Meet the artists – Saturday 20th October

There’s now less than 10 days left to see our ‘Mind the Map’ exhibition!

Along with an incredible range of maps from our historic collection, the exhibition also includes some fantastic newly commissioned artworks. This includes works by Susan Stockwell and Agnes Poitevin-Navarre, whose artworks were created through contributions from members of the public.

Agnes Poitevin-Navarre asked Londoners for their response to the question ‘Where do you hope to be?’, from which she created her amazing artwork ‘The Land of Hopeful Commuters’.

Susan Stockwell collected used transport tickets from people all over the world from which she created her beautiful artwork ‘Memento’.

Both artists will be in the Museum’s galleries this Saturday 20th October from 3-4pm. Along with seeing their artworks you’ll have the chance to speak to the artists about their approach.

 

 

 

North, South, East, West

This is the final instalment in our series of Poster Parades linked to the Mind the Map exhibition, curated by the Museum’s Young Consultants and installed by our wonderful interns Siggy and San. For this display we’ve mapped London through posters. From north to south and east to west, these posters present and promote some of the fantastic places and attractions that London has to offer.

Transport posters have been used for well over 100 years, transport posters to highlight London’s leisure hotspots – from cultural landmarks and fine architecture through to fantastic open spaces. Londoners and visitors alike have been encouraged and inspired to use London’s public transport network to explore the city and beyond.

Where do you like visiting most in London?

    

Acton Depot Open Weekend Oct 2012 – First impressions of a new volunteer

As Sam Clift (Volunteer Coordinator) put it to me, what better way to ease my way into writing the volunteer blog than to attend the Acton Depot on the first day of the Open Weekend in October? So on Saturday 6th I reported at 10:30am sharp (having spectacularly underestimated how long it would take the Piccadilly line to deliver me to Acton Town), just in time for the volunteers’ briefing by Barry Le Jeune (Friends Chairman). I was surprised by the number of visitors already waiting for entry when I arrived, probably more than 50.

The amount of care and effort that had gone into the organisation of the event was impressive. I understand that these open days have been running for a few years now, which must help in their planning and execution. A large level of high quality volunteer activity was very obviously essential to the successful delivery of the Open Weekend, to the extent that this first blog post will concentrate on the overall feeling of the Open Weekend and next week’s will look more closely at some of the individual activities and contributions.

  

At 11 o’clock the doors opened, and immediately there was a rush on the LTM stand, not to mention the Friends’ stand and also quite a few of the other stalls as well. The better organised visitors obviously like to get their purchasing done early in order not to miss any rare items. Most noticeable was the large selection of A60/A62 stock artefacts and memorabilia for sale, and in the course of the day I saw many people carrying around luggage racks. Speaking for myself, I very nearly bought a destination screen unit, but consideration of how this might be received when I proudly unveiled it once back at home weighed against it in the end.

The depot soon started filling up with visitors, and by 12 o’clock it was looking really busy in some of the more popular areas. Obvious crowd pleasers were the bus rides, particularly (but not surprisingly) RM1, although RT1700 from London Bus Company also did sterling service; the taxi display and cab rides organised thanks to the significant presence and contribution of the London Vintage Taxi Association; the Acton Model Railway attracted a long queue of passengers as the day progressed, and the children’s activities on the mezzanine area was also noticeably busy.

  

Walking around the depot site I had the opportunity to speak to a number of volunteers and it immediately became apparent that they all have a great interest in the work of the museum, and a deep commitment to it. All were busy cheerfully dealing with the public, answering questions on every imaginable topic (I certainly surprised myself when I was able to help one man with his question about a Gardner bus engine). I’m quite sure that the unfailing helpfulness of the volunteers contributed greatly to giving the whole event its friendly and welcoming feeling – there was a great buzz in the air from start to finish.

Saturday was blessed with blue skies and warm sunshine, so many visitors ate outside at the back of the depot building in the rear yard, and a long queue soon developed at the hot snack van. I also saw several volunteers grabbing a quick tray of chips…!

Our visitors covered a diverse range, and a gratifyingly high number of families with children were present. It was very noticeable that in some the older family members were busy reminiscing, whilst in others, a youngster would be explaining an arcane point of detail to a bemused adult!

From about 4pm onwards visitors started to make their way home, the view along the entry road resembling the retreat of a victorious army as people carried home their prized purchases of all sorts, shapes and sizes. I had to remind myself that for many of the volunteers, the show would happen all over again tomorrow.

Dave Olney, LTM Volunteer

Project X – Ms. Claymore

Following on from our first Project X blog post about the show character Lady T, we thought we’d introduce the second female character in the production.

 

Ms. Claymore doesn’t exactly come out of the same stable as Lady T. Like Lady T she is strong, attractive and dominant as a character but her role is more functional.  As a child of, and believer in, the power of ‘The Administration’ she dresses in the utilitarian uniform befitting a parole officer.  Only her killer heels and tight fitting top hint at the dominatrix that may well lurk behind the rigid force of her beliefs.  She is not a lady to mess with.

Costume Designs created by Kevin Freeman. For more information on Project X, including videos and how to buy tickets, go to: www.projectx-london.co.uk

Project X – Lady T

We saw a lovely fashion photograph recently in the Mail on Sunday You magazine which rather reminded us of the costume that Lady T wears in Project X, which was designed by Kevin Freeman. But hold on, what exactly is Project X…and who is
Lady T?

Well, Project X is an interactive immersive theatre experience in which you have to solve clues, find characters and walk around. It’s a clever mix of time travel, murder and cryptic clues which combine with mysterious characters in covert locations who help you to unravel strange secrets! The Project X production is the result of a collaboration between the museum and tradesecrets, a company that specialises in producing immersive interactive theatre pieces. The experience itself takes place in the heart Covent Garden so Costume Designer Kevin’s brief for all the costumes was to place theatrical characters in an area that is populated with all sorts of wonderful brightly dressed people – some actors and some just hanging out and passing by.

Lady T is one of the many characters in Project X. She is a non-conformer and does not fit into the repressive future of 2101. Instead she is a tough, straight talking marketer who, having landed in 2012, fits comfortably into the more flamboyant aesthetic of Covent Garden where she is free to celebrate her individuality. We therefore wanted Lady T to evoke a quirky Dickensian street-seller feel. In doing so Kevin has managed to tap into current A/W 2012 fashion trends…maybe we can see into the future after all!

Lady T’s look is quite hard to miss – look out for her on Saturdays and Sundays – she might just, you never know, have something to sell…

For more information on Project X, including videos and how to buy tickets, go to: www.projectx-london.co.uk