Friday, May 07, 2010

What an exhibition!

I had a wonderful time yesterday, travelling down to London on the coach with members of Cranford Quilters. We were all heading down to the "Quilts 1700 - 2010" exhibition at the V and A (Victoria and Albert Museum).

It is a beautiful building. The following photos show the gardens at the back where we rested with a lovely cup of tea after viewing the exhibition. It was cool, but the sun shone and children played in the shallow water of the pond.

The exhibition itself? This was really impressive. As a quilt group, we had all listened to an interesting talk before venturing into the exhibition itself. A fascinating range of quilts followed the talk, lighting was needfully low. Barriers were sensitively placed so that keen quilters and sewers could lean forward near enough to look but not touch. Even the stewards were quietly present, almost invisible as they looked after their charges.

Can you spot the lemons growing on this tree? It is such an unusual sight here in the UK. Lemons growing outside. This garden is sheltered on all four sides by tall Victorian buildings.

I have no photos of the exhibition itself. Bright lights would damage the sensitive old fabric.

Following the interesting talk, I was driven to learn more. I bought the hefty book which was published to go alongside the exhibition.

The V&A website gives details of their own collection of quilted items. You can find it here.

Outside the museum was this delightful figure:

Apparently, throughout the city of London there is a series of these beautifully decorated elephants. Go to the website to see more of these wonderful characters.


janet said...

It sounds like you had a lovely day. It must have been a very interesting and inspiring show.

I just love those beautiful old buildings. And the elephant is really something.

Toni said...

Oh, that sounds like such a fun day!!!!!!!

Margaret said...

How I envy you being able to get to the V&A for an exhibit! Although I was checking our local art museum today and will have some quilts from Winterthur (the museum that now houses the Plimoth jacket) and an exhibit of Tiffany glass in the future. The elephant is adorable. I've seen giant decorated things before - fish, cows, cars, moose, and one giant apple painted with Van Gough's Starry Night - but I really like that elephant.

Mandy said...

Thanks for all your comments Janet, Toni and Margaret. It was a really interesting show. The buildings are beautiful inside as well as outside - full of fascinating small details like the chandelier in the entrance and a wonderful pendulum clock hanging from near one of the upper balconies.
I need to get back there to explore much more. It is far too big a museum to be able to take in much more than one exhibit in a single visit.
Margaret, that future exhibition of quilts from Winterthur should be really interesting. I must find out more about that particular museum. I assume it has a website.

Anonymous said...

Did you know Chester is going to have rhinos around the town? Not seen any yet though.

Mandy said...

How fascinating! I must watch out for further information.