Friday, 29 April 2016
One image I didn’t give you from our England visit is of a thatched-roofed building. This one is neither a remarkable structure nor unusual thatch. Seems like many of the still-thatched buildings are right next to the road, suggesting they are old country routes…. Quite a chimney on this one, no? Note, too, the use of dense hedges as visual barriers….
This is not church-glass, but ca. 1864 by a Neo-Gothic arts-and-crafts artist, a small piece we saw at the Musée National du Moyen Âge, titled “Chaucer asleep.” The designer was Sir Edward Coley Burne-Jones, and it was made by William Morris‘s decorative arts guild, which had six partners including Burne-Jones (photo of both men in 1874 here). They founded the group in 1861, and this piece was made just before their firm garnered a lot of business. In the 1850s, Burne-Jones was enamored of Canterbury Tales, so his choice of Chaucer before his design was in service of clients makes sense.
What I especially liked is all the plant-detail—in the meadow with the sleeping figure, against the fence, and glimpsed through openings in the wall. I like the angel holding the solar timepiece, left, and the poppies(?) by the fence. Interesting that the cloak is green, but not the plants…. I also like that his foot pokes gently out of what is otherwise the boundary of the rectangular piece, and into the framing area. BTW, the words are “Imago Chaucer Poetae.”