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SHNH visit to Mrs Delany exhibition

SHNH visit to Mrs Delany exhibition

SHNH members enjoyed a special visit to the Mrs Delany and her Circle exhibit at Sir John Soane’s Museum in London.  Led by Gina Douglas, Meetings Secretary, members viewed the exquisite embroidery, botanical collages, drawings and garden designs of Mary Delany who was at the centre of artistic, literary, fashionable and political life in 18th century England and Ireland.

Mary Delany numbered Handel, Swift, Pope and Walpole among her friends and was described by Edmund Burke as a woman of fashion for all ages. Best known for her detailed botanical collages, which she called "paper mosaicks", the exhibition explores the intersection of the worlds she inhabited and draws upon a wide range of handcrafted items including textiles, landscape drawings, manuscripts and of course the paper cuts and collages.

This exhibition, organised by Sir John Soane’s Musuem and the Yale Center for British Art, New Haven, CT, USA, is accompanied by a major publication Mary Delany and her Circle published by the Soane and the Yale Center for British Art.

Exhibition: Mrs Delaney and her Circle / Promiscuous Assemblage, Friendship &The Order of Things, Sir John Soane’s Museum, London is on until May 1 2010.

Image: Mary Delany, Portlandia Grandiflora, 1782, collage of coloured papers with watercolour and body colour on black ink background, © The Trustees of the British Museum