(Bit of a longer blog posting…)
Just to give you a bit of background, the thinking behind this whole project is very much around ‘Vase Mania’: the vase being a symbol of the ancient world, a practical object and a design motif, I hope to restore its former status as the ultimate accessory.
Taking inspiration from early and mid-18th Century pieces, I wish to make particular styles from this period more accessible, taking them to new audiences, deconstructing and reworking to appeal to today’s consumer. To directly reference the originals, I proposed to take casts of detailed reliefs from pieces homed in the Museum’s Collections to use in model prototyping.
This week, I have been working with the amazing curators and conservators here at the V & A to put this idea into motion; helping me seek out objects deemed ‘safe’ to use and then aiding in taking casts using a non-toxic silicone. These I can then use to make a selection of sprig moulds to work into the final vase design with modellers in Stoke on Trent. The curators released selected items from the Ceramic Study Galleries for now and then two others in a couple of weeks from the British Galleries for me (a big honour and ask as it is only possible at two intervals a year, taking the technicians an hour to even open the cabinets!)