The Her Stories: Celebrating International Women’s Day at Poole Museum

On Friday 8 March, Poole Museum will be marking International Women’s Day with the opening of a brand new temporary display.

The Her Stories Poole project has been developed by the Museum team to unearth the hidden stories of Poole’s women and present them to museum audiences. Using local history research, the Museum has worked in collaboration with artist Lorna Rees to develop an exciting temporary display that will be interspersed with the collection from 8 March until the end of the month. Students from Bournemouth and Poole College studying UAL level 3 Diploma in Art & Design were also invited to work alongside Lorna to transfer the stories onto fabric, using their creative skills to pick out key highlights and bring aspects of the research to life.

Councillor John Challinor, Cabinet Portfolio Holder for Leisure, Borough of Poole commented: “The fascinating thing about the research undertaken is that it highlights the significance of those people whose lives changed history on a smaller scale. Poole Museum has provided a great opportunity to share some of these stories and thanks to the creative talents of Lorna and the young people involved in the project the material on display is dynamic and eye-catching, encouraging all visitors to interact and engage.”

This project is the fourth in a series of collaborations between Bournemouth and Poole College and Poole Museum. In 2017 the Art & Design department worked on the HLF funded Sea Music project where students created responses in various media to the Anthony Caro sculpture which were also displayed at the Museum. In 2018 students were also involved in a digital photography project inspired by the summer exhibition Augustus John: Drawn from Life and in October 2018 the Dorset Art Prize Winners Exhibition was hosted in the Museum café.

Rebecca Rossiter, Public Programming and Learning Manager, Borough of Poole, said: “We greatly value being able to work closely with the college and hope that there will be many more opportunities to do so in the future. It gives local young people a chance to see their work on display in a public gallery space as well as being of great benefit to the Museum in terms of engaging with a younger audience. With Lorna’s added artistic direction contributing to the project, I’m really excited about the high standard of work that has been produced.”

Lorna Rees is Artistic Director of Gobbledegook Theatre, a multidisciplinary arts company which strives to 'render the familiar strange' for audiences, helping people to notice new things about the world. The company is based in Dorset, but work nationally and internationally. Lorna is passionate about coastlines, curiosity and Poole. She will be offering two informal guided tours of the display throughout the day on Friday 8 March as well as taking over the Museum’s Twitter feed, revealing more untold stories of Poole women.

The Her Stories Poole display can be seen at Poole Museum from Friday 8to Sunday 31 March 2019 during opening hours. Lorna’s free tours will run at 1pm and 3pm on Friday 8 March for approximately 45 minutes. Places can be booked in advance via Eventbrite (up to 15 in total).

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