We work extensively with contemporary artists, writers and musicians, commissioning new work, hosting residencies, staging exhibitions and initiating projects

Superman was a Foundling

Award-winning poet and playwright, and 2014 Foundling Fellow, Lemn Sissay MBE has created Superman was a Foundling. Through mural and graphic work Sissay has created a striking visual exploration of fostering and adoption in popular culture.

Sissay's project aims to reveal and elevate fictional stars of popular and classic culture who were fostered, adopted and orphaned. Names range from characters from the foundation myth of Ancient Rome to Steig Larsson’s The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo.

Dawn Chorus

Renowned natural history sound recordist and 2014 Handel Foundling Fellow, Chris Watson, worked with young care-leavers recording the sounds of the dawn chorus on the site of the original Foundling Hospital.

Inspired by the genetic link today’s birds have with those that sang here for the eighteenth and nineteenth century foundlings, Watson’s installation links past and present through a poetic meditation on the importance of place

Mead's Mysterious Medicines

Children from Great Ormond Street Hospital's bone marrow transplant and dialysis wards have created animations and medicine bottles inspired by the eighteenth century medical recipes of the Foundling Hospital Governor, Dr Richard Mead.

Working with Foundling Museum curator and artist Emma Middleton, and animator Shelly Wain, the children compared the medicines of the past to the present, before inventing their own imaginary medicine using ingredients that addressed their personal experiences of treatment. You can see the results of this project in the Introductory Gallery. View the animation here.


Composer in Residence

The Museum's inaugural Composer in Residence, Luke Styles, has been leading composition and music-making workshops with Year 6 children from Argyle Primary School and with pre-school children from Thomas Coram Nursery.

Luke will integrate the new music composed and performed in these workshops into a new work, a twenty-first century response to Handel's 'Foundling Hospital Anthem'.

Funded by the Leverhulme Trust.


Early Years

Since 2013, the Museum has run weekly art and music workshops with children and their parents from Thomas Coram Nursery.

These artist-led sessions allow children to experiment and explore through a variety of art activities, from sculpture and instrument making to drawing and painting.

Supported by funds from the Eranda Foundation.


Bach to Baby

These classical concerts for babies and their families were set up by mum and pianist Miaomiao Yu.

Performed by Miaomiao and other internationally-renowned musicians, concerts at the Museum are inspired by Handel and take place in the beautiful Picture Gallery.

What's On for Families



Foundling Stories

BA Illustration and Visual Media students from the London College of Communication have made objects in response to the story of the Foundling Hospital and the Museum's Collection. Their work forms a book, hand-printed by the students, which will go on display in the Introductory Gallery throughout November and December 2015.


First year BA Jewellery Design students from Central Saint Martins have made jewellery and art in response to the story of the Foundling Hospital. An exhibition of their work can be found in the Introductory Gallery, while a selection of the student’s jewellery will be on sale in the Museum Shop from November..

1A Arts

IA Arts Centre in Holborn have been working with young people aged 14-17 to make a film exploring issues around identity and loss, in response to the history of the Foundling Hospital. Participants have attended scriptwriting, film making and editing workshops at the Museum, and the resulting film will be screened at the Museum as well as at Warner Brothers in October.

This project is funded by BBC Children in Need.