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Membership events


Paintings conservator Rebecca Kench. Image © Chris Mikami

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Past events  

Christmas spirit returns to the Lady Lever, December 2018

This year’s fun-filled festive event was a huge success, putting everyone in a Christmassy mood. Our attendees were treated to and could participate in carol-singing merriment. The delights continued into the evening with Christmas card making and craft workshops. Members were able to use their membership discount to snap up a range of lovely Christmas gifts in the Lady Lever shop. The Christmas event saw Laura Pye, our new National Museums Liverpool Director, say hello to members. Beyond the Christmas glow, the evening also offered a late night viewing of the Quentin Blake and John Yeoman, 50 years of Children’s books exhibition and the opportunity to meet Curator, David Moffatt. To tie in with this, the evening included storytelling sessions which had a link to the John Yeoman and Quentin Blake exhibition.

Double Fantasy - John and Yoko, June 2018

Members enjoyed an out-of-hours experience, exploring the story of iconic duo, John Lennon and Yoko Ono. Double Fantasy provides an in-depth insight into the creative and personal relationship between the power couple, as well as their Imagine Peace campaign. In a crowd-free environment, members could look closely at the various objects on display, including pieces of Yoko’s private collection, some of which have never been exhibited before.

Terracotta Warriors, April 2018

Members were offered an exclusive opportunity to avoid the crowds and explore the sell-out Terracotta Warriors exhibition. The event coincided with the recent introduction of additional treasures to the exhibition, notably the Golden Horse of Maoling. Members were able to discover the full collection at their own pace in a peaceful environment and could take advantage of their membership discount in the Terracotta Warriors shop.

Christmas at the Lady Lever Art Gallery, November 2017

The Christmas spirit was in full swing at our Christmas event, which included a festive craft workshop and a professional choir. The event combined Christmas cheer with a late night viewing of the exhibition, Model Image: Fashion and Photos from the 1950s, with Senior Curator of the exhibition on board to answer any questions. There was also a drop in session on offer, enabling members to see Wedgwood wonders up close. The drop-in style format of the event enabled members to pick and choose from the delightful array of activities on offer.

Members' Week, May 2017

For Members' Week this year we had 12 events in total. These events, which took place across most of our venues, included a tour of our Metals Conservation studio, a behind the scenes tour of our Entomology Department and an out of hours viewing of our new exhibition, Edo-Pop Japanese Prints. The members thoroughly enjoyed each and every event. As the programme is so varied there is always something to suit everyone!

Victorian Treasures, January 2017

Christopher Newall, a renowned art historian and curator enthralled the members with his introduction to this beautiful exhibition at the Walker Art Gallery. After a tour of Japan this collection of over 60 paintings, from our own collections, returned to Liverpool and were displayed in the Walker Art Gallery. Members were the first to see the exhibition as they were given the opportunity to see it before it opened to the public. Christopher talked about how the exhibition came about and gave more specific details on some of paintings included.  

Animal Mummies, November 2016

Members enjoyed a fantastic lecture given by Senior Curator of Antiquities Ashley Cooke on the new Animal Mummies Revealed exhibition, talking about the many mummies that we have in our extensive Egyptian collections. The lecture which took place in the Treasure House Theatre in World Museum, covered a number of different types of animal mummies including cats, jackal’s, crocodiles and birds. Ashley also spent time answering questions at the end giving members exclusive access to his knowledge, role and the developments in the new Ancient Egypt Gallery.

Members Week, September 2016

Members Week’ was a programme of exclusive events for our members to enjoy in September. In total there were 10 different types of events across all of our venues including; a tour of our textiles studio, a behind the scenes tour of our botany collections and an out of hours viewing of the John Moores Painting Prize exhibition. As the events were so varied it was a programme devised to suit all superbly delivered by our expert staff. Members were able to attend as many different events as they wanted. It was a week thoroughly enjoyed by all.

Lady Lever South End Galleries, March 2016

Members enjoyed the exclusive opportunity to see the newly refurbished South End galleries out-of-hours. After enjoying a complimentary drink, the Director of Art Galleries introduced the new galleries to the members and explained how it was restored back to Lord Leverhulme’s original vision. Many staff members who were involved in the project were also available on the evening to answer any questions. Since funds raised through the membership scheme contributed to the restoration of the new South End, this event gave members the opportunity to celebrate the completion of these outstanding galleries.

