IWM will launch brand-new galleries and offer an exciting line-up of events and exhibitions as part of our 2023 programme.
At IWM London, The Blavatnik Art, Film and Photography Galleries will bring IWM’s world class art collection together with our extensive film and photography collections for the very first time, whilst our new exhibition Spies, Lies and Deception will explore the role of deception in conflict.
Northern Ireland: Living with the Troubles will invite visitors to unpack this recent conflict through the multiple perspectives of individuals who lived through it.
The museum will also mark poignant anniversaries such as Windrush 75 and the 20th anniversary of the invasion of Iraq.
At IWM Duxford, we will be celebrating five decades of inspiring sky-high entertainment as 2023’s flying season will mark 50 years of Duxford Air Shows.
Read on to discover more about what you can expect at IWM in 2023. Sign up for our eNews to keep in touch and receive updates from the museum.
Generations: Portraits of Holocaust Survivors
IWM North, 27 January - summer 2023
Generations: Portraits of Holocaust Survivors is a photography exhibition featuring over 60 contemporary portraits of Holocaust survivors and their families, shining a light on the full lives they have lived and our collective responsibility to ensure their stories live on.
Initially staged at IWM London in 2021, this exhibition at IWM North will include brand new photographs of survivors from the North West region alongside the original portraits. Taken by members and Fellows of the Royal Photograph Society (RPS), as well as RPS Patron, Her Royal Highness The Princess of Wales, these powerful portraits depict the special connections between survivors and the younger generations of their families.
Ukraine: Photographs from the Frontline
IWM London, 3 February - 8 May 2023
The invasion of Ukraine by Russia in 2022 shocked the world. For those living in Donbas and Crimea, however, the harsh reality of war has loomed since 2014, foreshadowing a conflict which has become one of Europe’s most devastating since the Second World War. Continuing its tour from IWM North in 2022, Ukraine: Photographs from the Frontline displays images from renowned photojournalist Anastasia Taylor-Lind, taken during her time in Ukraine between 2014 and June 2022, documenting the devastating reality of living amidst conflict.
© IWM (OP-TELIC 03-010-37-075)
Iraq Invasion: 20th anniversary
IWM North, March 2023
On 20 March 2003, a United States-led coalition which included British forces launched the ground invasion of Iraq. Their stated aim was to rid the country of weapons of mass destruction and end Saddam Hussein’s support for terrorism. The invasion was a military success but came with dire consequences. Destruction and looting left many Iraqis without basic necessities and unemployment was made worse by the disbandment of the Iraqi army. A violent insurgency developed across Iraq and British forces and civilian workers found themselves under attack. In 2023, IWM will mark the 20th anniversary of the invasion and a conflict in which 179 servicepeople died before Britain formally withdrew combat forces in 2009.
© IWM (CH 13441)
IWM London, June 2023
On 22 June 1948, over 800 men and women from the Caribbean disembarked from the HMT Empire Windrush after it docked at Tilbury, Essex. They came to find work and to start new lives in Britain. For many, it was not just an arrival, but a return. They had served in the UK during the Second World War, in the armed forces or as civilian workers. Marking 75 years since the arrival of the Empire Windrush, IWM will explore this foundational moment in British history, highlighting the wartime service made by people from the Caribbean, many of whom went on to help rebuild a Britain scarred by war and shape the British society and culture we share today.
© IWM (A 31890)
Korean War: 70th anniversary of the Armistice
HMS Belfast, July 2023
July 2023 will mark 70 years since the signing of the Korean Armistice Agreement on 27 July 1953, an armistice which ended direct hostilities between North Korea and South Korea. The three-year Korean War was both a struggle for Korea and a major escalation of the Cold War, with the United Nations led by the USA intervening to defend South Korea and China and the USSR supporting North Korea. To this day, the two Koreas still exist side by side in an uneasy and hostile peace. This summer, IWM will mark the Armistice by highlighting the prominent role played by HMS Belfast which served off Korea between 1950 and 1952, firing more shells than during the Second World War and seeing three members of its ship’s company die during the conflict.
Northern Ireland: Living with the Troubles
IWM London, 26 May 2023 - 7 January 2024
The Troubles engulfed Northern Ireland in conflict for nearly 30 years. It was – and remains – a contentious period, with roots going back centuries. A fragile cease fire was signed in 1998, yet many aspects of the conflict remain unresolved to this day and are highly contested by those who experienced and participated in the conflict. This exhibition will invite visitors to unpack the Troubles through the multiple perspectives of individuals affected by the conflict.
Find out more about Northern Ireland: Living with the Troubles
IWM Duxford Flying Season: 50th anniversary
IWM Duxford, April - October 2023
Celebrating five decades of inspiring sky-high entertainment, 2023’s flying season will mark 50 years of Duxford Air Shows.
The Duxford Summer Air Show will take place on 24 and 25 June, promising adrenalin filled action and fun for all the family, whilst the Battle of Britain Air Show on 16 and 17 September will see Spitfires, Hurricanes and other iconic warbirds take to the skies in commemoration of the Second World War.
Duxford Flying Evening will also be back and there will be an extra special Flying Finale on the same date that the first ever Air Show took place in 1973. A series of themed Flying Days will also be announced shortly completing the jam-packed 2023 Flying Season programme of events.
Spies, Lies and Deception
IWM London, 29 September 2023 - 31 March 2024
Deception has always been used in wartime to gain an advantage over the enemy and protect our secrets.
But in the grey area between war and peace, is deceit acceptable? And should we spy on our friends as well as our enemies?
This major exhibition at IWM London will look at the tricks, lures and espionage that make up the secret world of deception. Visitors will explore some of the most audacious deceptions of the last hundred years to reveal how these real-life fictions have changed the course of conflict and the lives of the people who created them.
Find out more about Spies, Lies and Deception
Blavatnik Art, Film and Photography Galleries
From its inception in 1917, artists, photographers and filmmakers have been at the heart of IWM’s work. Their experiences fundamentally shape our understanding and perceptions of war, as they work to capture the visceral, sensory and psychological, the everyday and the extraordinary. Covering 1000m² of IWM London’s third floor spaces, these striking new galleries will offer visitors an opportunity to connect with IWM’s rich and diverse visual media collections. For the first time, the art collection will be brought into meaningful dialogue with IWM’s extensive film and photography collections, which include over 23,000 hours of moving images and over 11 million photographs.
IWM History Festival
IWM Duxford, 25 & 26 March 2023
Visitors to the new two-day IWM History Festival will be immersed in First World War, Second World War and contemporary conflict history at IWM Duxford this spring.
With special guests and curators, author talks, book signings, handling sessions, behind the scenes insights and the chance to see objects from IWM’s collections up close, including inside IWM’s Spitfire N3200 and the Avro Lancaster. The full programme will be announced soon and tickets are on sale from January 2023.