Break out the cheese, Wallace & Gromit fans, then put on the right trousers and prepare for what's bound to be a very grand day out indeed. As part of the Victorian Government's Melbourne Winter Masterpieces series, the Australian Centre for the Moving Image has announced a massive exhibition dedicated to everyone's favourite stop-motion-animated, dairy-loving inventor and his kindly claymation canine pal, as well as the broader Aardman world they hail from.
Taking over ACMI from June 29 to October 29, 2017, Wallace & Gromit and friends: The magic of Aardmanwill showcase more than 350 items, spanning original artworks, sketches, storyboards, hand-made sets and set pieces, character studies, puppets and more. Specific items such as the flying machine from Chicken Run and the five-metre tall ship from The Pirates! Band of Misfits will also feature. In short, if it's related to the Oscar, BAFTA and all-round award-winning animation studio's beloved were-rabbit chasers, escaping chooks and swashbucklers — and their other flicks such as Flushed Away, Arthur Christmas and Shaun the Sheep — you'll find it here.
Of course, ACMI being ACMI, you can expect to see bits and pieces of Aardman's shorts, television work, advertisements, music videos and movies too, though an accompanying big screen lineup hasn't yet been announced. And the timing really couldn't be better. While their highly anticipated next effort Early Man won't release in cinemas until 2018, the exhibition will include concept drawings from the Stone Age versus Bronze Age caper, which will feature the voices of Eddie Redmayne and Tom Hiddleston.
Curated byArt Ludique-Le Musée, Paris, where the exhibition premiered in 2015, Wallace & Gromit and friends also marks more than four decades of Aardman goodness — and its Melbourne run will coincide with the 40th anniversary of the first Aardman short, 1977's Animated Conversations: Down and Out, in fact.With Brisbane's Gallery of Modern Art opening its doors to a Marvel showcase in 2017, next year sure is shaping up to be a mighty fine time for pop culture-filled galleries — and for travelling around the country to peek behind the scenes of your favourite screen content, perhaps?
Wallace & Gromit and friends: The magic of Aardman exhibits at ACMI from June 29 to October 29, 2017. Tickets go on sale from Monday, November 21, 2016. Visit the ACMI website for further details.