Off the Shelf: When brands come to life at the Brand Museum

Here at Trademark Museum in Notting Hill, celebrating arts, heritage and culture is an interactive experience.

Living Brands is a multi-sensory outreach program designed to encourage memories through creative activities and storytelling. As a certified dementia-friendly venue, all visitors have access to over 200 years of consumer culture ranging from toys, fashion, food and anything found in the kitchen or laundry room of your mother. Some of the best reactions were from attendees standing up and dancing to jingles of advertisements. Objects, sounds and smells trigger reactions.

We are structuring our programs to be replicable so that more groups can use them and hopefully more and more museums as well. However, the reactions, stories and shared memories make each event self-contained. It’s a valuable experience for everyone involved and we look forward to developing it further and providing resources to everyone involved in this very diverse community.

Living Brands is a specialized program offering awareness sessions in care homes, drop-in centers, community hubs, memory cafes, and more. Using our carefully curated memory boxes, filled with replica 20th century packaging and products, we can recreate memories while encouraging creative discussions and artistic pursuits using our multi-sensory approach which has proven to be beneficial for the mental and social well-being.

Our new multi-sensory experience will be available to all new and returning visitors to the Museum this fall capturing the sights and sounds of the 20th century. Launching on 8 October 2022 is a new temporary exhibition called Aide-Mémoire: Shopping Lists which showcases the wacky and wild shopping habits of people across the UK Our new exhibition shows the collection of over 200 shopping lists discarded since 2016 by collector Lucy Ireland Gray in Hertfordshire. Since then, friends and family have donated lists from around the world – although collection stalled slightly during the nationwide shutdowns when supermarket cleanliness became excessive and Lucy was reluctant to collect the abandoned lists. What makes shopping lists so special is not so much the content, but the way they are written, what they are written about, and the personal notes sent to the shopper. Reading them is a personal and emotional insight into the person behind the list.

Enjoy walking down memory lane this fall at Trademark Museum.

By: Abby Pendlebury, Community Development Project Manager for Living Brands

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