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The Colour Blue – From paradise to poison

Stalbridge Hall Stalbridge Hall, Lower Road, Stalbridge, Sturminster Newton, Dorset, United Kingdom.

Lecture Description Deep blue is the most popular colour in the world.  Perhaps it is redolent of velvety night skies and starry Summer evenings. It is thought to symbolize strength and wisdom. It has always stood for the cosmos and the Virgin Mary, as a colour of the intellect and spiritual healing and was the...

Sir Stamford Raffles – Art Collector and Founder of Singapore

Arthur Morison Memorial Hall Rowls Lane, Wincanton, Somerset, United Kingdom.

William Cho, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons Raffles, whose name is synonymous with a luxury hotel rather than the greatest Buddhist temple in the world, was the enlightened colonal administrator of Java, Indonesia. He discovered the 8th century temple of Borobudur, hidden under volcanic ash, in 1814, acquired wondrous artefacts in Java, such as...

The Kennedy White House

Stalbridge Hall Stalbridge Hall, Lower Road, Stalbridge, Sturminster Newton, Dorset, United Kingdom.

National Archives and Records Administration, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons This talk is about the White House’s most celebrated twentieth century residents. Others had been, perhaps, more intellectual, such as Eleonora Roosevelt, certainly others utterly perfidious, just to name Nixon for one, but no other couple who inhabited the White House were ever so glamorous,...

Public Sculpture

Stalbridge Hall Stalbridge Hall, Lower Road, Stalbridge, Sturminster Newton, Dorset, United Kingdom.

Public Art is a contentious subject. It is the most visible art form and therefore is an easy target. But how do they come to appear in our public spaces? This lecture tracks the development of public art over the last century and looks at various examples to see why are some loved and others...

Tulipomania – A 17th Century Passion in Art, Gardens and Collecting

Stalbridge Hall Stalbridge Hall, Lower Road, Stalbridge, Sturminster Newton, Dorset, United Kingdom.

Featured Image Attribute Pvt pauline, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons Description of Lecture The lecture explores the passion for the exotic and beautiful tulip flower which reached its height in Amsterdam in the 1630s. Collectors, besotted by the exceptional beauty of this new and exotic flower, speculated in and paid ever higher prices for...

RADICALS AND RIVALS

Arthur Morison Memorial Hall Rowls Lane, Wincanton, Somerset, United Kingdom.

HOW HENRY MOORE, BARBARA HEPWORTH AND BEN NICHOLSON CHANGED ART IN BRITAIN Henry Moore, Barbara Hepworth and Ben Nicholson are three of the most important British artists of the last century. Friends, neighbours and artistic rivals, their lives were intertwined through their personal relationships as well as through their shared determination to make new and...

`A Carpet Ride to Khiva and Central Asia’

Stalbridge Hall Stalbridge Hall, Lower Road, Stalbridge, Sturminster Newton, Dorset, United Kingdom.

Featured Image Attribute Khiva, minaret, minor, kalta minor, short minaret, unesco world heritage, majolica, turquoise, color, museum city. By courtesy PXFUEL. Description of Lecture This is a narrative approach to the revival of 15th century carpets in Khiva, a desert oasis in Uzbekistan. Illuminations on vellum – containing the only surviving representations of textiles from...

Eleanor Coade and her Stone

Stalbridge Hall Stalbridge Hall, Lower Road, Stalbridge, Sturminster Newton, Dorset, United Kingdom.

Featured Image Attribute Catching some welcome sunlight after the miserable weather earlier in the day (see next photo). This is the former mascot of the long-demolished Lion Brewery; it's now on the south side of Westminster Bridge, next to the former County Hall. There were three lions originally, made by WF Woodington in 1837 (using...

The Nativity in Art from Giotto to Picasso

Stalbridge Hall Stalbridge Hall, Lower Road, Stalbridge, Sturminster Newton, Dorset, United Kingdom.

Featured Image Attribute Giotto - The Nativity in the Lower Church, Assisi Description of Lecture From the 13th to the 20th centuries, the Nativity must be one of the most popular subjects of all with artists, north and south of the Alps, from Giotto, Fra Angelico, Rembrandt to Rubens. Sometimes the scene takes place at night, sometimes...

200 Years of Valentines

Stalbridge Hall Stalbridge Hall, Lower Road, Stalbridge, Sturminster Newton, Dorset, United Kingdom.

Featured Image Attribute By courtesy - PXFuel Description of Lecture At some stage in their life most of us have received or sent a valentine card. While enthusiasm for such a romantic gesture has fluctuated over the years, the symbolism has remained enduring. This talk explores the expressions of roses, hearts and cupids as depicted...