Discovering

La Specola in Firenze

I’ve fulfilled my lifelong dream to visit the world’s first Natural History Museum ‘La Specola’ in Florence. I’ve had a copy of the book Encyclopaedia Anatomica since I can remember and for whatever reason have pawed over the images of the anatomical wax models, and the rather racy silk pillows and silver fringed shrouds they are kept on. They did not disappoint. 

This was a few small rooms of the complete museum. First up was the geology section and the main body was room after room of taxidermy, few labels, an air of benign neglect and absolutely perfect. Everything just being what it is and dished out in the way it was as it opened in the 18th century. It must have been mind blowing. 

I lament the updating of museums to include ‘experiences’ and wish the air of quiet respect and revery were still the flavour of the day.

A panther made of Jasper with eyes of Citrine quartz circa 16th century with a 17th century silver base.
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Love at first sight cc – tapis handmade rugs at Maison & Objet

Nothing enlivens a room quite like an exciting rug, I often dream about designing the most outlandish rugs in terrific colour ways.

It was love at first sight last Friday when I came across the cc-tapis stand at Maison & Objet in Paris. It looks like they’ve been working with that brief all along. What a thrill to find cc-tapis. Now I can dream about designing rugs for them.

 

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Production Assistant Wanted

 

Blog

Bridie Hall Ltd is expanding! We are looking for a Production Assistant. The candidate must have a background in art or design and experience in making with a wide range of art materials along with an understanding of the fundamentals of production and time management. An eye for detail is crucial.

 

Starting part-time – Tuesday – Friday 9am – 6pm with a view to becoming full time in due course.

 

Please send your C.V. to info@bridiehall.com along with images of examples of your work.

 

Deadline: Monday 31st July.

 

 

Nothing is Original.

“Nothing is original. Steal from anywhere that resonates with inspiration or fuels your imagination. Devour old films, new films, music, books, paintings, photographs, poems, dreams, random conversations, architecture, bridges, street signs, trees, clouds, bodies of water, light and shadows. Select only things to steal from that speak directly to your soul. If you do this, your work (and theft) will be authentic. Authenticity is invaluable; originality is non-existent. And don’t bother concealing your thievery – celebrate it if you feel like it. In any case, always remember what Jean-Luc Godard said: “It’s not where you take things from – it’s where you take them to.”

[MovieMaker Magazine #53 – Winter, January 22, 2004 ]”
― Jim Jarmusch

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Everything you can imagine is real – Picasso

I have been obsessed with this article from a 1988 edition of World of Interiors since I came across it a couple of years ago. It is the C17th château of Bernard Picasso, the grandson of the great man himself who had also lived there throughout the thirties. Bernard had given decorators Elizabeth Garouste and Mattia Bonetti carte blanche to redecorate. Considering the provenance I find what they chose to do quite bold and incredibly charming. It has a feeling of playfulness and fun through the use of colour which I imagine makes living there very comfortable. I’m also in huge favour of the appliquéd curtains with patchwork borders.  The thing that really does it for me is the ultraviolet cabinet fitted with green glass. How can I get something like this in my life? Are there good coloured glass manufacturers in the UK that can make my dreams come true?

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Not everyone is smart, but everyone can be S.M.A.R.T.

Over the weekend I was talking about a problem with someone and trying to work out how best to approach it. ‘Approach it the S.M.A.R.T way’ they said and proceeded to explain what S.M.A.R.T. was. I’d never heard of it before and the more it was explained the more I felt like the clouds were parting.

In a nutshell, S.M.A.R.T. is a mnemonic acronym, giving criteria to guide in the setting of objectives.

Specific – being specific – who, what, where, when. 

Measurable – making it measurable – how will I know when it’s been accomplished?

Attainable –  how and what can I do to make this start to happen?

Realistic – setting small goals create an objective with which you are willing and able to work at the same time each goal should mark substantial progress

Timescale – by grounding everything within a time frame you set your subconscious into motion.  

