Curious Specimens at the V&A

In Museums on February 27, 2010 at 4:34 pm

I’ve just booked to go to a two-day conference at the V&A called Curious Specimens. It looks fantastic but I’m a bit nervous about going on my own, so I hope someone will decide to come with me and hold my hand. Here’s the low down:

It’s linked to their Strawberry Hill exhibition, which I’m desperate to go along and see when it opens on 6 March.

They say: “Focusing on the extraordinary acquisitions of Walpole and the English bluestocking, Mary Delaney, papers will discuss collections, collectors and their circles; objects remarkable for their curious modes of production; crafts of collecting such as Delaney’s ‘paper foliage’ collages and Walpole’s extra-illustrations; what Walpole called ‘the genealogy of objects of virtu’, including the lives of the copy and the fake in Enlightenment collections; intersections and tensions between antiquarian, aesthetic and scientific cultures of collecting and between the collection and the museum. Speakers include Adriano Aymonino, Stephen Bann, Craig Hanson, Janice Neri, Lucy Peltz, Alicia Weisberg Roberts, Stacey Sloboda and Michael Snodin.”

My word, V&A speak is pretty much inpenetrable isn’t it? I think they mean it’s about why 18th-century collecting was so bonkers. Sounds like a laugh to me – cabinets of curiosity and all that.

Thursday 15 April (17.00-18.30) at the Royal College of Surgeons
Friday 16 April (10.30-18.00) at the V&A

It’s only £36 full price, and that includes a wine reception and lunch! What a bargain.

  1. Hello Steve, I have also booked myself in for a two day conference at the V&A, though mine is focusing on Quilts. Have you been to the new Quilts exhibition? It really is amazing. I got a rather good deal, because as I’m student it only costs me £10 for both days, whereas if I had to pay the full fee it would have cost a huge sum of £92. I am very nervous about going by myself, the Lecture Theatre looks very intimidating. Anyway, I do hope you enjoy the conference, and the free lunch! I am somewhat jealous as lunch is not provided for mine, haha. Jazmine.

  2. Hi Jazmine, Thanks for your comment. Well done for getting a good deal on your conference fee. I think it’s great that days like this need not cost the earth! Hope you have a good day there.

    I’ll be sure to check out the Quilts exhibition too. I’m going to the V&A next week to see the Walpole show.


  3. Turns out this was a great day. There were some fab speakers there from around the world – turns out north Americans know a lot about C18th collecting! The lectures were mostly academic papers so it was a bit of a mind leap for me to have to go back into almost student mode and listen intently for 40 minutes again. And then another great speaker and another. Must do it again!

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