Monday, 22 March 2010

The art of dressing up! part 1

I've decided to give the Dressing Table Gallery it's own post each week as I think it was getting a bit lost under the other postings about my other art projects. So keep an eye out each Monday as I post up dressing table photos and project info!

This week I have exciting news! I was recently contacted by The Potteries Museum and Art Gallery based in Stoke. It turns out they are planning a project based around the concept of getting ready to go out perhaps with a burlesque element, and wondered if I would like to get involved as my art work uses burlesque themes and I am currently focusung on dressing tables, and the art of getting dressed up!

Today the Collections Officer for Arts and the Documentation Assisitant came to my studio for a chat and we have planned for me to visit the Museum in early May to view the Decorative Arts and Costume collections! I am so excited! In time we hope to collaborate on an art project using pieces from the collection. We have already discussed ideas, but we all think seeing the space and the actual pieces will bring things together and we should then be able to set things in motion.

I can't wait to see the collection which features costumes dating from the 15th Century to the present day and the Bagot Collection; jewellery, accessories and clothes all belonging to Lord and Lady Bagot between the 1940's and 1970's. The Museum has also kindly offered to help me collect more photos of people's dressing tables for my project! Stay tuned to find out how things progress...

This weeks Dressing table photos come from Zoe James a jewellery artist from the Manchester area UK

Zoe says of her dressing table,

'its a bit messy as I like to have a lot of the objects I collect around in my personal space. Some are gifts from friends like the flowery compact and cake stand others i have just amassed from car boot sales and charity shops. The photos on the wall are all family pictures, I like to have them up as I don't get to see my family as much as I'd like. The flowery images on the wall are old cards given to me by a friend. I am very sentimental!'

To take part in one of Zoe's fab jewellery making classes based in the North West visit her website
Or take a look at her range of jewellery and metal work at

The thing I like about these photos is that they immediatley make me think they belong to a story, at first glance the dressing table looks very vintage covered in antique style artifacts; a mirror set, powder pot and what looks like an old style medicine bottle, I can't help imagining the Victorian lady who might own it who has a secret laudanum habit!
But on closer inspection, you see oddities which don't add up; a cake stand doubling as a jewellery stand, and some sort of tool which only makes sense when you realise what Zoe's occupation is.

They are great photos to help towards my research about belongings and narrative!

If you would like to get involved and send in your dressing table photos please contact me:

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