First World War Centenary Partnership announces 2014 exhibitions and events

By Culture24 Reporter | 04 November 2013

A series of lithograph prints at National Museum Cardiff, a surprising examination of the relationship between war and medicine in Leeds and a far-reaching photo show at Tate Modern have been announced in the First World War Centenary Partnership’s keenly-anticipated line-up for 2014.

A black and white photo of soldiers walking across a battlefield during the First World War
The Third Battle of Ypres (September 5 1917). The First World War will be remembered across hundreds of exhibitions, events and resources announced by the First World War Centenary Partnership© IWM
Much of the focus is likely to be on the new First World War Galleries at the Imperial War Museum, which are expected to contain the most comprehensive display on the conflict ever seen when they open in July 2014.

But 500 exhibitions and galleries will open across the world, 200 of which – as well as 50 new artistic commissions – will appear in 14 different countries.

100 Years Later: Conflict, Time, Photography, at Tate Modern next November, will highlight the “fundamental aspect” of time in photography, surveying the techiques camera holders have brought to portrayals of war.

Under a working title of Unknown Heroes, Leeds’ Thackray Medical Museum will reveal the medical advances resulting from the war, while National Museum Cardiff will take a series of prints, ordered by the Ministry of Information to raise the morale of a war-weary public, as a starting point for an exploration of varying attitudes at the time, including the changing role of women after the war.

The Imperial War Museum will also host Truth and Memory: British Art of the First World War, the largest retrospective of British art from the First World War in almost a century. And the impact the conflict had on the north will be at the centre of From Street to Trench: A War That Shaped a Region, at IWM North.

Other exhibitions include Hope in the Great War, an RNLI touring show beginning at the group’s Henry Blogg Museum in Norfolk, and Choices Then and Now, a story-based multimedia display at the Peace Museum in Bradford.

“We are all connected to the First World War,” says Diane Lees, the Director-General of IWM.

“This huge and growing programme shows that millions of people want to remember and learn more about its impact.

“The First World War centenary really matters to a huge amount of people – it may be because of a personal and family connection, the effect the First World War had on their hometown, how it changed our wider society or because of their beliefs about war and the importance of peace.”

Lees says the plans of the Partnership, which launched in 2010, are expanding “on a daily basis”, aiming to involve members of the public “in a way that is meaningful to them.”

Nearly 2,000 cultural and educational groups, based in 37 countries, will be holding events and activities, which are being collated and shared by Culture24, or creating resources between 2014 and 2018.

Games, podcasts, films and videos are among 700 digital resources on the way, accompanied by nearly 100 mobile apps.

If you are a venue or organisation in the First World War partnership, find out how to get your events listed here.

Find out more about the First World War partnership at

More highlights from the programme:

Keep the Home Fires Burning
National Portrait Gallery, London
Stars of Music Halls of the Great War period and First World War-inspired performances by the Portrait Choir.

Lives of the First World War
A permanent digital memorial to more than eight million men and women from across Britain and the Commonwealth who served in uniform and worked on the home front. Run by the IWM and positioned as an official online place for global audiences to share their thoughts

Lest we Forget
Barbican, London (April 2-12)
Award-winning British choreographers Akram Khan, Russell Maliphant and Liam Scarlett create new works for English National Ballet’s programme of British dance inspired by the centenary of the First World War

The Sir Edward German Music Festival
Whitchurch, Shropshire (April 28 – May 2)
A community-led classical music extravaganza including performances of works by Sir Edward German and his contemporaries, including composers who failed to return from the war

Never Such Innocence
Australia House, London (May 14-15)
A specially-commissioned production of poetry, prose and music of the First World War, organised in conjunction with the Australian High Commission

The First World War in Retrospect
Weetwood Hall, Leeds (July 28 – August 1)
A conference with partners including York Army Museum, the Royal Armouries and Leeds University Library

Birmingham Bach Choir
Symphony Hall, Birmingham (September 13)
Premiere of a new, specially-commissioned choral symphony reflecting on suffering, sacrifice and bravery, dedicated to heroes in all generations

What do you think? Leave a comment below.

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