About the Residency

During 2015, writer Aoife Mannix is working with local people, families, schools, and community groups in Portsmouth to create work inspired by ‘A Hard Choice’ exhibition at the Portsmouth museum . Creative writing from the residency is shared on this blog and will be published in an anthology. If you would like to be involved, please contact Aoife by email –aoifemannix@hotmail.com or Tracy Teasdale (tracy.teasdale@portsmouthcc.gov.uk), Learning Officer at the Portsmouth Museum, Museum Road, Portsmouth PO1 2LJ http://www.portsmouthcitymuseums.co.uk/

About the Writer

Aoife Mannix is the author of four collections of poetry and a novel. She has previously been poet in residence for the Royal Shakespeare Company, the Bronte Parsonage, Gosport Gallery, the London Borough of Camden and BBC Radio 4’s Saturday Live amongst others. She has performed throughout the UK and toured internationally with the British Council. She has a PhD in creative writing from Goldsmiths, University of London.

About the Exhibition

A Hard Choice: stories behind Portsmouth’s collections of art & design

14 February – 27 September 2015 at Portsmouth Museum

What do a Turner watercolour, a 13th century cosmetic jar and a gramophone painted by Dora Carrington have in common?

They were all acquired for Portsmouth Museums during the curatorship of Rosalinda Hardiman. A self-styled ‘Queen of Eclectics’, Rosalinda is a curator with wide ranging interests and knowledge. She has worked at Portsmouth Museums for 35 years and before that spent time at the Wisbech and Fenland Museum, Glasgow Museums and Galleries and Buckinghamshire County Museum.

The exhibition showcases the richness and diversity of Portsmouth’s collections and reveals the stories behind the objects on display. It also shares Rosalinda’s joy in museum collections and explores the hidden world of the curator.

Most of the objects on show were acquired for Portsmouth by Rosalinda; others have special significance for her. Fine and decorative art, Rosalinda’s chief interest, features strongly but objects from archival, archaeology, local and military history and natural science collections are also included. Some items have not been shown since the 1970s and some will be shown for the first time. The selection includes paintings, drawings, prints, sculpture, furniture, ceramics, glass, metalwork, textiles and taxidermy.

The exhibition is accompanied by a programme of events including talks, tours, master classes, storytelling, workshops, gallery trails and a creative writing competition for children. Visitors to the exhibition are invited to vote for their favourite object in our ‘Best in Show’ activity and three collections belonging to Portsmouth residents will be displayed within the exhibition in the Community Collections Showcase.


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