THE SECRET MUSEUM
SOME TREASURES ARE TOO PRECIOUS TO DISPLAY...
The Secret Museum is a unique treasure trove of the most intriguing artefacts hidden away in museum archives from all over the world – curated, brought to light, and brought to life by Molly Oldfield in a beautifully illustrated collection.
Who knows what’s hidden from view? Locked away in cabinets, secure storage and aircraft hangars.
Most of a museum’s collection never gets seen. It sits in the quiet dark of an archive waiting for a treasure hunter or obsessive researcher to root out its very existence. Under the streets of Manhattan priceless books are shelved; brick outbuildings in London’s East End house drawers of Victorian embroidery remembering foundlings long ago dead; body bags in Washington clothe space suits covered in real moon dust and in an unvisited aircraft hangar sits Auguste Piccard’s extraordinary invention, the balloon gondola…
This and many other extraordinary inventions, legacies, discoveries and artefacts have been visited and curated by Molly Oldfield into a Secret Museum. Rich in atmosphere and anecdote, suffused with the surprising emotion of a personal discovery, but grounded in fascinating factual detail, this is a unique and beautifully illustrated book.
The Secret Museum reveals sixty unknown artefacts and stories from all five continents, from Rome to Rio and Boston to Berlin. And like the very best mornings spent at a museum it promises to be idiosyncratic, surprising and enormously good fun.
...or pop out for a walk to your local bookshop and find a copy there!
PRAISE FOR THE SECRET MUSEUM
"Startlingly brilliant … I’ve rarely read a book so fuelled by sheer enthusiasm. It’s all quite delightful, a brilliant idea executed with great charm and unceasing joie de vivre"
"Oldfield’s genius is to see that museums have more stuff than they can display,
and to persuade curators to show her their buried treasures … her cabinet of curiosities
reflects a very engaging personality"
"This gorgeous golden-jacketed book is totally brilliant … It’s one of those rare
solution presents too, great for anyone of any age"
A LITTLE BIRD
A unique tome… beautifully illustrated."
"A boundlessly fascinating inventory of sixty never-before-seen Treasures too precious to display, culled from the archives and secret storage locations of some of the world's top cultural institutions"
MARIA POPOVA, BRAIN PICKINGS
"A treasure in itself, Oldfield's book entices readers to discover a wide variety of little-known and rarely seen artefacts that lie hidden away in vaults, warehouses and archives...In her very readable, enthusiastic, and often amusing style, Oldfield describes each discovery in a way that takes it from a formal introduction to an intimate encounter... [her] collection is an absolute must for anyone with a nose for secrets and treasures"
MOLLY ON NO SUCH THING AS A FISH
BBC LONDON INTERVIEW
Listen here (approx 1hr 9mins in)