Imperial War Museum announces Centenary global touring exhibition

Posted on on 15 September 2014
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The Imperial War Museum is embarking on a new venture to display its First World War collection to a world audience.

More than 350 items will feature in a global touring exhibition, making its debut in Australia in 2015. 

The project is the first of its kind for IWM, which was founded in 1917 while the war was still at its height to collect and record the stories of the millions who served and died across Britain and its Empire.

The WW1 Centenary Exhibition opens at Melbourne Museum in Australia on April 17th 2015, just days ahead of the 100th anniversary of the Gallipoli landings.

Highlights include a sketch made at dawn on April 26th 1915, recording exactly what could be seen by the artist, Herbert Hillier, working from an observation balloon above Anzac Cove shortly after the troops went ashore.

Diane Lees, Director-General of IWM, said: "IWM’s collections bear witness to the ordinary and extraordinary stories of those affected by the war, and it is an honour to be able to share them with visitors across the world in this new exhibition.”

The displays draw broadly on the narrative of the Imperial War Museum's new First World War galleries, opened in London in July 2014 (above),  to tell the overall story of the conflict.

Visitors will come face to face with objects ranging from artillery shells and guns, to military uniforms and work clothes worn by the first female munitions workers, as well as personal diaries, letters and other artefacts.

A significant number of works of art from IWM’s world-class collection will also be on show, including paintings by William Orpen, CRW Nevinson, Paul Nash and many others. 

The Australian state of Victoria says Melbourne is honoured to have been chosen as the event's first destination. 

Minister for the Arts Heidi Victoria said: “This world premiere exhibition will be a powerful addition to the World War 1 Centenary commemorations here in Australia. 

"I have no doubt that visitors of all ages will be profoundly moved, informed and inspired by the experience."

Source: Imperial War Museum

Images: Centenary News

Posted by: Peter Alhadeff, Centenary News