There was a national craze for postcards from 1898 to the end of the Great War in 1918, the so-called Golden Age of the Postcard. With up to six deliveries a day postcards could be used to arrange meetings, much as we do by texting today.
Picture postcards were produced as souvenirs covering every conceivable aspect of life and death and millions were sent through the post each week. Although Fulham Palace was a private residence, postcards were sold of the exterior, the interior and the gardens as well of the Bishop of London himself.
This exhibition surveys the variety of postcards from all periods relating to the Palace and explores what they can reveal about its history. It also includes embroidered postcards of the Palace and the garden, made by Fulham Palace volunteers, who took their inspiration from the silk cards produced during the Great War in France.
Printing a modern world: commercial graphics in the 1930s
Until 19 August 2018
A display of items from the National Art Library’s Jobbing Printing Collection, which opens a window onto daily life in the 1930s, offering a striking and original visual experience of a period when economic and political turbulence formed the backdrop to innovation and new ideas such as Modernism.
The Collection was developed between 1936 and 1939, when Philip James (then Deputy Keeper of National Art Library at the V&A) requested samples of work from many high-profile companies and designers across Europe and North America, as well as Britain.
His intention was to create an ‘open reference collection of commercial typography so that the trend of typographic design, both in this country and abroad, could be appraised by students’.
The Object of My Affection: Stories of love from the Fitzwilliam collection
Until 27 May 2018
Love is very much in the air in this exhibition, which contains objects alive with the range of emotions that it commands; from admiration and affection, joy and passion, longing and despair, to insults, indifference, grief and remembrance.
The exhibition will showcase the Fitzwilliam Museum’s collection of valentines, which date from the eighteenth century to the twentieth and include a wide variety of sentimental and decorative types as well as comic examples.
Alongside the valentines will be an assortment of other objects relating to the theme of love, including posy rings, love tokens and works by Dante Gabriel Rossetti (1828-1882) and James Gillray (1756-1815).
The Games We Played: an exhibition of childhood board and card games
Until 14 April 2018
Funny Families - early 20th century card game
This fun exhibition explores some of the most popular, as well as lesser known, board and card games from the 1920s through to the 1970s.
Discover more about the games played in ancient times, as well as some more recent favourites including board games, card games, dice and dominoes.
Do you remember Spoil Five from the 1920s, Battle Royal (1940s), Wembley(1950s)? Did you play Sooty Saves Sixpence (1960s) or Sum-It a decimal currency game from 1968?
Pop in to this free exhibition to have your memories rekindled and remember fun from a pre-digital age.
Discover how much of the most iconic British design was produced by immigrants to this country.
20th century design in the UK was profoundly shaped by the arrival of pioneering Jewish émigré designers from continental Europe. They brought with them a knowledge of modernism and radically transformed the practice and language of British design.
Don’t miss iconic posters for London Underground, the General Post Office and the War Office created by designers including Dorrit Dekk, FHK Henrion and Hans Schleger.
Curated by Rick Poynor, Professor of Design and Visual Culture at the University of Reading, this exhibition explores the evolution of poster design at the National Theatre, showcasing many classic examples.
From 1963 to the present day, each art director led the theatre’s graphic design studio in creating images for posters, programmes and now digital artwork. The exhibition features posters designed by Ken Briggs, Richard Bird, Michael Mayhew, Charlotte Wilkinson and current Creative Director Ollie Winser and the Graphic Design team.
The exhibition will include original posters, interviews with past and current Art or Creative Directors and will trace the changes in process, design and function over the past 50 years.
Soon after the outset of World War I, the poster, previously the successful medium of commercial advertising, was recognized as a means of spreading national propaganda with unlimited possibilities. Its value as an educational or stimulating influence was more and more appreciated. The poster could impress an idea quickly, vividly, and lastingly.
Historian Pearl James wrote “when World War I began in 1914, the poster was a mature advertising tool and artistic medium.” Lithography, paper rolled over a treated and inked stone, had evolved from the first uses in the late 18th century. By the mid-19th century, chromolithography was in use. Improvements in printing techniques allowed for large numbers of posters in World War I to be produced. Posters flew off the production lines like cartridges, helmets, and uniforms.
In almost every country involved in the war, the poster played its part as a munition of the war. The posters of 1914-1918 illustrate every phase and difficulty and movement: from recruiting to munitions work to war loans to the Red Cross to women’s work.
Posters as Munitions showcases the depth and breadth of the collection through a series of works on exhibition for the first time at the National World War I Museum and Memorial. Posters from France, Germany, Great Britain, Italy, the United States and more are featured, providing a sense of the global nature of this form of communication.
British historian Martin Hardie succinctly stated in 1920 the poster’s place in World War I history: “They had their story to tell and message to deliver. Their business was to waylay and hold the passersby and to impose their meaning upon them.”
Criminal Lives, 1780-1925: Punishing Old Bailey Convicts
Until 16 May 2018
Between 1700 and 1900, the state stopped punishing the bodies of London’s convicts and increasingly sought to reform their minds. From hanging, branding and whipping the response to crime shifted to transportation and imprisonment.
By the nineteenth century, judges could choose between two contrasting forms of punishments: exile and forced labour in Australia, or incarceration in strictly controlled ‘reformatory’ prisons at home. Which was more effective?
This exhibition traces the impact of these punishments on individual lives, following the men, women and children convicted in London from the crime scenes and trials through their experiences of punishment, and on to their subsequent lives.
Poster Girls will highlight some of the key female artists who have designed for London Transport and Transport for London including Dora Batty, Herry Perry, Laura Knight, Anna Zinkeisen, Margaret Calkin James and Freda Lingstrom.
The artists and featured work will be examined and contextualised by both the era in which they lived and worked and their style, looking at influences both from within the design community and from the wider world.
As well as stunning original posters from London Transport Museum’s collection, Poster Girls will include accompanying material such as letters, ceramics, photographs and original artworks.
This traveling exhibition from the San Antonio Public Library Collection is on a two-year tour of Europe, the Wiltshire Museum is the only UK exhibition venue for this exhibit.
The United States entered the First World War on 6 April 1917 and San Antonio and Bexar County were extremely important to the war effort. Over one-tenth of the soldiers deployed to the Western Front were trained through San Antonio’s military bases.
In 2006, the San Antonio Public Library Foundation undertook the task of looking through the archives and collection of Harry Hertzberg, to discover hundreds of vintage propaganda prints and posters from the War. These prints had not been seen in public since the 1930s and bring back waves of wonderful imagery from famous artists of the day towards the war effort.
The New Union Charade Fan depicting twenty-four riddles c1801
Technological improvements meant that by the mid-Eighteenth century, fans decorated with printed rather than painted designs were gaining in popularity. They could be manufactured in quantity, at speed and most importantly, at reduced cost. Fan retailers and print publishers were quick to catch on, churning out engraved or etched designs on paper mounted to sticks plainly fashioned of ivory, bone and wood – affordable to most levels of society.
Folding fans were no longer an accessory associated only with the very wealthy. An anonymous fan painter attempting to maintain his artful trade observes that women took up printed fans (somewhat theatrically referred to as ‘the Evils’) with enthusiasm. Polite society was aflutter with political trials, military propaganda, social satires and more. In fact there was hardly a subject that did not appear in some form or another on the leaf of a printed fan.
Early Printed Fans brings together a diverse array of fans from The Fan Museum’s unrivalled collections, and offers a unique and fascinating perspective on the cultural, political and social atmosphere of Europe in the long Eighteenth Century.