Created by Brighton-based children's writer and illustrator, Aaron Blecha, Aliens, Zombies & Monsters: The Weird World of Aaron Blecha opens at The Novium Museum in Chichester from Saturday 28 September 2019. It invites people of all ages to explore how children's characters and books are created, and aims to inspire visitors to dream up characters of their own.

The exhibition will be packed full of life-sized aliens, zombies and monsters, ready to mingle with visitors of all ages. Beam aboard an alien spaceship, take a selfie as part of the zombie family, or join in with the monster mayhem!

Aaron Blecha is best known for books such as Goodnight, Grizzle Grump! and the Shark School series. The exhibition will give visitors a unique behind-the-scenes peek into the process behind his work, from the initial concept and doodles, to the creation of characters and finished books.

Aaron has created four new characters exclusively for the exhibition, all of which have been inspired by the Chichester District. We would like to introduce:

  • The Roman Bath House Monster
  • Tim Peake's Alien Co-Pilot
  • The Boxgrove Zombie
  • The Smuggler Monster

Visitors will be able to get creative and suggest names for these characters in a competition, which will run alongside the exhibition.

"The Chichester District has so much history for us to be proud of," says Councillor Roy Briscoe, Cabinet Member for Community Services and Culture at Chichester District Council. "It is great to see some fun and creative interpretations that will engage children in our rich heritage from a different angle. We are really looking forward to the arrival of our new resident aliens, zombies and monsters and hope that visitors will be inspired to add their own creations to the exhibition.

"The exhibition will include a creation station where visitors can draw their own characters and display them within the exhibition. It will also include an area that resembles Aaron's work space and three films showing the creation of some of Aaron's characters."

Exhibition creator, Aaron Blecha, says, "I want to show children, parents, teachers (everyone!) that it is possible for kids to utilise their talent, creativity, and imagination to create stories and the characters that live within them. It's okay to be fun, silly and to let your imagination go!"

Running alongside the exhibition will be a range of fun events, including two drawing workshops with Aaron Blecha: Make a Monster! from 10am-11:30am on Monday 28 October, and Create a Comic! from 2pm-3.30pmon Saturday 7 December. These workshops are recommended for ages 7-11 years and cost £6.50 per child, which includes a sketchbook to take home.

Aliens, Zombies & Monsters: The Weird World of Aaron Blecha will run from Saturday 28 September 2019 until Saturday 4 January 2020.

Admission is free, with donations gratefully received. Further information on the exhibition, related events and naming competition, is available on The Novium Museum's website or by calling 01243 775888.

This exhibition will replace Hollywood Rome: Reel Life in the Ancient World, which has been extended by a week owing to popular demand, and will now close to the public on Saturday 14 September.

Date of release: 19 August 2019

Reference: 3917