Exotic Creatures

14 November 2015 to 6 March 2016
Prince Regent Gallery
Admission payable, members free 

This temporary exhibition explores animals in royal collections, menageries and early zoos, and political beasts in the period 1750 to 1850. Discover the fascinating story of the first living giraffe in the UK, given to George IV as a diplomatic gift in 1827, plus the history of travelling menageries performing in London and Brighton, and other exotic creatures.

The Zoological Gardens, Regent’s Park. Lithograph by George Scharf; published 1835
The Zoological Gardens, Regent’s Park. Lithograph by George Scharf; published 1835

Works on show include satirical prints and original menagerie bills, sculptural and ceramic pieces including a bronze rhinoceros and colourful Staffordshire figures, as well as paintings and archival material. A painting of liger cubs presented to George IV will be on public display for the first time.

All the family can enjoy the exhibition and children are challenged to complete the Royal Pavilion Creature Trail (purchase at the admission desk). Can you find the dragons, serpents and birds as you explore the Royal Pavilion on your way to the Exotic Creatures exhibition?

Three ‘liger’ cubs bred between a lion and a tigress at the Royal Menagerie, Sandpit Gate, Windsor Great Park, October 1824, Attr. to Richard Barrett Davis, c1820-1830.
Three ‘liger’ cubs bred between a lion and a tigress at the Royal Menagerie, Sandpit Gate, Windsor Great Park, October 1824, Attr. to Richard Barrett Davis, c1824-1830.

Free with Royal Pavilion admission

Please note: this display includes historical prints depicting animals in menageries and circuses before the introduction of animal welfare laws

The Prince Regent Gallery is on the first floor and accessed via a staircase. Visit our accessibility page for more information.

 

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