PRESS UPDATE – BICENTENARY YEAR OF JULIA MARGARET CAMERON

The press department wanted to inform you of the work they have been doing to entice travellers to the Isle of Wight through a concerted PR campaign to promote the bicentenaray year of Julia Margaret Cameron. Please view a copy of the press release below that was recently sent out.


Born on June 11th, 2015 is the 200th birthday of pioneer photographer Julia Margaret Cameron, whose former home and workplace on the Isle of Wight, Dimbola Museum & Galleries, is now a mecca for anyone wanting to know more about her pioneering work and portraits of celebrities of that time.

It was at the beginning of this year that VIOW spotted the potential for generating interest in the story, using it as one of their “Top 10 reasons for visiting the Isle of Wight in 2015” when engaging with national and international travel writers.

Dubbed “the best kept secret on the Isle of Wight” by VIOW in their press material, the DMO’s press team have been having regular meetings with travel journalists and is now partnering with the V&A Museum in London – with the offer of helping to host media visits for any journalists who might benefit from visiting the Island and some of the locations where Julia Margaret Cameron and The Freshwater Circle (including Tennyson, Lewis Carroll and Darwin) lived and worked.

VIOW is also arranging a competition to “Walk in the footsteps of Julia Margaret Cameron”, which will feature on the V&A website, with a link to www.visitisleofwight.co.uk.

While the V&A Museum’s press activity is expected to kick into action in June – to coincide with Cameron’s birthday on June 11th –-VIOW has already been explaining to travel writers how they, too, can follow in the footsteps of Cameron by visiting Dimbola Museum & Galleries and other areas of the Island.

Dimbola has planned a full year of special exhibitions and events to give visitors a full insight into her life and work.  There will also be bi-monthly exhibitions of the work of local schools and community groups who will be exploring and being inspired by Julia’s work.

The anniversary will also be marked elsewhere in the UK, with two major exhibitions of her work in London: at the V&A Museum, and The Science Museum.

The V&A Museum exhibition is already on tour world-wide and is currently at Ghent Museum of Fine Arts until June 14th.  It will then head to the Sydney Art Gallery of New South Wales from August 14th to October 25th.  After returning to the V&A Museum in London from November 2015, to February 2016, it will then go on show at the Madrid Fundacion Mapfre from March 8th to May 8th, and the Tokyo Mitsubishi Ichigokan Museum from June 29th to September 25th 2016.

The nearby Science Museum in London is also set to stage its own exhibition of 94 photographs from their collections.  This will take place between September 24 and March 28 and is a free exhibition.  The V&A Museum and the Science Museum are now liaising closely together to make sure the two exhibitions work together in tandem, to help raise the profile of both Cameron, and the two free exhibitions of her work in London.

Sue Emmerson, Press Officer for VIOW, said: “There’s a great opportunity to make sure that both the V&A Museum, and Science Museum refer to Julia Margaret Cameron’s life and work on the Isle of Wight in all of their press & PR and promotional activity.

“We have already had a lot of interest, including a recent visit by a journalist from The Independent.  The results will be published in a travel feature in the Independent’s Traveller magazine on June 6th.

“The latest news about the possibility of JMC appearing on the back of a £20 note is a nice addition to our own PR efforts and would be really big for the Island if it takes off.” To nominate Julia Margaret Cameron please visit the Bank of England’s website by clicking here. Nominations are to be made by the 19th July 2015.