Search This Blog


Sunday, March 30, 2008

Art for Art's sake, Money for God's sake

This morning I was dragged to the William Morris collection in Walthamstow. Whenever I visit an art gallery I realise what a verbal person I am. My wife looks at the exhibits and reads the captions afterwards. I do things the other way around.
The building was Morris's home and the permanent collection seemed to do a good job of providing an introduction to him. I preferred looking upstairs at the work of Frank Brangwyn but then I'm a sucker for a good propaganda poster (left).
Since visiting I learn that the place is under threat of curtailment, if not closure. I sympathise with the councillors of Waltham Forest who have to line this up against all their other outgoings and decide whether it's something they should be funding; on the other hand we turned up expecting to pay and were told to put our money away. I think Morris, who spent most of his life trying to make sure his mother's mining shares could continue to underwrite his adventures in socialism, would have taken it.