Friday 30 August 2013

Modern Takes on the Cabinet of Curiosities - Joan Lennon

Here at History Girls, we have an occasional series loosely based around Cabinets of Curiosities.  So far we've had Celia Rees' fascinating overview, Laurie Graham's succulent samovar, Paul Dowswell writing about Rudolph II's cabinet, Penny Dolan's beautiful coronation shell and Caroline Lawrence's report on the Beaney House of Art and Knowledge.

And today it's me with one of my favourite museums - The National Museum of Scotland in Edinburgh - and its take on the theme.  The renovated Grand Gallery was re-opened in 2011 with one whole side of its beautiful white ironwork expanse given over to A Window on the World.  Which is basically a gigantic Cabinet of Curiosities - hard to photograph but stunning to look at!  And the fact that the glass elevators are placed the way they are make visitors who travel in them part of the Cabinet as well - such a neat idea!  

And in the Early People gallery, Eduardo Paolozzi, Scottish sculptor, made these statue-exhibit-cases.   

Modern meets ancient, sculpture wears artefacts, cabinet becomes curiosity!  If you get the chance, come and have a look for yourself - you won't regret it!

Joan's website.
Joan's blog.

(photos by Joan Lennon)

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