Wednesday, 27 January 2010

Fantastical Beasts

A beautiful escape from reality, the imaginative depiction of Fantastic Beasts in French textiles. Beasts from fairy tales or myths & legends always capture our imaginations and remind us of thrilling tales told to us as children. Beauty & the Beast. Perhaps there is a bit of the Beast and some of the child in all of us, which is why we love these imaginative images so much.

Tuesday, 26 January 2010

Art Nouveau, Art Deco & Late Victorian French Prints

Here are a selection of late 19th century and early 20th century French printed fabric, some I have had for a while, some have sold a while ago and a few I obtained last week on my successful buying trip.

The first five are light and airy, quite cheap and basic corded cottons, a fabric I believe is known as 'rep'. They all date to around the 1930s, and are Art Deco in style, they would have been used for curtains and quilts. French Art Deco was much more sinuous and closer to art Nouveau than most other countries, but I like that! I find some very angular more typical Deco designs less appealing.

The next 3 are Art Nouveau panels dating to btween 1895-1910, their sinuous styalisation typical of the period. Art Nouveau flowers always look so glamerous!

The final prints are Victorian, and date to about 1880, cluttered, styalised, full of pattern and over-blown gorgeousness. So typical of an era that had gone through and was still going through such momentous change; this is reflected in the new technology brought to bear in the textile industry, and in the influence on design & pattern of many different cultures.

Saturday, 16 January 2010

Victorian Berlin woolwork: The Young David playing his harp to soothe King Saul

This is a beautiful Victorian Berlin woolwork picture, quite large, and entirely worked in petitpoint in wool with silk highlights on canvas.

It depicts a scene from the Bible's Old Testament, with the young David playing his harp to soothe the torments of King Saul. The colours are beautiful, bright and unfaded, and I like the sinister, brooding feeling that is conjured by the intensity of Saul's gaze and the worried expression on the face of the woman juxtaposed with the innocence and rapture of the young David as he makes music.