Friday, November 27, 2009

Imperishable Beauty at the Cincinnati Art Museum

For those of you in the Ohio area, there's a new exhibit of Arts Nouveau Jewellery at the Cincinnati Art Museum. Entitled "Imperishable Beauty," the exhibit opened November 17, 2009, and features jewellery designed by RenĂ© Lalique, Henri Vever, Philippe Wolfers and Tiffany & Co. In addition, textiles by William Morris, posters by Alphonse Mucha, Tiffany glass, silver, and ceramics from the Cincinnati Art Museum’s permanent collection will also be featured in order to give a background for the art movements that influenced these designers.

One of the staggering aspects of Art Nouveau jewellery is the realism and detail that the best designers were able to bring to their work. This dragonfly brooch by Belgian artist Philippe Wolfers (Belgian, 1858–1929) is constructed from platinum, gold, enamel, diamond, ruby, and pearl, but it looks so life-like. Beautiful, useful, and true to nature - definitely wearable art!

The exhibition will run from now until January 17, 2010. For more information, visit the Cincinnati Art Museum website. There are a number of related programmes and events that sound like a lot of fun!

Images courtesy Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Top image: Orchid brooch, 1901. Georges Fouquet (French, 1862–1957). Gold, enamel, diamond, and pearl.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Pre-Raphaelite Christmas Stamps Released by Royal Mail

The Royal Mail has released a lovely set of Pre-Raphaelite stamps in time for the holiday season. The collection was chosen by designer Andrew Ross, who examined stained glass from churches throughout England in order to compile the artwork for the set of stamps. The final designs were taken from churches in Cumbria, Norfolk, Somerset, East Sussex and Wiltshire.The angel with the mandolin (middle) was designed by William Morris, while the Wise Man stamp (bottom middle) is from some stained glass by Edward Burne-Jones. The art for the 1st, 56p and £1.35 stamps are from stained glass created by Henry Holiday, who worked with Edward Burne-Jones in his studios.

"We are extremely privileged to have access to such a rich history of beautiful stained glass designs in churches and other buildings around the UK," said Julietta Edgar, Head of Special Stamps, Royal Mail.

"These precious images of the nativity have a timeless appeal and are a wonderful way of telling the story of Christmas here and around the world."

It appears that the stamps already have a following - Wales online reports that a number of the Pre Raphaelite stamps were stolen before they were made available to the general public. As a result, "ANYONE offered Royal Mail’s newest commemorative Christmas stamps on the cheap is being asked to contact police after a new delivery was stolen in a burglary." The thieves weren't just desperate romantics, though - they also stole cash, phone cards and cigarettes.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

William Morris Fan Club

Thank you so much for all of your comments on my previous post! I have been rather occupied with my baby girl this week, but I did find the time to discover a new site that I think will be of interest to readers of this blog. William Morris Fan Club is a blog devoted to William Morris' design and the Arts and Crafts Movement in general. Check it out!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

A New Arrival

As some of you guessed from my last post, our lovely little girl arrived last Wednesday evening. She is an absolute treasure, as you can see!