From the V&A exhibition Leonardo Da Vinci: Experience, Experiment and Design. Royal Collection © 2006 Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II
Leonardo da Vinci is the historical character most people would bring back to life - more people want Kate Moss to be preserved in a museum than Tony Blair - and the iPod is seen as a key icon of our time. All this and more is revealed in the new 2007 Museums and Galleries Month survey.
And never mind bendy buses, gas guzzling 4X4’s or even the Smart Car – lots of people in the MGM survey want the Routemaster bus out of the museum and back on the roads!
"Museums and galleries play a vital role in both preserving and shaping the nation's identity and in keeping the past alive,” said Loyd Grossman, Chairman of the Campaign for Museums.
“The results of the survey offer an insight into how we perceive ourselves and how we would like to be remembered in the future. Although whether Kate Moss will bear comparison with Leonardo da Vinci by future generations remains to be seen!'
Kate Moss photographed by Nick Knight for British Vogue, February 1996 issue
In the new survey people were asked who or what would best represent life in 2007 in the museum of the future? Who would we most like to bring back to life?
The survey was carried out by The Campaign for Museums and the 24 Hour Museum, and it’s nicely in keeping with the theme of the hit film Night at the Museum, in which the objects and historical characters come to life.
In the survey, artists, writers and great world leaders dominated the list of historical figures encountered in UK museums we would most like to bring back to life:
1. Leonardo da Vinci – Science Museum, London - 16%
2. Elizabeth I - National Portrait Gallery, London - 13%
3. Shakespeare - National Portrait Gallery, London - 11%
4. Gandhi - National Portrait Gallery, London - 10%
5. Jane Austen - Jane Austen Centre, Bath - 8%
Two Routemaster buses on route 11 at St Paul's Cathedral © Transport For London.
The survey also asked participants which object found in a museum they would bring back into everyday use? The Routemaster bus, (which does, in fact, still run on two routes in London), topped the list:
1. Routemaster bus - 27%
2. Steam train - 13%
3. Rocking horse - 12%
4. Telegram - 11%
5. Corset - 10%
When asked which person should be preserved and put in a museum? the influence of popular culture was clear, with politicians appearing further down the list than actors, models and stars of reality television. The top five choices were:
1. Kate Moss - 13%
2. Nelson Mandela - 11%
3= Shilpa Shetty - 10%
3= J K Rowling - 10%
4. David Tennant - 9%
5. Kyle Minogue - 8%
The must-have device of the new millennium - the iPod. According to the survey, it's a must-have for museums.
For museum-goers of the future, people were asked which objects should be preserved to show people what life is like in 2007? The list revealed not only our interests, but also our concerns, with internet culture, technology and climate change being the main themes:
1. iPod - 36%
2. Oyster card - 13%
3. Low energy light bulb - 11%
4. Blog - 10%
5. Nintendo Wii - 7%