Friday, 14 September 2012

Another Peasant Tree

Having recently completed a MBA where I used 'Google Scholar' quite extensively for my dissertation, I have just started looking to see if there is any more Peasant Arts work on Google Scholar that I have not previously seen.

In Victorian Embroidery: An Authoritative Guide (Morris, B., New York: Thomas Nelson, 1962) there is a peasant tapestry of a tree which is similar in the entwined trunk design to a curtain illustrated in The Artist (November 1897) and featured in the Copse of Peasant Trees post.  The piece is described as being designed by Godfrey Blount and made by the Haslemere Peasant Industries around 1900, and being a "linen on linen applique embroidered in coloured silks".  This seems to be in private hands, a "Miss E. Hosslin" who ran the Peasant Arts shop in Haslemere after taking over the Haslemere Weaving Industry in 1933.  Compared to the curtain in The Artist, this is more elegant in length, has more intricate detailing on the leaves and patterning down the sides and bottom which I have not seen on other Blount tree tapestries.

Peasant Tapestry designed by Godfrey Blount c.1900
from Victorian Embroidery: An Authoritative Guide
(Morris, B.,Thomas Nelson, 1962 )

This is definitely a more refined piece, though not to everyone's taste.  Morris quotes the architect Baillie-Scott from The Studio (Vol. 28, 1903) "who made many designs for embroidery himself, speaks rather scathingly of the Haslemere work stating that "it is sometimes called peasant embroidery, probably because it is seldom practised by peasants and cannot be strictly described as embroidery.  In this the outline is made a feature of the design and like the lead in a stained-glass window, separates the different materials" (ibid).

Curtain of Peasant Tapestry,
designed by Godfrey Blount
The Artist, November 1897

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