Back to Front Weekend by Yinka Shonibare

31 March 2012 - 01 April 2012, 11:00 - 16:00

Ticket for indoor sessions £10 adults, accompanied children free

Two sessions daily: 11:00 – 13:00 and 14:00 – 16:00

Free outdoor entertainments all day

To book an indoor session call 020 7841 3600 or drop into the Museum.

Sessions and outdoor entertainments finish at 16:00 but the Museum will remain open for visitors until 18:00.

Be charmed and amazed as children and young people take over and run the Foundling Museum, transforming it into an 18th century fairground!

Conceived and directed by award-winning artist, Yinka Shonibare MBE, the Museum will be stepping back in time as children dressed in costumes of the period will be in charge of everything from acting as guides and selling tickets, to creating entertainments for visitors. They will be the teachers enacting lessons based on those taught to the original foundling children in the 18th century: singing, needlework, catechism and writing. The lessons will be attended by leading figures from London’s cultural community acting as pupils in their classroom.

Free day-long outdoor events based on the themes of the 18th century fairground, will involve puppet shows, magic demonstrations, music and family fun.

Yinka Shonibare MBE, describes the Back to Front Weekend as, “A deliberately contrary project in which the institution will literally be taken over by children. The Foundling Museum has historically provided children with education and accommodation, the Back to Front Weekend will present a shift in power relations between those who have traditionally used the institution and those who have run the institution.”

Yinka Shonibare, MBE, (born 1962) is a British-Nigerian artist living in London. Since the 1990s Shonibare has exhibited his films, photographs, paintings and sculptural tableaux internationally at leading museums worldwide including the Venice Biennale, 2001, and Documenta 11, Kassel, in 2002. In 2004 he was nominated for the Turner Prize, and he was awarded the decoration of Member of the “Most Excellent Order of the British Empire” or MBE. Most recently Shonibare’s work, ‘Nelson’s Ship in a Bottle’ was the 2010 Fourth Plinth Commission displayed in Trafalgar Square.

Yinka has been selected as this year’s Foundling Fellow in the visual arts, awarded in the name of Hogarth, alongside Dame Emma Kirkby as Handel Fellow, and Michael Morpurgo as Coram Fellow 2012. From projects with our Foundling Fellows Richard Wentworth, Damon Albarn, Cerrie Burnell, Julian Lloyd Webber, Grayson Perry and Jacqueline Wilson, to master classes with Emma Kirkby and Jamila Gavin; the Museum celebrates the vision of Coram, Hogarth and Handel and the dynamic relationship that can exist between the arts, child welfare and philanthropy.

The Foundling Fellowships are supported by the Clore Duffield Foundation.

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