'Mischievous' literature exhibit heads to Ipswich

Julian is a Mermaid 

Julian is a Mermaid - Credit: The Hold

Literature's most rebellious characters are the centre of a new exhibition heading to Ipswich this summer.

Fans will be able to view the British Library's ‘Marvellous and Mischievous: Literature’s Young Rebels’ exhibit at The Hold, at the University of Suffolk campus, when it arrives next week.

The display features more than 50 books, manuscripts and original artwork, including characters such as Tracy Beaker, Pippi Longstocking, Jane Eyre, Dirty Bertie and Matilda. 

Billy and the Beast

Billy and the Beast - Credit: Nadia Shireen

Visitors will also be able to discover original artworks by much-loved illustrators, including Sir Quentin Blake (Matilda), Nick Sharratt (Tracy Beaker), and Judith Kerr (When Hitler Stole Pink Rabbit). 

The exhibition highlights the different attitudes of rebellious characters in children’s literature. 

What planet are you from?

What planet are you from? - Credit: Lauren Child

Some of the characters stand up for what they believe in, others break away from convention, have a cause they are striving for, are extremely resilient, survive difficult situations or are just slightly mischievous. 

Emily Shepperson, the exhibition and interpretation officer at Suffolk Archives, said: “The Marvellous and Mischievous exhibition programme offers light-hearted, creative activities for families and adults.

Pride in Suffolk exhibition curated by Emily Shepperson is showing at The Hold in Ipswich Picture:

Pride in Suffolk exhibition curated by Emily Shepperson is showing at The Hold in Ipswich - Credit: CHARLOTTE BOND

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“We hope that grown-ups and children alike can enjoy the display of characters and stories, which hold a special place in their hearts.  

“Whatever your age, there will be lots of Marvellous and Mischievous activities to enjoy this summer at The Hold.” 

Councillor Bobby Bennett, cabinet member for equality and communities at Suffolk County Council, said: “We are excited to be bringing the British Museum’s Marvellous and Mischievous touring exhibition to Suffolk.  

Former licencing enforcement officer for Ipswich Borough Council, Bob Bennett, was known in the town for always wearing...

Former licencing enforcement officer for Ipswich Borough Council, Bob Bennett, was known in the town for always wearing his red fleece. - Credit: Bennett family

“By combining the exhibition with a fun events programme, we are giving people of all ages and backgrounds even more reason to visit The Hold and experience our culture, archives and heritage centre for themselves.”  

There will also be many events connected to the exhibition, including adult storytelling classes carried out by professional storytellers, Mamma G, Dave Tong and Baden Prince Jnr, and storytelling classes for children, led by the theatre group Get Lost and Found, which will discover the world of the Moomins. 

Zog and Princess Pearl

Zog and Princess Pearl - Credit: Julia Donaldson

The exhibition funded by The National Lottery Heritage Fund takes off on July 15 and will run throughout the summer.