Monday, 19 October 2015

Day out in York

The other week I had a lovely day out in York, visiting museums. It was a bit of a mad day, leaving home at 6am and not getting home till 10pm, but it was worth it. The incentive for the visit was Patchwork & Quilting magazine asking me to review the Quilt Art Dialogues exhibition at the Quilt Museum.  I said yes, thinking I could tie it in with a family visit to the in-laws, who live near there.  Unfortunately, with the deadline and the trip to Alsace, I couldn't fit it in, so I went down for a day instead.  I'm so glad I did. This is the Quilt Museum's final exhibition, which is a shame as it is a lovely little venue, but realistically, given its location it was unlikely to succeed financially. However, for me, it was the perfect final show, with a small side exhibition of historical quilts and Quilt Art showing the possibilities of where quilting can go in the future.  No photos were allowed, but you can see the work on the Quilt Art site, where you can also buy the catalogue.
I was able to photograph the stairs, which I loved - they had covered the treads in photos from Inge Hueber's quilt.
Stairs at the Quilt Museum, featuring details from Inge Hueber's quilt on the treads

After the Quilt Museum, I had a pleasant amble through York in the sunshine to the newly reopened York Art Gallery, with the new Ceramics Centre.  There was so much to see and as part of the redesign, it was obvious that significant thought had gone into making the visitors' experiences as rewarding as possible.  There were sketchbooks and pencils on virtually every bench for you to record your thoughts and responses to the work.  
detail of Susie MacMurray - 'Halo', made in response to the 14th century religious painting - hard to see on this photo, but it is lots of loops of gold and was stunning
In some of the galleries with older works, there were contemporary pieces, made in response to the historical works. 
detail from Mark Hearld's scrapbook

There was a room of objects curated by Mark Hearld, a kind of cabinet of curiosities, full of his work and scrapbooks too.   It was interesting to see how he approached his work.

Felicity Aylieff - 'Hua De Tu An, Flower Pictures II'

The ceramics were really interesting too, and included a lot of information on the development of ceramics over the past 100 years, which, as a novice to ceramics, I found useful. 

Three vessels in the Contemporary Ceramics display

My head was definitely whirring with ideas by the time I got on the train home.  I'm still trying to find time to process them all!  If you do get a chance, a visit to the Quilt Museum is really worthwhile and this is your last opportunity, as it closes on 31 October 2015.
Schools project felt hanging, with artist Vivienne Morpeth

Detail of the felt hanging

Gordon Baldwin - 'Vessel for Dark Air'

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