Tuesday, 27 November 2018

Reading trip Bayeux tapestry copy

We visited Reading Library in April 2018 to see the replica of the Bayeux Tapestry.
A talk by a staff member gave us a valuable insight into the original tapestry as well as the replica in Reading.

The Victorian Replica

"England should have a copy of its own"
It was the idea of Elizabeth Wardle to make the replica Bayeux Tapestry, now on display in Reading Museum. She was a skilled embroiderer and a member of the Leek Embroidery Society in Staffordshire. Her husband, Thomas Wardle was a leading silk industrialist. Elizabeth Wardle researched the Bayeux Tapestry by visiting Bayeux in 1885. The Society also based the replica on hand-coloured photographs of the tapestry held by the South Kensington Museum, now called the Victoria & Albert Museum, London. The aim of the project was to make a full-sized and accurate replica of the Bayeux Tapestry "so that England should have a copy of its own".

This trip provided great inspiration and enthusiasm for the group to start the canvas painting as part of the project. 

Evaluation of trip;
15 members participated, everyone learnt a lot and all enjoyed the day out to Reading Library. Although this trip was an added extra, and at a later stage, it was key to enabling the group to tackle the next stage of the project.

Wednesday, 21 November 2018

Poetry by Anna Harper

This project has lead to the general realisation that we have a wonderful poet in the group.
Her poems have become a valuable part of each canvas.

Patch me up and send me home

Patch me up and send me home

Once forgotten, haunted by the past.
Patched me up, sent me back to fight.
Not a care for how I felt as I could kill.
Worshiped by many, I'm treated like a king.
Patch me up, but don't send me back!


Remember the stories, the larks we shared,
The ones you carved hidden from the world,
Of drunken nights, we wish not to evoke.

Remember the noise, that crashing godly
Sound, of slaughtered men crying in agony.
Killed by heroes, believing they're right.

Tuesday, 24 July 2018

WW1 canvas Pump Rooms exhibition Preview

For 2017 to 2018 the group has been awarded a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund.
We spent August 2017 to the end of March 2018 researching World War 1, particularly the changing attitudes towards disability and injury, now and then.
We all enjoyed looking at books and researching the internet, going on field trips and inviting specialists to talk at the Westbury Centre.
During April to July we worked on a 7-meter canvas depicting the events of WW1, taking inspiration from the copy of the Bayeux Tapestry after a visit to Reading Museum.