Treasures of the Walker, September 2015

After a complimentary drink in the café, members enjoyed guided tours of our fantastic collections in the Walker Art Gallery given by Visitor Hosts Emma and Matt. They walked throughout the gallery pausing to talk at some of our most interesting pieces which included ‘And When Did You Last See Your Father?’ by William Frederick Yeames and Emma’s favorite 'Isabella' by John Everett Millais. Members also had the opportunity to visit the new, temporary exhibition REALITY. Assistant Curator, Alex Patterson was on hand to answer any questions and give more information on the paintings.

Members' Month, May 2015

Members' Month took place during May and was made up of a full programme of 15 varied events for our members to choose from covering all of our venues. These events included tours of our Paintings Conservation Studio, a behind the scenes tour of our Botany collections, a presentation on our Ancient Egypt collections, a lecture on the Titanic and an early evening Old Dock Tour. Our Members enjoyed all of the events which gave them a real insight into what goes on behind the scenes in our museums and galleries whilst enjoying hearing from the curators themselves and the wonderful enthusiasm they have for their subject. Members could go to as many events as they wished, giving everybody the opportunity to explore collections that they are particularly interested in or alternatively collections that may not already know much about.

Lusitania: life, loss, legacy, April 2015

Our members thoroughly enjoyed the presentation delivered by Ellie Moffat our Curator of Maritime Community History. Not only did it include details on the fateful sinking of the Lusitania but Ellie also talked about the massive impact the sinking had on Liverpool’s community. After the presentation finished members enjoyed seeing the exhibition at their own leisure and enjoyed a complimentary drink in the Maritime Dining Rooms.

Festive Fun at the Lady Lever Art Gallery, December 2014

The Director of National Museums Liverpool kicked off this event by saying a big thank you to the members for all of their support. This was followed by a thoroughly interesting overview of the new Style from the Small Screen exhibition at the Lady Lever Art Gallery. The exquisite exhibition featured ten of the glamorous dresses created for the ‘Downton Abbey’ television series. Gowns worn by characters including the Dowager Countess of Grantham, Lady Mary and Lady Grantham were on display alongside a number of dresses of the same period from our own collections. After the introduction members were able to explore the exhibition at leisure, browse the gift shop and use their discount to get some gorgeous Christmas gifts or enjoy their complimentary drink and mince pie. The Cappricio Singers also delighted members with some festive songs throughout the evening and there was even an opportunity to join in with a Christmas sing-a-long. An evening thoroughly enjoyed by all!

John Moores Painting Prize 2014, September 2014

Angela Samata; project lead for the painting prize, gave a fantastic and thought provoking insight into this years entries and some behind the scenes information on the judging process. Members were led through the exhibition as Angela focussed on a number of pieces and in particular the winner. The evening was a great opportunity for members to ask questions on the UK’s best known painting competition and explore the exhibition at their own leisure in an out of hours setting.

Members' Week

Our members enjoyed a fantastic week long programme of events as part of Members’ Week. Members were invited to take part in 12 exclusive events across all of our venues and learnt some interesting and unusual facts on our collections for example, did you know that we own 3 of the 4 Wedgewood fireplaces in the world? One of the events was an out of hours viewing of the Grayson Perry exhibition; ‘The Vanity of Small Differences’. Pauline Rushton, curator of the exhibition, told the story behind of each of the tapestries which sparked a very interesting and lively debate on class and taste amongst members. Other events included a tour of the Paintings Conservation Studio, a talk on the Lusitania and a Big Art event for our family members.

The week was a great success with members giving us some really positive feedback saying they were made to feel very special a ‘part of a community’. They also said that they ‘will take away great memories’ and look forward to next year.

Turner: Travel, light and landscape, March 2014

Members enjoyed an in-depth introduction to our new exhibition at the Lady Lever Art Gallery Turner: Travels, light and landscape. Curator of the exhibition Charlotte Keenan explained how the collections on display are considered some of the most outstanding collections of Turner watercolours, paintings and prints in the country.  The evening was a great opportunity for the members to ask questions and get a unique insight into J M W Turner and the pieces included in the exhibition. After the introduction members were then able to explore the exhibition at leisure, in an out of hours setting or enjoy their complimentary drink at the café. 

'David Hockney: Early reflections' private view, October 2013 

Head of Art Galleries; Sandra Penketh and curator Linda Pitwood introduced this fantastic exhibition of David Hockney pieces.

