My niece Maya, who lives in London, sent me some pics from her visit to The Museum of Brands yesterday. She said it reminded her of me. Well, I couldn’t be more flattered. And of course, to me, visiting this museum would be like Disneyland with brands!

But, what’s the story behind this unique Museum?

More than fifty years ago, consumer historian Robert Opie began to unravel the fascinating story of how consumer products and promotion had evolved since Victorian times.

“I was struck by the idea that I should save the packaging which would otherwise surely disappear forever. The collection offers evidence of a dynamic commercial system that delivers thousands of desirable items from all corners of the world. It is a feat arguably more complex than sending man to the Moon, but one still taken for granted”.

Ready, set, go, Brand Museum!

By 1975 Robert had enough material to hold his own exhibition, The Pack Age, at the Victoria & Albert Museum. In 1984 he opened the first museum devoted to the history of packaging and advertising in Gloucester.

A brand new Brand Museum in Notting Hill

In the early 2000s, the collection needed a new home. With the help of global brand agency pi Global and founding sponsors Cadbury, Twinings, Vodafone, Diageo, Kellogg’s and McVities, the Museum became a charity in 2002 and opened in Notting Hill, London.

After ten successful years, the Museum had outgrown its building and in 2015 relocated to a larger site nearby, just around the corner from the world-famous Portobello Road Market. The relocation project added new galleries, event spaces and garden. 

A place to look, learn and debate

The Museum presents temporary exhibitions, talks, webinars and workshops, to create and debate ideas and examine the role of brands in history and the modern world. It also holds a learning program for schools and universities, attracting more than 20,000 students a year.

I love the idea of ​​a brand museum. We live immersed in brands, they are part of our lives, they describe us, we admire or criticize them, we buy them, compare them and follow them on social media, and we cannot imagine our current life without them.