Oriental Museum’s young curators earn Parliament visit
(30 July 2012)
Local teenagers working on an exhibition at Durham University’s Oriental Museum as part of the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad attended a prestigious event in the Houses of Parliament.
Sixth-formers working on the “Stories of the World” project attended an Arts in Parliament event to showcase their current exhibition ‘Made in China: Exports and Experiences’. The exhibition is on display at the Oriental Museum until 16th September 2012.
They had the opportunity to talk to MPs, peers and members of the arts sector under the ancient beams of Westminster Hall, when they visited London in July 2012.
‘Made in China: Exports and Experiences’, explores relations between Britain and China from 1500 to the present day. As part of the project students have explored the internationally important Chinese collections at the Oriental Museum, looked at material found during archaeological excavations in Durham City, now housed in the Old Fulling Mill Museum of Archaeology, and explored the archives in Palace Green Library.
The students have also spoken to members of the local Chinese community to gather their memories. The resulting exhibition ranges from early European maps of China to an English bishop’s chopstick holder; from porcelain to beer mugs and Olympic mascots.
Craig Barclay, Curator of the Oriental Museum, said: “This exhibition explores the diverse range of objects and experiences that link Britain and China. The young people involved have committed a huge amount of their time at weekends and during the evenings over a year or more. The exhibition they have created reflects the hard work and creative thinking that has gone into the project.”
The London 2012 Cultural Olympiad project, ‘Stories of the World’, invites young people, aged 14-25, into museums and art galleries to reinterpret their collections in new and inspiring ways.
The Oriental Museum is open from 10am to 5pm Monday to Friday and noon to 5pm at weekends and on bank holidays. Entry to the museum is £1.50 for adults, 75p for children (five-16) and Over 60s, and free for children under five and students. For more details visit www.durham.ac.uk/oriental.museum or phone 0191 334 5694.