It helped me immediately realise my method of trying to deal with most things was by attempting to get it all done in one go and that maybe it was time to try things the S.M.A.R.T. way. So I thought of a fun thing to apply it to which in turn can help address a small problem I have at the same time. 

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A part of my massive but lovely notebook problem.

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Workroom Profile V: Melodi Horne Soft Furnishings

I am sitting down with Melina Blaxland-Horne, newly installed in unit 17a Rugby Street here in Bloomsbury, surrounded by her beautiful silk ikat lampshades and cushions. The first question I have to ask her is “Where did the name Melodi Horne come from?”

A smile spreads across her face “Ok but don’t laugh.  No one has ever known this until now.  Me. Lo. Di.  Melina. Loves. Dimitri.” Dimitri, her husband, is sitting to my left “That’s right” he says “This is all about love.”

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Calling All Merchants!

 

There are a lot of exciting new products in the pipe line and we would love to spread these out the width and breadth of the country and beyond. We’re also not adverse to the odd exciting collaboration, any ideas?

If you would like to find out more about becoming a stockist do drop us a line at info@bridiehall.com.

 

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A time to try something new.

 

I’m obsessed with all ceramics and pottery, so much so I regularly take pictures of it in magazines as something to ‘save and enjoy later’.

My work mate Luke told me about a pottery class he took late last year that he really hated when it dawned on me. I AM GOING TO TAKE THAT POTTERY CLASS! And love it, and maybe make a pottery salami like in the picture below. Oh it will be fun. I can’t wait to start and share what I make. 

Luke, meanwhile, has decided he’d quite like to learn to violin, so any willing teachers based around Bloomsbury, do get in touch.

 

 

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Is your muff big enough?

 

I spent a couple of hours at Miss Pokeno’s HQ exhibition a couple of Saturdays ago slowly and carefully burning nasty things that had been said to me over my life time along with the 100’s and 1000’s of others on a large oak dining table. It was quite an eye opener.

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I don’t think I could have the concept of the show better than the journalist Bidisha for the HuffPostCulture blog. 

“Over the last three years, Miss Pokeno has been working on a new creative enterprise, launching in a couple of weeks: a collaboration with a (possibly fictional, definitely enigmatic) militant feminist activist group, the Sisters of Perpetual Resistance. Think of the Sisters as both the embodiment and the source of bold, fiery and beautiful art, culminating in the exhibition, which is called HQ. Opening in a South London space, the works in HQ have been created in response to a brief to “glorify that which is too ugly for words”.

The works combine an intricate, polished Victoriana beauty with the zealous confidence of the Suffragists and the brash, vocal energy of our current age of global protest. There’s a seven foot round Ikea Hefner/Stringfellow type sleazo bed covered in satin, velvet flowers and bluebirds protesting bad and clichéd sex, a barricade of eight brightly coloured Slut Riot chairs celebrating young militant women and a tailored marching coat with pockets concealing glass hammers and silver plated wrecking bars. For the aesthetically-minded militant like me, who appreciates fine materials and good craft along with my pain and rage, there are some gorgeous emu eggs filled with gold paint for throwing, a red velvetFuck The Fucking Fuckers banner and Too Ugly for Words, a large oak school table that has been inscribed by visiting women (and will continue to be inscribed) with all the misogynist insults we’ve had hurled into our faces, “from skunt to toxic fanny to cunt like a sewer to sad sloppy menopausal mess”, surrounded by tall chairs (the chairs of the boys’ club) covered in black bags of shame which also represent the shadowiness of women’s absence, our shrouding and erasure from public life and from all tables of power.

HQ is a blazing, committed, politically fervent and exquisitely crafted show, the meeting point of gentility and profanity, skill and ardour. You can give no finer tribute than to visit, approach the table and carve your own insult.

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HQ by Miss Pokeno and the Sisters of Perpetual Resistance will be showing at 1 Doyce Street, London SE1 0EU. HQ opens on November 14th for private views by appointment and will be open to the public on Fridays and Saturdays from 10am to 5pm until 13th December 2013.”