Showing posts from February, 2019

Medieval Port of London Conference 18th May 2019

Conference on the Medieval Port of Londo.

Russell Hotel - Titanic Dining Room

I have wanted to go in and look at the Russell Hotel since I first discovered that Charles Fitzroy Doll, who designed the hotel in 1898, also designed the Titanic's Ballroom. The exterior of the Hotel is covered in Doulton's 'The au Lait' terracotta tiles, and the interior is covered with amazing limestone cladding. The claddings are described in this pdf. On the second floor is a dragon - called Lucky George as his pair sank with the Titanic.

Bermuda National Gallery

Having gone to the Bermuda National Library { about the size of a village library  about to be closed down } I had no great expectations for the National Gallery.  Its position above the City Hall confirmed my pessimism but once entering the Gallery my spirits lifted as it is a lovely space over two stories with surprisingly interesting exhibitions. The star was an exhibition on Shepherd Fairey - rebel with a cause.  His punk, Russian Constructivism, Barbara Kruger, street art inspired exhibition showed a clear understanding of how to make an impact in public places. The video with the artist is as inspiring as it is informative.  Placing something in unusual places creates something memorable - maybe its obvious but combined with his flair for promotion it shows how he is able to provoke a reaction.  Like Banksy he has the eye for combining something striking with something meaningful.  So he puts a portrait of a typical american couple surrouded by art work from the Dollar, and the

Vincent Van Gogh in London

Excellent article by Iain Sinclair in Tate Etc Issie 45 Middle. His first house in London is unknown, and then he moved to 87 Hackford St, which reduced his commute to his job at Southampton Street, Covent Garden to about 45 minutes. He walked via Westminster Bridge.  While in London he visited cultural venues with his Sister, Anna, such as St Pauls Dulwich Picture Gallery, and Hampton Court.  He collected unpaid school fees in Whitechapel. He  moved to Isleworth, and heard a sermon in Kew Road Methodist Church. He did a sketch of Austin Friars, and copied Dore image of Prisoners Excercising in Newgate. We know something of his reading - the Arlesienne of 1890  L'Arlésienne , Kröller-Müller Museum , Otterlo shows him reading Uncle Tom's Cabin and Christmas Stories by Dickens. He also read 'Our Mutual Friend.'

The third City of London Ward Walk - Castle Baynard

The Castle Baynard Ward Walk We began with an introduction to the City of London and its 'democratic' (not) system.  Castle Baynard has an ex Lord Mayor as its Alderman (but that must be true of at least 50% of them).  He is public school educated but not Oxbridge and is a Tax expert who began with Arthur Anderson. We discussed the weird change in the area of the Ward in the reforms of 2003.  It was roughly from St Paul's south to the River until 2003 when they added an enormous (more than doubled the size of the ward) area outside the Wall in the Fleet Street area.  It is almost cut in half by an inroad of Farringdon Within Ward.  The shape is called the Tuning Fork. The explanation I don't know but the reform must have been based on equalising the wards in terms of 'population' or 'electors' or amenities and facilities. This is my sketch map.  The yellow is the new boundary, the blue/green is the historic one. You will see that Queenhithe has tak

Castle Baynard Ward Guided Walk

First time I've had time to post about a walk for a long time.  But tomorrow I am doing a pub walk which explores, in depth, a small part of the City of London. I am looking at Castle Baynard Ward which is south of St Pauls and west across the Fleet river into Fleet Street. Do feel free to come along.   Castle Baynard Ward 7.15 St Pauls Tube Exit 2    

Waterloo to be re-fought at the Kelvin Gallery Glasgow.

This looks like being an amazing event! I think you need to be a war gamer top attend sadly. Taking place in Glasgow June 2019

Need Money? Remortgage your museum?

It has just been announced that Glasgow is to remortgage museums to pay for equal pay settlements. This is a big surprise and I am surprised that not much seems to be made of it. It can't be a good idea can it?,UAU6,27LVJK,34UZU,1

Have you a definition of the modern Museum? ICOM wants one.

New definition of the Museum called for by ICOM.,UAU6,27LVJK,34UZU,1 The current definition is: “A museum is a non-profit, permanent institution in the service of society and its development, open to the public, which acquires, conserves, researches, communicates and exhibits the tangible and intangible heritage of humanity and its environment for the purposes of education, study and enjoyment.” The MA definition is ( 1998)  ' Museums enable people to explore collections for inspiration, learning and enjoyment. They are institutions that collect, safeguard and make accessible artefacts and specimens, which they hold in trust for society .'

The Latest About the Man with the Boots in the Thames

No one has yet suggested he was on his way to a fetish club, but it seems he was a fisher man who died in his 16th Century Waders. His teeth suggest he used them to control fishing lines or nets, and his bones suggests a physically stressful occupation. He was not buried but probably lost in the river and under 35 years old.

Triforium project at Westminster Abbey

The CBA organised a visit to the Queen's Diamond Jubilee Galleries at Westminster Abbey.  This 13th Century space has been cleared up and has been turned into a gallery with amazing views down onto the Abbey - particularly great to see the Cosmarti floor from on high. Here is their video We heard about excavations just by Henry VII's gallery in what was called Poets Corner Yard. Here they found archaeological sequences which included Dump levels containing prehistoric finds and Roman remains (but not in situ) the original chalk raft for the Abbey burial ground for monks including some coffins with head shaped ends for the corpses head. Shops and workshops in the area that Chaucer and Caxton had house and workshop in. Building levels from Henry III through to Gilbert Scott. The archaeological team cleared out all the dust of years that had accumulated in the gallery.  It included thousands of fragments of medieval painte