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Canadian Museum of History

Canada’s history through the eyes of children

‘A Little History’ — a temporary exhibit focused on the experiences of children throughout Canadian history

Exhibit gallery with navy blue textured walls featuring a single artwork with an array of several vintage lampshades overhead, next to a curtain featuring vintage illustrations of a lantern and camera, and a display case containing several small artifacts on the right.
Canadian Museum of History
Project type
Temporary exhibition

Immersed in rarely seen archival documents, photographs, artworks, and artifacts from the Library and Archives Canada (LAC) and the Canadian Museum of History, our exhibition team embarked on a captivating assignment. Entrusted with the task of unveiling the untold stories of children who bore witness to pivotal historical events, we envisioned a dreamlike setting that would transcend time.

We began with the development of a graphic approach that delicately balanced historical content with the innocence of children's perspectives. Straying away from a purely child-centric design, we seamlessly blended historical and modern motifs, fusing authentic and nostalgic styles. Our large-format illustrations hinted that both childhood and adult memories often spring from singular objects or experiences—a visual suggestion that memories often manifest as hazy dreams rather than sharp recollections.

The culmination of our efforts resulted in an exhibition with an almost ethereal aesthetic, a blend of modernity and whimsy. It was the first of five shows highlighting LAC's incredible collections, and it resonated deeply with both visitors and staff. This exhibition exemplifies our dedication to creating immersive experiences that seamlessly blend history, art, and storytelling.

“Children are typically absent from the historical narrative, and I think it’s important to look at what their experiences can shed light on. Because, really, they have their own stories.”
Carolyn Cook
Canadian Museum of History

Be beautifully accessible.

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