Didn’t realise that some mixtures of Herbes de Provence contain lavender leaves as well as savory, marjoram, thyme, rosemary and oregano, but of course, rosemary and lavender are closely related.
My I remind you If you email me at abby(Replace this parenthesis with the @ sign)abbyjw.com I will send you the first chapter of my memoir Woman in a White Coat, and if you comment I will send you another. Hope to hear from you.
This year the MADE Design and Craft Fair was held in the Mary Ward House Grade 1 listed building in Tavistock Place. Founded by the Victorian novelist Mary Augustus Ward and financed by the wealthy philanthropist Passmore Edwards, it was built in 1898 as a settlement for the wealthy to improve the education of the urban poor. It is now a conference centre.
There was a wealth of different crafts on display – woodwork, wirework, pottery, jewellery, clothing and more. Unfortunately by the time you get to your 80s you have so many ‘things’ there is little incentive to buy and we just admired the beauty and craftsmanship of much of the work.
We loved the beauty and varied wood grains of the Shaker boxes by Murray Markovitch and have fond memories of the Shaker shop in Marylebone High Street we used to visit when we lived just round the corner – unfortunately long since gone, like so many of the craft shops in the area.
An eye-catching display of wired figures was just inside the door with this leaping winged figure ‘Wishful thinking’ by Linda Lewin, whose website also shows off her silver jewellery.
Amazing striped plates, bowls and jars by the ceramic artist Jin Eui Kim which he says are inspired by visual phenomena. We wished our cupboards weren’t already overfull of the ‘things’ we have collected in 60 years of marriage,
It was too early for us to have coffee and sandwiches or cake, but the food display in the café looked so elegant and appetising we were sorely tempted.
Not free, but very good value at £12, the British Museum runs 90 minute Highlight Tours of some of the most well-known of its millions of artefacts from all over the world including the Rosetta Stone, the Lewis Chessmen, the enormous Easter Island basalt statue known as Hoa Hakanai’a, the fabulous human-headed winged bulls from Assyria and much more.
For me, the British Museum has above all been about the wonderful sculptures and wall paintings from ancient Egypt – though as a child the mummies in their sarcophagi used to terrify me. The Pharaohs may have been cruel and incestuous and probably quite ugly to boot, but their statues and masks speak of a transcendent serenity.
There are several great things about the Queen’s Gallery. The paintings and other exhibits are in excellent condition, the signage is clear and informative, and if you agree to have your ticket stamped to say than the fee is a charitable donation you can come back as many times as you like for one year.
There is only the one Vermeer (1632-1675) Lady at the Virginal with a Gentlemanshown in the flyer but several Rembrandt (1606-1669) portraits, royal portraits, indoor Dutch scenes with their slightly wicked suggestiveness and much more – drawings, etchings and a pair of flower vases.
This was the time of the Tulip Mania when rare tulip hybrids changed hands for thousands of Dutch guilders. Brought originally from the gardens of the Ottoman Empire the craze reached extraordinary levels before suddenly collapsing. Expensive blooms required expensive, elaborate vases.
Trying to decide on which further education classes to enrol on for the New Year I saw that there were several courses of gallery visits at major London Museums and Galleries. Now funding has been cut for Further Education these courses are now expensive so I decided to investigate the free tours, starting with the V&A. the purchase of the land for which was funded by the Great Exhibition of 1851.
Once again the tour guide took as to rooms I had either not visited or just passed though. I had no idea there was such a vast collection of ceramics or that the galleries showed their development over the ages with so many excellent examples.