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The GNM Archive

Exhibitions and loans

Exhibitions and displays allow us to share the archive beyond our reading room. In recent years artwork, objects, photographs and written records from our collections have been exhibited across the country and internationally.
The Picture Library
The Photographers' Gallery, 2021
Made up entirely of prints from our Guardian archive, this exhibition showcased more than 200 editorial images in the newspaper's bicentenary year.
The Picture Library exhibition, The Photographers' Gallery, 2021. Photograph: Luke Dodd
Posy Simmonds Collection
Posy Simmonds' cartoons and illustrations have appeared in the Guardian since the 1970s. Our extensive collection of her original artwork has been featured in recent exhibitions at the Cartoonmuseum, Basel in 2021 and the Bibliothèque publique d'information, Paris earlier this year.
Manchester’s Guardian
John Rylands Research Institute and Library, 2021
This exhibtion marked 200 years of The Guardian, bringing together items from our archive and the Manchester Guardian archive at the host instution in the newspaper's home town.
2021 exhibtion at John Rylands Research Institute and Library: Manchester’s Guardian: 200 years of the Guardian newspaper. Photograph: John Rylands Research Institute and Library
Edward Snowden collection
Our most frequestly exhibited objects include a collection of destroyed computer components. These smashed hard drives, monitors and USB sticks once contained NSA files leaked to the Guardian by Edward Snowden. They were destroyed on GCHQ orders and the broken fragments transferred to our archive. A dismantled MacBook Air from this collection is on long term loan to the V&A and currently on display in their Design 1900 – Now gallery. In recent years similar items have been included in a number of exhibitions across the UK and abroad:
  • Top Secret: From ciphers to cyber security. The Science Museum Group, London, Manchester and Bradford, 2019-2022

  • Breaking the News: 500 Years of News in Britain. British Library, London, 2022

  • From Luther to Twitter: Media and the Public Sphere. Deutsches Historisches Museum, Berlin 2020-2021

  • Restless Youth: Growing up in Europe, 1945 to Now. House of History, Brussels, 2019-2020

  • I think [the smashed harddrive of one of the Guardian's computers] is one of the most amazing things in the show
    Samira Ahmed
    Breaking the News advisory panel chair, British Library
    In house displays
    As well as loaning to external museums and galleries, we use tours and displays to open up our collections to current Guardian and Observer staff.
    Staff archive display for 20th anniversary, 2022. Photograph: Guardian News & Media Archive
    Photography from: Cartoonmuseum Basel, Hervé Véronèse and Claire Mineur at the Bpi, Luke Dodd and John Rylands Research Institute & Library
    Registered charity: 1153865