebrating the punk rock of the 1970s is to open at Leicester Museum and Soft Touch Arts. Funded primarily by the National Lottery Heritage Fund, ‘Punk: Rage and Revolution’ will include fashion and artwork from the era alongside and will be accompanied by ‘Punk Weekender’ music festival held at local venues. Runs 27 May -3 September 2023.

‘Diving Deep: HMS Invincible 1744’ is a new interactive exhibition at the National Museum of the Royal Navy Hartlepool, which tells the story of the 18th century warship HMS Invincible, and the three-year archaeological project to recover the objects within. The exhibition uses photogrammetry, 3D reconstruction of the excavation and new techniques in underwater filming captured on a three-screen projection.

British neo-romanticism will be explored through an exhibition of 30 works from the mid-20th century in a free exhibition at the Fry Art Gallery in Essex. ‘A World of Private Mystery: British Neo-Romantics’ sees the gallery join forces with The Ingram Collection of Modern British Art to explore the movement. Runs 8 July – 29 October 2023.

The work of two groups of amateur calligraphers, whose work has been inspired by their visit to the Lindisfarne Gospels, will be exhibited at South Shields Museum & Art Gallery. The groups were given the opportunity to attend the Lindisfarne Gospels exhibition at the Laing Art Gallery in September 2022, and then spent several weeks creating individual responses to the exhibition, based on the question: What do you take as Gospel? Runs 22 April – 30 September 2023.

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