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Creating and hosting an exhibition, though no easy or superficial task, is a fun activitiy that can stir very deep emotions in all of the parties related to it: artists/contributors, organisors and visitors alike. A well thought out and designed exhibition can succeed in touching all of us in one way or another!

There are many different types of exhibitions and one of the easiests is a ‘pop-up exhibition’. They are simpler and practical in character.

A pop-up exhibition is a new and effective way of utilising unused/unoccupied shops, buildings, parks, halls and other spaces for a limited time period, starting from an hour to a few weeks. It has many advantages apart from being a practical way of holding exhibitions on a small budget. A Pop up, can bring new life to long-neglected areas of a neighbourhood. It is also very effective in connecting people living in the same area and thanks to the pop-up, giving them a lot of ideas to discuss about

Aims of the course: In this module, you will find all the necessary information needed to help you organise a pop up of your own along with a sample task that will function as a starting point for you. We have had a very enjoyable time while working on it and sincerely hope that you will share the same feelings with us when you, yourself, are also involved in developing your own.



The artists/contributors of the exhibitions should either be descendants of the people who experienced migration or population exchange or interview somebody who experienced it themselves in order to learn about their experinces. See Quest on “How to Interview people” for the Grandma’s Story Project.


After learning about their story, you need to find a way to share it with the visitors of the exhibition. Below,
you will find some ideas in relation to this: Choose an object to present in the exhibit. This may be a realia, an artifact or a photo/picture/video
recording/voice recording. You may tell the visitors the objects’ story yourself through texts placed on your stand or you can invite the person who owns it to do so. If that person is not available to come to the exhibition, you can have their video or voice recording to share with the visitors. Keep in mind that you need to hold a written consent of this person with their signature on in every case listed here. If they are illiterate,
then you can have it verbally through a video recording. You may choose to compose a song, play one or share a poem written by you based on the object or the story you have chosen and perform it in your stand in the area.
You may present an object that you have created upon hearing the incident. Keep in mind that there may be lots of other ways of holding such an exhibition and you can come up with a mixture of activities/concepts by following an eclectic method. Feel free to be as creative and practical as
possible. A hands-on spot where the visitors in the exhibition area could handle objects can be a fun idea and a
memorable one. Perhaps; you can let them express and share their feelings and ideas on the stories they have come across there. They can sing a song, read a poem, write a short note, draw a picture, leave a photo they have taken during their visit or perhaps make a model by using cartoons or bits and peaces that you can provide them with on a table in a seperate area in the main hall. Remember that you may need boards toshare these with the others on the spot, too.



Creating the Theme

This is a must in order to develop an effective exhibition because it provides integrity.

Preparation of the Objects to Be Exhibited

These may be pictures, photographs, video and/or voice recordings, commemorative objects or even a narration either in person or in voice and/or video recording. It is a good idea to prepare an application form to be filled in by the participants/artisits so that you choose among them easily. (See Application Document) Along with this form, you will need to publish a call introducing the idea you have in mind apart from drawing up a contract and a specification.

Name tags/ identification cards for each one of the items is needed in two ways: This will help the visitors to understand exactly what they are looking at as it will be feeding them with the necessary information and secondly, it will ensure much more memorable effects. The information given by the contributors/artists will help you with the content.

Distribution of Responsibilities

In any sort of organisation, group members working within need to know what to do and how to do and decide on who will take care of what so that everything goes smoothly. (See Planning Document)

Deciding on the Name of the Exhibition and the Concept

The title of an exhibition should be chosen as to the theme to reflect the idea behind it and ring a bell in the minds of the public. Plus, the composition of the objects to be exhibited is also of utmost importance as every exhibition has an artistic attribute too. Plus, it is also important to arrange the display area in a way that reflects the feeling that you aim to create for the visitors. Background music and treats to be served could be considered here as well. These are important to leave a warm feeling on the visitiors.


In order to hold an organisation where resources are used effectively, one needs to know their budget and
how to use it successfully. So, you should start with the definition of budget items. (see Budget Planning

Deciding on the Exhibition Area

One can hold an exhibition in any place that you can think of depending on the concept and the items (size, value etc). You should keep in mind that you may need a board or a stand or a table at least to arrange your items on. You may also need wall space and access to electricity. Remember that you will need to decide on the exact number of the contributors and/or exhibits in relation to the space you have.

How to Gain Publicity

Letting the public know about your upcoming exhibition is a must. Networking is, of course, the key, here. Plus, you can come up with some creative means of inviting people to the exhibition too. Try to find simple, cheap but effective ways of arousing public interest. If possible, reaching the local media to help you with this would work quite well, too. Keep in mind that much of the work could be done by word-of-mouth recommendations once it is open. Don’t forget about social media such as Facebook. Set up a Facebook page for your exhibition and encourage friends to share it.

Making Your Mark in History – Ensuring that there are long term effects

Photograph and video your work in order to ‘make your mark in history’ and create a long-term effect for publicity. A printable online catalogue made up of photos along with some interviews, recordings and the online form of the guestbook would well do. Use, for example, You Tube to share your videos.


Decide on the object/ artifact to exhibit in the area and the composition in which you are going to present it, Give a name to your object and/or artifact or the composition in a way that it could be presented to the visitors through an identification tag. The name must be a catchy one that will have a sound effect on visitors. Remember writing a short but impressive legend to be published on the tag along with the name of the exhibit.

Make an application -if need be- stating that you want to be involved in the exhibition. You may need to fill in a form in which you may need to give information on the articles listed right above.




We believe that you have learnt a lot about how to hold a pop-up exhibition after reading through our modules as well as this one and hope that you will share your experiences and works in the related sections on our website. We are sure we will all be inspired by each other to take a step forward


  • Learn to create a theme pop-up exhibition
  • Learn to the need to build the exhibition around a specific concept
  • Develop skills and competencies needed for creating an exhibition
  • Acquire organisational and team management skills