162 colourful characters have taken up residence in Bristol Museum & Art Gallery for a brand new exhibition exploring the history of clowning.
To celebrate 250 years of circus, the museum has created Clowns: The Eggs-hibition – a free family show featuring original costume, fascinating archives and 162 intriguing clown eggs.
Clowns International – the oldest clowning organisation in the world – has been painting the faces of its members on eggs for over 70 years. Each one is a record of a clown’s identity, preserving the unwritten rule that no clown should copy another’s look.
The exhibition explores the origins of clowning and unveils the personal, hilarious and often bizarre stories of the people beneath the colourful exterior. Alongside the clown eggs, the exhibition features a clown car, circus props and clothing, archive photos, a kids trail, dressing-up, and even an invisible dog.
A programme of events will take place alongside the exhibition including Museums at Night: Circus Spectacular on Thursday 25 October – an evening of amazing acrobatics and live performances from Circomedia, Shakedown, Invisible Circus and Cirque da Purr.
There will be opportunities to try out circus skills like juggling and tightrope walking, dress up in a themed photo booth and discover more about Bristol’s circus history from St. James’ Fair to becoming a ‘circus city’.
On various dates during October and November, there will also be a Clown-in-Residence at the museum, plus free performances, pop up play sessions, nonsensical tours and a laughter yoga workshop.
The exhibition will take place until 6th January 2019. The exhibition runs on a pay-what-you-think basis and no booking required.
Please head over to the Bristol Mum facebook page for more ideas of fun things to do in Bristol with kids!