The Museum of London opened the exhibit Sherlock Holmes: The Man Who Never Lived and Will Never Die today. This exhibit celebrates the world of the
greatest fictional detective of all time. The exhibit will run through
April 12, 2015 with a variety of rare treasures.
•A rare oil on canvas portrait
of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle painted by Sidney Paget in 1897, which has
never been on public display in the UK
•Original pages from Edgar Allan Poe's manuscript of The Murders in the Rue Morgue (1841) never before seen in the UK
•The original manuscript of The Adventure of the Empty House (1903)
iconic Belstaff coat and the Derek Rose camel dressing gown worn by
Benedict Cumberbatch in the Sherlock BBC television series
Visitors enter through the
the history of Sherlock Holmes through the ages, the comprehensive
exhibition navigates its viewers through London-esque pathways
displaying original manuscripts written in Conan Doyle's hand (in a
section entitled 'The Genesis of Sherlock Holmes') right through to his
globally recognized protagonist's portrayals in modern culture (The Many
Sides of Sherlock Holmes). Other treats include first copies of The
Strand magazine in 1891 alongside drawings by the original illustrator,
Alex Werner, Head of History Collections at the
Museum of London and lead curator of Sherlock Holmes said: "Peeling back
the layers of Sherlock Holmes, we will reveal the roots of this global
icon who has continued to enthral audiences for over 125 years. It is
fitting that it be hosted here, in the city which shaped the stories and
created such a rich source for its success."
Those more recently
engaged with the Holmes phenomenon through the BBC's popular 'Sherlock'
adaptation will not only appreciate the vast history behind the 21st
century detective, but also see his famous costume Belstaff coat and the
Derek Rose camel dressing gown, worn by Benedict Cumberbatch himself,
on loan from Hartswood Films.
A particularly fascinating section
of the exhibition focuses on The London of Sherlock Holmes bringing
together paintings, drawings, illustrations and photographs to examine
how Victorian London and the cultural climate of the day informed Conan
Doyle's stories and characters, interpreting renowned artists and
photographers through the prism of Sherlock Holmes and identifying key
locations. The stories and images reinforce each other to create the
seminal views of Holmes's London embedded in our cultural memory; a
particularly enjoyable journey having stepped in from the very same city
from which Conan Doyle took his inspiration.
As you walk through
the door of 221B Baker Street, recreated to mark the final section of
the exhibition, Holmes, the man, is analyzed through a series of studies
on his analytical mind, his forensic and scientific approach to solving
crimes, his ability to go undercover as a master of disguise, and his
characterisation as a Bohemian drug taker yet model English gentleman.
This is enhanced by a vast collection of objects from the period when
Conan Doyle was writing, including costume, to provide a further
understanding of the detective's notorious traits. The exhibition will
explain where the ideas originally came from, and their real-world
precedence, including the instantly recognisable symbols of the
magnifying glass, pipe and deerstalker.
Many of these iconic
objects have been replicated for purchase in the MoL shop, most notably
the 'Museum of London Tweed' specially commissioned in collaboration
with Christys' Hats and Lovat Mill. Inspired by the color palette
described in the original Sherlock Holmes stories, along with late
Victorian tweed and current menswear trending forecasting data, the
'sophisticated, contemporary design' as described by Sean O'Sullivan,
Interim Director of Enterprise at MoL, is currently on sale in the form
of the deerstalker and flat cap but will soon be appearing at Liberty
and Christys' Hats.