Showing posts with label Yale Center for British Art. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Yale Center for British Art. Show all posts

February 19, 2010

Move Over Harvard Glass Flowers...Mrs. Delany is in the house

A Pancratium umbel cut from paper in the 1700's by paper artist Mary Delany ( British Museum Image)

It may seem silly to report on an art exhibition after it closes, but this artist is worth knowing more about, and if you find yourself in London over the next few months, let's say while attending the opening of the Chelsea Flower Show or visiting Kew, you might want to check out an exhibition that rivals the Glass Flowers at Harvard, but this time crafted in Paper. I introduce you to Mary Delany, and her extraordinary papercut botanical illustrations.
There are some things that I just seem to find late in life, such as the Harvard Glass Flowers, which I visited for the first time last year, (Yes, they are absolutely worth seeing and are amazing). See them at the Harvard Museum of Natural History ( thanks ready Anonymous, who kindly pointed out that the Glass Flowers are at the Harvard Museum of Natural History, not the Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology, instead, it is adjacent to it. I don't have an option in Blogger to slash-out corrections).

While snooping around the internet last week, I came upon a plant artist which I was not familar with, although many of you may be - Mary Delany (1700 - 1788); whose elegant, luminous cut paper flowers rival the most delicate floral paintings from England. Most incredibly, Mrs. Delany did not start her craft until she was well into her sevenites! So I though that I would share her name and direct you to her work- it's worth looking at.

I think that her work is equally as interesting as the Glass Flowers for many reasons, but mostly because they were created two centuries ago. Her extraordinary work continues to inspire and amaze those who have been enlightened, and a recent museum exhibition has been curated which speaks to her body of work. This touring exhibition just closed at the Yale Center for British Art, and opens this month in London. It is entitled 'Mrs. Delany and her Circle' , and although Yale was its only venue in the United States, (it closed January 3rd, 2010) you can, I believe, still get a publication (need to check on this). The exhibition now is open now in London, at the Sir John Soane's Museum, (Feb 6th to May 10, 2010).