Power of Stories exhibited at Ipswich Museum wins Temporary Exhibition of the Year award

Published12th May 2022

The ‘Oscars of the museums world’, the Museum and Heritage Awards, last night announced at an event in London that Ipswich Museums' ‘Power of Stories’ had won their temporary Exhibition of the Year award.

The Colchester + Ipswich Museum exhibition was a hit, attracting more than 24,000 visitors to Christchurch Mansion’s Wolsey Art Gallery from June to September 2021. Three spectacular costumes from Marvel Studios’ Black Panther movie were featured in the winning exhibition. The outfits of T’Challa, Shuri and Okoye sat alongside Marvel comics and historic museum objects, allowing visitors to explore how storytelling has shaped our lives through history and across the globe.

Power of Stories, was made possible by a community effort. Six Community Curators collaborated with the Museum’s team to create the exhibition, and a varied events programme with funding from Arts Council England was coordinated by Elma Glasgow, co-director of Aspire Black Suffolk, and in partnership with a number of local cultural organisations and many community members.  

The awards, sponsored by Chargeurs Museums Studio, celebrate innovative and ground-breaking initiatives from museums, galleries and heritage visitor attractions across the UK and overseas. The 2022 event marked the 20th anniversary of the industry-leading Awards.

Cllr Carole Jones, Ipswich Borough Council Portfolio Holder for Museums, says:

“What great news about this magnificent exhibition. It’s wonderful that this Ipswich Museum exhibition has been voted above some other excellent exhibitions from around the country at the Museum and Heritage Awards. This shows the quality of displays we bring to the town with the Colchester + Ipswich Museum Service and wewill be doing similar in future.”

After its success in Ipswich, Power of Stories recently began a tour of Suffolk museums following popular community demand for the costumes to stay in Suffolk. Supported by Suffolk County Council and Aspire Black Suffolk and with funding from Arts Council England each museum taking part in the tour will re-imagine Power of Stories to suit each venue’s space, culture and local stories.

Power of Stories will be displayed at the Food Museum in Stowmarket from 28 May to 9 Oct 2022, before heading to Snape Maltings in Aldeburgh in November.

Photo - From left to right – Melanie Hollis (Curator at Ipswich Museums), Elma Glasgow (co-director of Aspire Black Suffolk), Glen Chisholm (Community Curator for Power of Stories), Iszi Lawrence (comedian & show presenter)

Photo credit – Simon Callaghan