This week I began work on a project at Brantwood, the John Ruskin Museum housed in the polymath's former home on the lakeside of Coniston Water in the Lake District. Over the next 20 months I will be working with Brantwood's collection of garments belonging to Ruskin. These include his christening gown and a men's dress suit, owned by Ruskin at the end of his life. The outcomes will form an exhibition at Brantwood in 2019, the bicentenary of Ruskin's birth. Over the next two years as the project develops, updates work in progress will be posted on this blog.
My first visit began with a 2 day period of intensive drawing, attempting close examination of some of the clothes. I had to begin with the definitive Ruskin garment, his blue necktie, so ubiquitous in the portraits and photographs depicting him.