Ruskin's Good Looking!


This is a project about the ideas of John Ruskin (1819 -1900) the nineteenth century art critic, philanthropist and social thinker. Ruskin's The Elements of Drawing (1857) remains a touchstone for drawing research and is often cited for its core tenet that drawing sharpens visual attention.


This project puts this premise to the test, using it to uncover material ‘clues’ of Ruskin’s life embedded in christening clothes, dress suit, his signature necktie and hat which remain at Brantwood, Ruskin's house for the latter part of his life. It is the first time that these garments have been visually examined through drawing. In response to studying these garments at Brantwood, a series of new large-scale drawings will be produced and exhibited at Brantwood to mark the start of Bicentenary celebrations in 2019.

The exhibition and supporting catalogue will aim to provide new evidence for the value of drawing as a research method, contributing to a growing debate within studies of material culture. The exhibition catalogue will include images of the drawings from the exhibition, information about the research project and new essays by Anuradha Chatterjee and Ingrid Mida.

More information about this project and new images will be posted as new work develops. You can see the finished drawings here>>

An interview about the project with Dress Detective Ingrid Mida is also available on the British Council blog here>>

Waistcoat front and back
waistcoat detail
neck tie
at work
Ruskin's Good Looking (Shift)
Ruskins good looking cap
Ruskins good looking (gown)
Ruskins Good Looking (marked)
ruskins good looking (nests)
Ruskins good looking (fold) compressed
Christening gown detail