Alison Prince, Web Manager
The last day of the Shelley’s Ghost exhibition at the Bodleian was 27 March 2011. Sadly, it has now been taken down but only to make way for the next exciting installment, Manifold Greatness: Oxford and the Making of the King James Bible, which opens on 22 April. It will live on, however, through the
Shelley’s Ghost exhibition website, which will be staying live and continuing to make the objects available in a virtual sense to interested audiences around the world. A version of the exhibition will also be showing at The New York Public Library in 2012.
Throughout the whole process of planning and showing the exhibition, the Communications team worked tirelessly behind the scenes to get the message out about Shelley’s Ghost and the fascinating stories and objects it was showcasing. I think we should also thank Danny Boyle for showing his Frankenstein at the opportune moment when his audiences were able to come and see the real thing here!
By way of farewell, I thought it would be nice to share some of our amazing media coverage from the exhibition. Here are few examples of the great things that were written:
LA Times – 25 March 2011
Paul Edmonson’s blog post – 21 March 2011
The One Show – 18 February 2011
Times Higher Education – 17 February 2011
BBC Arts blog – 15 February 2011
BBC News – 15 February 2011
Culture 24 -3 December 2010
Mail Online – 30 November 2010
Alison Prince, Web Manager
Since Shelley’s Ghost launched in early December 2010, we’ve continued to work in the background at adding the few extras that felt would be really valuable to the website.
I’m very pleased to say that we have now launched our comment facility, so visitors to the website can record their thoughts and comments on each of the exhibits (or their experience of the website more generally) on a dedicated comments tab. We are very much hoping that people will be keen to exploit this. Here is an example of one that has been left already.
We have also added an exhibition timeline. Presented as a slideshow, this interactive gives an overview of the chronology of the exhibition and helps to provide valuable context for visitors. The various exhibition themes are linked to the relevant part of the timeline for quick reference. You can see the timeline here.
Enjoy. More later.
Oana Romocea, Communications Officer
We decided early on in the Shelley’s Ghost website project that we could help to bring to life the stories and voices contained within the exhibition’s manuscripts and letters if we recorded them being read and performed in a series of podcasts.
We started by working with the exhibiton curator, Stephen Hebron, to create a shortlist of exhibits that we felt would most benefit from being heard as well as seen. These included well-known poems by Shelley, extracts of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, and personal family letters, including Harriet Shelley’s suicide note. We were also keen to try and use budding actors and actresses from the University of Oxford student body so we contacted the University’s Drama Officer who helped us to recruit seven willing volunteers.
We managed to do most of the recording in a day. The day itself was intense and punctuated with frequent and inevitable interruptions from noisy pipes, slamming doors and passing tourists chatting happily. We even had to banish a clock to the hallway for ticking too loudly.
The day was also extremely enjoyable. The enthusiasm of the student actors was quite inspiring and it was fascinating to see the variety of approaches and interpretations they brought to the pieces.
When we finished the recording, we asked the students how they had felt about the whole process. Perhaps my favourite summary of the day came from Annabel James (St. Hilda’s College) who said: “It was great to take part in the Bodleian’s Shelley exhibition because I learned so much about how an exhibition like this is put together, and I was able to work with letters and other documents that they don’t show you in an A-level Frankenstein class!”