Exhibition Number 1: Handmade Tales, Women & Domestic Crafts

So back on September 1st I began my Thirty by Thirty Challenge where i came up with a long list of thirty things I wanted to do before I hit the big 3-0 and I was going to blog about it. Well, avid blog readers will be able to tell that I have not blogged once about the challenge since. It's not so much that I haven't been doing anything from the challenge, but actually that is kind of true. I have been keeping my journal of something that makes me smile every day however.

Anyhoo, on the 27th October, I went to see an exhibition entitled Hand Made Tales: Women & Domestic Crafts at the Women's Library. (Number 30 on my list is to go and see 15 exhibitions). The exhibitition blurb says:

"Hand Made Tales, curated by Carol Tulloch, is a timely exhibition focusing on the role domestic crafts play in many women’s experiences. It draws on the connections between the current revival of domestic crafts such as sewing, gardening, and cooking and the historical roots of the domestic arts within the home. The exhibition will allow visitors to explore and learn the stories of crafts and the women involved in them through personal tales and fun interactive projects. Come and discover treasures that share the intimate bond between generations from the once mundane to the now treasured heirlooms of families past."

I thought the exhibition was a good opportunity to read some of the stories associated with some of the items and items that had been loaned, but I also found some a little bizarre like the jar of jam and the jam pan that didnt really have a story attached to it.

What I enjoyed more however was an associated project called Crafted Footnotes by Nicola Malkin as part of the Museumaker project. Malkin created her own versions of domestic items, ranging in scale from the gigantic to the miniature. Her objects, which included a giant bar of soap, a 3D poster and a cluster of ladybirds, formed a trail of ‘hidden stories’. They were placed around the Library, in the foyer, on bookshelves and other furniture, with archive numbers that lead to the relevant sections of the archive. Each of the items related to a story such as the mini porcelain babies relating to the stories of Baby Snatching or the giant tea bag depicting a scrapbook of press cuttings relating to the women in the second world war.

What I enjoyed about this section of the exhibition was the way you had to walk around the read room library searching for the items but it was also a creative way to get visitors to look at some of the book titles held at the library.

It was a good start to seeing fifteen exhibitions, who knows what the next one will be but I hazzard a guess it wont include giant knitting needles!

Thursday, 18 November 2010 | 0 Comments

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