Click arrows to scroll
The Equiano Project was a £900,000 HLF funded project, a partnership project between
The Challenge: to bring the story of Olaudah Equiano alive. To take a book, the auto-biography written by Olaudah Equiano ‘The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano, or Gustavus Vassa, the African’, and make an exciting accessible exhibition. The book was first published in 1789 Equiano rapidly became an influential best-seller – his story is one of the great untold stories, this exhibition addressed that omission. Equiano is now studied as part of the National Curriculum.
The exhibition had to make accessible a story written over 200 years ago which crossed vast geographic distance. Despite his enslavement as a child Olaudah Equiano purchased his freedom and then worked as an author, merchant and explorer. His travels took him to South America, the Caribbean, the Arctic, the American colonies as well as the
The lack of personal material artefacts for display was overcome by borrowing contextual materials from National and International collections including the
The Equiano Project included four community projects. Work created on these projects was displayed within the exhibition alongside the 200 museum artefacts.
In addition to the exhibition in the Gas Hall the Equiano project created a web site, an education pack which was distributed to schools in the areas and two travelling exhibitions which continue to tour, one is currently on display in
Over 28,000 visitors saw the exhibition in the 3 months it was open.
HKD continues to work closely with the Equiano Society and actively looks for opportunities to bring Equiano’s Interesting Narrative to a wider audience.