The exhibition took visitors on a journey through the evolution of an industry which currently brings over £20.1bn to the UK economy. It examined the ways in which advertising has both reflected and influenced social, political and economic changes over the past 100 years. Visitors could watch some of their favourite ads, play with the most iconic characters and step inside adland itself, learning everything about how ads are really made.
The exhibition was organised around four core themes and is complemented with two immersive areas which look to the future.
Imagine A World Without Advertising
Step into a plain, colourless supermarket aisle where the shelves are filled with unbranded products. What would the world be like without advertising? How would we know what we want? What to buy? Where to shop? How would we choose and where would we go for help and advice? There’s only way to find out… visitors will be encouraged to explore 100 Years Of British Advertising.
The Ads That Shaped Our Lives
From the jingles you couldn’t get out of your head, to the characters you’ll never forget ‘The Ads That Shaped Our Lives’ will explore the adverts that became part of the family, jumping out of the television set into our lives. Kicking off in the 60s and 70s with the Smash Martians and the Honey Monster and working our way through the decades to *that* iconic Flat Eric Levi’s ad. Visitors will be encouraged to explore how advertising has impacted on and shaped public life; from improving road safety with the Green Cross Code, to encouraging us to support good causes or to cast our vote and to check out some of the weirdest and most wonderful ads of all time.
Highs, Lows and Keeping It Legal
It hasn’t always been easy. Stepping into the third section of the exhibition visitors will be invited to find out more about how the advertising industry has been castigated, regulated and controlled over the years. Looking at the most controversial ads of all time, from Lynx’s ‘It Takes 40 Dumb Animals’, to Barnardo’s 2008 appeal ‘Break The Cycle’, as well as examining the changing way in which people have been represented including women, ethnic minorities, people with disabilities, older people and men. The 100 years since 1917 have seen dramatic changes in society and this area will pose some questions about the impact of these changes on how we see ourselves and others.
Getting behind the scenes of Britain’s advertising industry this last zone of the exhibition will give visitors access to the process of making adverts. We meet ‘the insiders,’ the movers and shakers who created the ad land we know today. Visitors will be able to take a quiz to find out ‘How Don Draper Are You?’ and then to find themselves in a real life ad agency learning about all the different skills and people that go into making your favourite adverts and bringing us up to date with a chance to try out some of the latest and most exciting virtual reality technology.
Inside Channel 4
Jump inside the world of TV and immerse yourself into one of the nations favourite programmes with this interactive exhibit from innovative UK broadcaster, Channel 4.
CLICK, presented by Google
The advent of ‘digital’ occupies just a fraction of the last 100 years of advertising, yet its effect over such a short period has been profound. Google’s ‘Click’ exhibit celebrates brands who have pushed the limits of creativity thanks to new technology and key advancements across platforms and screens.