An exhibition entitled "For Your Eyes Only:
Ian Fleming and James Bond" will open at the Imperial
War Museum in London in April 2008...
Ian Fleming Exhibition Announced
18th August 2007
An exhibition to celebrate the world's most famous spy will
be opened at the Imperial War Museum in London next year. "For
Your Eyes Only: Ian Fleming and James Bond" will open in
April 2008 and is the first comprehensive exhibition to cover
the life and works of 007's creator.
James Taylor, the curator of the exhibition, explained that
although Bond was Fleming's fantasy version of himself, "they
were two different people. Bond is, in some ways, who Fleming
would have liked to have been. During the war he worked in Naval
Intelligence but it was a desk job. He wasn’t able to partake
in any frontline operations. Bond also acts as a mouthpiece for
Fleming’s own world view, particularly as regards Britain’s
role in the world."
From his first appearance over the gaming tables in Casino Royale,
Bond lit up dreary, ration-card Britain. His adventures fulfilled
a yearning for travel, exotic food and luxury while embodying
a dashing, independent idea of Britain in an increasingly frightening
Cold War world, Mr Taylor told The Times.
Above: The exhibition will be
housed at the Imperial War Museum, London, UK
According to The Times, For Your Eyes Only will show how the
Bond plots, locations and villains were rooted in Fleming’s
experiences during the Second World War and as a well-travelled
reporter. It will examine to what extent the books and films
reflect the reality of the Cold War and life in postwar Britain
and how far they were a product of Fleming’s prodigious
imagination. Rare material on display will include a map of the
Mercury News Network, established by Fleming in the 1950s to
collect information and intelligence from Sunday Times foreign
correspondents; notes for the scandalous
Thrilling Cities series in which Fleming explored the casinos and brothels of the world’s
most glamorous metropolises; annotated Bond manuscripts; the
Colt Python .357
Magnum revolver presented to Fleming by the Colt company; and the manuscript for Chitty Chitty Bang Bang,
Fleming’s other enduring classic.
Above: Ian Fleming poses with a
copy of his short story collection "For Your Eyes Only"
The organisers also hope to track down the golden typewriter
that Fleming used and to secure a letter to the author
written by a Major Boothroyd, advising him on what handguns
he thought would be most appropriate for Bond.
are looking at the phenomenon that the films became, because
they offer another way of looking at Fleming’s work.
We want to put across the idea that the film Bond is a
very different man from the literary Bond. He has a sense
of humour, he sleeps with far more women and he has much
less of a conscience than the character on the page. Cubby
Broccoli took Fleming’s ingredients and turned them
into his own dish."
For Your Eyes Only: Ian Fleming and James Bond, supported
by The Times will run from April 25, 2008, to March 1,
2009, at the Imperial War Museum.
A book to accompany the exhibition, "For Your Eyes
Only: Ian Fleming and James Bond" by Ben Macintyre,
is due to be published by Bloomsbury in April.
Fleming - Literary Coverage