National Museums Liverpool (NML) has announced the winners of a competition that encouraged children to create exhibitions inspired by their own lives.
Launched during the first national lockdown in 2020, My Home is My Museum was aimed at 4-11 year olds.
The young people, who were learning from home at the time, submitted promotional films for their exhibitions, alongside the name of their display and a poster design.
From the dozens of entries, Mariah Ali emerged as the winner with her video of artworks that she wanted in her exhibition, including her painting of the Bangladeshi flag.
She also featured her favourite quote, from Pakistani activist and Nobel Peace Prize laureate (who has recently spoken out about the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan), Malala Yousafzai: “One child, one teacher, one book and one pen can change the world.” Ali wrote this out on a hand-painted background.
Ali also included a drawing of her best friend, paintings of her favourite book covers and three of her own paintings of landscapes and idyllic skies.
Second place was given to Franco Lewis and third to Samuel Clark.
An NML expert will give the three winners tours of their favourite collections and they will have the chance to find out more about putting together exhibitions and displays.
The judging panel for My Home is My Museum were artist and host of kids art TV programme Art Attack!, Neil Buchanan; local activist and strategy lead at the Anthony Walker Foundation, Ben Osu; and NML director Laura Pye.
“It is always a real joy to be involved with anything to do with my home city of Liverpool and I am constantly amazed by the levels of creativity, personality and passion that pours out of our young people,” Buchanan said.
“The standard of entries was so high throughout that it became increasingly difficult to pick out the best of the best, but one thing’s for sure – I certainly spotted some of our potential future star artists, museum curators, and even TV personalities in among videos and photos.”
Pye said: “This was an incredible project to be involved with. The other guest judges and I were completely bowled over by how many entries we received and the quality of them. The last 18 months has been a difficult time, but if anything, this project has shown us how resilient children are. I feel really excited about the future of museums given the thoughtful creativity and attention shown in these short films.”