Friday, 2 August 2013

Walkerloo at The National Army Museum, London, July 2013.

 I was invited to show The Battle Of Walkerloo at the National Army Museum Toy Soldier Weekend in July 2013.  A few weeks before the event I was allocated a large empty room to inhabit.  I considered the operation and presented a quick sketch proposal to the museum which they liked.


I decided to paint a picture for one of the long walls to establish my occupation. I'd only a two week window in which to produce the mural and so I had to work fast and in quick drying stable arcylics.


I assembled an 'action' using my troops of all periods and scales against a bunch of unwanted mega corp plastic toys I bought from a second hand store.  I took photos of this scene and used it to whip out with paint a large scene on 14 (Honda Jazz transportable) panels.  I titled the picture 'The Last Stand Of The Battle Of Walkerloo Unfinished'.  At the centre of the painting in the museum space I stood a YouWalkerloo PhotoBooth painting.


On the other long wall I suspended 10 picture frames containing some of the gouache paintings I made in the production of my toy soldier army. At the back of the room I made plinths to display the Waterloo and Borodino sets entire and we made a toy soldier sales table by the exit.

walkerloo action on the floor at NAM 3

However it was on the floor in the centre of the room that the real play action took place.  My armies are at war with the plastic mega corp toys and when they play battle with each other they are conducting the real pretend war and furthering the campaign against the endless movie spume.  Victory can only come through play and wider distribution!

I play tested rules at a wargaming event in Lille and have finally evolved a set of rules that can be explained in about a minute and played out in about 40 minutes with much elastic band shooting action.

walkerloo action on the floor at NAM  closer1
getting girls on board is surley the biggest medicine for any toy soldier maker!
walkerloo action on the floor at NAM  closer2
walkerloo action on the floor at NAM  r2

For the two days of the show the two central battlefields saw constant action engaging and amusing much junior and senior General Public. The museum were very impressed by our performance. At the end of the weekend my toy soldiers re-established them selves in the National Army Museum shop where a substantial garrison is now displayed and more are boxed ready for immediate dispersal.