Winnie-the-Pooh: Exploring a Classic

What

Museums & Galleries

For

All ages

When

11/12/2017 - 08/04/2018

Where

Victoria & Albert Museum

Cromwell Road, London SW7 2RL

Winnie-the-Pooh: Exploring a Classic

Opens 9th December

Tickets: £8

Winnie-the-Pooh: Exploring a Classic

Winnie the Pooh Hundred Acre Wood

The V&A are embracing families in South Kensington and this is their first big family show. Its aim is to make children really engage with the text (words and pictures) and it is cleverly done.

The exhibition starts with a display of merchandise and memorabilia. More interesting for mums and dads than children, I think I can remember playing with the 70s' fuzzy felt; while the miniature tea set presented to Princess Elizabeth and on loan from Buckingham Palace is just darling.

Winnie the Pooh Merchandise

The show really comes into its own for little ones as you turn the corner and are presented with a door that is very definitely only to be gone through by small people. It is of course the door at the foot of Owl's tree.

Winnie the Pooh tree Winnie the Pooh Rabbit

 

This sets the tone for an interactive exploration of the wonderful world of Pooh, in EH Shepard's familiar illustrations, life-size and 3D. Climb Christopher Robin's stairs and slide down the other side; walk over the Pooh Sticks bridge; squeeze into Rabbit's burrow and imagine the hole that Pooh got stuck in; listen to the stories inside the trunk of a tree in the Hundred Acre Wood.

 

And everywhere there are words. Big words, funny words, unfamiliar words. Sit in a dark room and see the words sliding up onto the ceiling from when Owl's house is blown over in the storm and Piglet has to be 'very brave'. Spin a word spinner and choose three different single syllables and sit down at the table and come up with your own magical nonsense. There is even a competition to enter - create your own original character, illustrate it and the wining entry will have their illustration framed and displayed at the V&A. Click here for more details.

Winnie the Pooh table

 

And while all this spontaneous engagement is going on mums, dads and older children can calmly walk round the beautiful artwork that lines the outer walls (the V&A was bequeathed the illustrations by EH Shepard). The reproductions are so familiar but it is a treat to see the original sketches, the pen and ink line drawings, the gradual introduction of colour.

Introducing the show, the V&A Chairman Tristram Hunt said he wants "to inspire the next generation of storytellers". If you have a mini wordsmith in your midst, do take them. It is a joy. 

Winnie The Pooh: Exploring a Classic runs from 9 Dec Book your Winnie-the-Pooh tickets here!

 

 

Winnie-the-Pooh: Exploring a Classic

Opens 9th December

Tickets: £8

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