Attractions industry news

19 Jul 2018

British Museum seeks to acquire 'Trump Baby' for dissent exhibition

London's British Museum is planning to borrow the Trump Baby blimp, which flew over the British capital's streets last week in protest against US President Donald Trump's visit.

Standing 6m (20ft) tall and created by artist Matt Bonner, the inflatable caricature of Trump was flown in London's Parliament Square on 13 July, protesting his visit and policies. The £16,000 (US$21,000, €18,000) effigy of the president was crowdfunded by members of the public and depicts the president as an "angry orange baby" with a snarling mouth and tiny hands. The giant balloon is also wearing a nappy and holding a mobile phone.

The British Museum is seeking to borrow the balloon, which would go on display as part of its upcoming exhibition, I object, Ian Hislop's search for dissent, which sets out to investigate "what the other people had to say – the downtrodden, the forgotten, the protestors".

Private Eye editor and Have I Got News For You panellist Ian Hislop is curating the exhibition, which will feature a hand-picked range of intriguing objects that explore the idea of dissent, subversion and satire.

According to the Museums Association, the museum is in early talks to temporarily acquire the blimp, which has been confirmed by Kevin Smith – one of the people behind the blimp's creation – who also added the blimp could go on display at other institutions worldwide.

“Trump Baby will be going on some sort of international tour,” he said. “We're in touch with various other groups and institutions who would like to host him, and our priority is for countries where Trump will be visiting, but we need to sit down and go through all these offers and see what's possible.”

The baby is heading to the US after a second fundraising campaign raised more than £18,000 (US$23,000, €20,000) to bring Trump Baby to New Jersey and beyond.

I object, Ian Hislop's search for dissent debuts on 6 September and runs through to 20 January 2019.

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