National Media Museum blog

We explore the science, technology and art of the still and moving image, and its impact on our lives.

A first for us, and a real treat for your kids (and you!) this summer

I’m currently working on a very exciting project, and a first for this Museum. Moving Stories: Children’s Books from Page to Screen is a brand new exhibition which explores the adaptation of children’s books for the screen, and it’s designed especially for families. It opens in July and runs right through the Summer holidays.

Our hard working Learning team deliver brilliant family events that tie in with our exhibitions, and our Collections all year round, but never before have we created an exhibition that – right from the off – is aimed at families.

Objects, messages, graphics, interactive experiences, and activities will combine to create a space in which children feel intrigued, inspired, educated, and entertained. We want our grown up visitors to feel the same, and (when no one’s looking) they might even be tempted to go rowing in our Lost and Found boat, explore Peter Pan’s treasure map or create a shadow scary enough to frighten the Gruffalo.

To help us create this wonderland, we’ve joined forces with Seven Stories, the National Centre for Children’s Books, based in Newcastle, who have lots and lots of experience creating exhibitions especially for children.

Seven Stories gallery

Seven Stories have an incredible collection of everything that goes into the making of a book – as well as books themselves, of course – which they’ll be bringing to Moving Stories: illustrations and artwork, correspondence between authors and publishers, manuscripts and typescripts*.

From Seven Stories’ Collection you’ll discover original illustrations from The Gruffalo and The Borrowers, and the typescript for Diane Wynne Jones’ Howl’s Moving Castle.

From our Collection you’ll encounter magic lantern slides, a photograph of the real Alice in Wonderland, and scripts from the BBC adaptations of Mr. Stink and Charlie and Lola.

We’ve also loaned objects from institutions and individuals such as the Disney Archive, the British Film Institute, The Roald Dahl Museum, Studio AKA and Passion Pictures (makers of the animations of Oliver Jeffers’ Lost and Found and Shaun Tan’s The Lost Thing), Axel Scheffler (The Gruffalo illustrator) and Nick Sharratt (illustrator of The Story of Tracy Beaker among many, many others), and Quentin Blake (come on, you must know who QB is!)

We are now entering the final phase of development, which involves finalising the gallery design, writing text, gathering images and footage, and tying together all the tiny parts that together make up our exhibitions – not forgetting the sprinkles of magic and mirth which will make you and your children love this exhibition as much as we do.

The build begins in June, so watch this space as there’s more to come as we reveal some of the colour-popping, kiddo-wowing Moving Stories gallery designs.

Seven Stories gallery

*I learned a little fact and I’d like to share it with you – manuscript = document written by hand; typescript = typed document. Pretty obvious once you know…

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About Anna W

I'm a Content Developer at the National Media Museum, I work with the curators and exhibition organisers to make exhibitions happen! I recently worked on the Life Online gallery.

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