Designers within Leach Studio, part of Huddersfield-based Leach, have come up with conceptual designs for the Eternal Egypt gallery at Bolton Museum. The images show four different stages of the potential visitor experience and interested parties are being asked on what they think works and how they would like the exhibition space to look. More detailed concepts will then be drawn up and final designs submitted in the spring, with the museum re-opening to the public in 2018.
Bolton Council’s cabinet member for culture, youth and sport, Cllr John Byrne, said: “As initial concepts for the new Eternal Egypt gallery, these designs are really exciting and give a flavour of what our museum could look like.
“These designs are subject to change as we are just at the start of this creative journey, but I can’t wait to see the finished gallery and welcome visitors to our fantastic museum. We’d love to hear what people think and would encourage them to get involved on social media.”
Nichola Ward, head of creative, Leach Studio, added: “We’re delighted to be involved in such an exciting project, and look forward to working with the Bolton community as our creative designs begin to evolve. Museum and heritage is at the heart of our business and we can’t wait to bring Egyptology to life!”
On entering the exhibition, visitors look set to be welcomed by an area called the Rotunda which will set the scene and give an explanation of why Bolton Museum has such an extensive Egyptology collection.
A section named Land and People has also been proposed which will be devoted to artefacts showing the everyday life of Egyptians. The focus will be on subjects like the environment and beauty, and feature an interactive mummy as centrepiece.
The Eternal Egypt experience could then take visitors through to the darkened Beliefs section – focussing on death and the afterlife – before leading to the museum’s facsimile tomb of Thutmose III. The tomb is a full size reproduction of the Pharaoh’s burial chamber which will be the jewel in the crown of the exhibition.
Finally, the Reflections area could live up to its name and offer visitors the chance to reflect on why Boltonians are similar to Ancient Egyptians, looking at the similarities between the two groups hundreds of years apart.
The images will be shared on the museum’s Facebook page, and amongst community groups and school groups, to establish the public’s views on the designs.