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School of Arts, Languages and Cultures

Great coral reef

'Coral: Something Rich and Strange'(#MMCoral), a new exhibition at Manchester Museum

Dr Marion Endt-JonesBritish Academy Postdoctoral Fellow in Art History and Visual Studies Art History, is curating an exhibition on coral in nature and culture at the Manchester Museum. The show, which is one of the outcomes of Marion’s three-year research project 'A Cultural History of Coral, c. 1850-2010', is entitled Coral: Something Rich and Strange (#MMCoral), and will run from 29 November 2013 until 16 March 2014 at the Museum's temporary exhibitions gallery.

The exhibition, which is funded by the Arts Council England and the Granada Foundation, juxtaposes Manchester Museum's natural coral specimens, fossils and glass models of sea anemones with ethnographic objects, cultural artefacts, decorative art objects and artworks from different cultures around the globe. The cross-disciplinary display relies on objects from most of the Museum’s own departments – Zoology, Archaeology, Egyptology, Numismatics and Anthropology – but also draws on major loans from the Whitworth Art Gallery andManchester Art Gallery. For example, Marion 'unearthed' a large collection of Victorian coral jewellery at the Gallery of Costumeat Platt Hall, parts of which will be on display alongside Dante Gabriel Rossetti’s Pre-Raphaelite painting Joli Cœur, among other works. Other national and international institutions lending to the exhibition include 

The exhibition will also include commissions of new works from the internationally renowned artist Mark Dion and the Lancashire-based textile artist Karen Casper, as well as a large-scale community engagement project, Manchester’s very own Crochet Coral Reef. A beautifully illustrated Coral: Something Rich and Strange book accompanies the exhibition, containing an essay on coral in art and nature, an interview with the artist Gemma Anderson and several concrete object stories by experts from different disciplines, ranging from art history and archaeology to history of science and biology, published by Liverpool University Press.

The exhibition will be on view at the Manchester Museum from 29 November 2013 until 16th March 2014.

Further information

For more details, please contact:

Dr Marion Endt-Jones
The University of Manchester
School of Arts, Languages and Cultures
Oxford Road
Manchester M13 9PL
Tel.: 0161 306 1780
Email: marion.endt[at]manchester.ac.uk

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