The exhibition is a unique selection of paintings and prints and charts the development of Hockney’s style during the swinging 1960’s and the 1970’s. The Walker’s painting ‘Peter Getting out of Nick’s Pool’, which won the John Moores Painting Prize in 1967 is at the centre of this fascinating exhibition of an iconic British artist.

Earlier in the day a small group of members who preferred an afternoon event enjoyed a tour of the gallery. Linda picked out some pieces from the exhibition and gave a fascinating and more detailed insight into his work.

By Jove! It's Ken Dodd! Photographs by Stephen Shakeshaft, December 2013

Members enjoyed a unique and exclusive event on 3 December where they listened to an In Conversation between Exhibition Curator; Paul Gallagher and photographer Stephen Shakeshaft. Members were invited to take part and ask their own questions in what became a candid and amusing chat! It was interesting to get an insight into who Ken Dodd really was and the close friendship that developed between him and Stephen.

After the conversation finished, members were given the opportunity to explore the exhibition and Paul stayed to answer any further questions.

The event was hugely successful and as a result we hope to continue to offer more 'In Conversation' events in the future. 

The Drawings of Edward Burne-Jones private view, June 2013

Members were given the rare opportunity to see 25 works from the National Museums Liverpool collections too delicate for permanent display at this private view. 

Beautiful watercolours by Victorian artist Edward Burne-Jones were on display alongside drawings, preparatory studies and designs for stained glass.

'Bedford Lemere & Co: An Age of Confidence' private view and illustrated talk, February 2012

Bedford Lemere were renowned for their architectural photography and the London-based company photographed extensively in Liverpool and Wirral between 1870 and 1930.

Architectural historian Joseph Sharples was the special guest speaker at this special event at the Lady Lever Art Gallery.

With generous support from English Heritage, members were treated to wine and canopies before gathering in the Great Hall for a fascinating illustrated talk about Bedford Lemere and their work.

After a question and answer session, members were able to view the wonderful collection of photographs in the exhibition itself, including images of picturesque Port Sunlight 130 years ago.

'The Artbooks of Henri Matisse' private view, November 2011

Ann Bukantas, Head of Fine Art, introduced this event at the Walker Art Gallery by giving a fascinating overview to this exhibition of work from one of the 20th century's most famous artists.

Featuring key imagery from four of Matisse's artbooks, including 1947's famous Jazz, the exhibition explores a variety of production techniques culminating in exquisite but vastly different results.

With the exclusive introduction providing members with context and insight, members were able to explore the exhibition at leisure, in an out of hours setting. Earlier in the day, we also trialled an afternoon event featuring an exhibition tour, which was greatly enjoyed by all.

Museum of Liverpool private view, July 2011 

On 26 July members were invited to the new Museum of Liverpool out of public opening hours. With thousands of visitors each day, this was a unique opportunity to fully explore the stunning museum away from the daytime crowds!

Jen McCarthy, Deputy Director of Museum of Liverpool, gave a short talk at the start of the event to pick out some highlights of the collections, after which members were free to discover at their leisure the full extent of what was on offer.

Some members made for the cafe to enjoy a complimentary drink, others tried out the immersive film experiences and many took the opportunity to visit the second floor galleries and gaze out at the magnificent views of the Albert Dock and Pier Head.

All in all, it was a wonderful way to mark the end of the first week of the museum's opening.

Like you've never been away; Photographs by Paul Trevor, May 2011

Members were given access to a new exhibition called Like you've never been away, at the Walker Art Gallery.

After a chance to look round the pictures depicting inner-city Liverpool and its residents in the 1970's, members took part in a lively question and answer session with the photographer, Paul Trevor, and heard the fascinating stories behind the pictures, his experiences in Liverpool at the time and how over 30 years later Paul has managed to track down many of the people he photographed.

Members were able to see the exhibition before it opened to the public and it was great to see how much everybody enjoyed the evening. If you're interested you can learn more about becoming a member. 

A Collector's Eye: Cranach to Pissarro, with guest speaker Christopher Wright, February 2011

Christopher Wright, author of the catalogue which accompanies 'A Collector's Eye: Cranach to Pissarro', gave a thoroughly interesting and enjoyable lecture for our most recent members event. In the setting of this beautiful exhibition, members listened whilst Christopher told numerous anecdotes on his experiences with the collector David J Lewis and how he came to have such a unique but stunning private collection. This was a wonderful event which gave our members a real insight into the world of collecting and a chance to enjoy the exhibition out of hours.