The Peter Floud Prize

We are delighted to announce the latest recipients of the Peter Floud Prize:

  • Stephen Williams receives £300 for his proposed research on Robert Banner (1855-1910), a member of the Social-Democratic Federation executive and amongst those who left with Morris to form the Socialist League.
  • £100 to Natalia Martynenko-Hunt who is writing a thesis on J. H. Dearle and the Arts & Crafts Movement for the National Academy of Arts and Architecture of Ukraine.
  • £100 to Andrew J. Wood at the University of California, Santa Cruz who is writing a thesis on aesthetic experience as a politically mobilizing force, focusing on William Morris and on a 20th-century punk rock band.

Congratulations to all the winners!

Successful Heritage Lottery Fund Bid

We are delighted to announce that our partnership project with the Emery Walker Trust, Arts and Crafts Hammersmith, has secured £631,100 from Heritage Lottery Fund. The project will start in spring 2015 and includes improvements to our buildings, conservation, educational and participation activities. Fundraising for the final £150,000 continues and more news is to come in the new year. The media release can be downloaded here.

WMS Spring Exhibition: The Art of Philip Webb

21st March – 30th June 2015

 ‘Few ever heard of him just because he was so great a man’ - W. R. Lethaby, 1935

Philip Webb (1831-1915) was one of the great architects of the nineteenth century.  Although he avoided publicity, his influence was acknowledged during his own lifetime and he has since been called the Father of Arts and Crafts Architecture.  Webb’s approach to design continues to inspire architects, illustrating how his philosophy is still relevant today.  Webb was particularly concerned with honesty and practicality in design, together with the inclusion of regional architectural traditions and locally-sourced materials.  His followers included W.R. Lethaby, Mackay Hugh Baillie Scott, Ernest Gimson and Edward Lutyens.

Webb’s life-long friendship with Morris began in the office of G.E. Street, where both trained as architects.  However, Morris abandoned a career in architecture after a year in favour of becoming a painter and later, a designer.  Through Morris, Webb met Burne-Jones and Charles Faulkner; all four were to become members of the firm of Morris, Marshall, Faulkner & Company.

This centenary display highlights Webb’s collaboration with Morris, focusing on the lesser-known artwork that so clearly demonstrates the talent and skill that continues to inspire to this day.

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2015 – Our Diamond Jubilee Year

Unless otherwise stated:

• Events are at Kelmscott House starting 2.15 pm.
• Tickets: members, £6; non-members, £8; students £4
Applications for tickets should be sent to the WMS office – address at the bottom of this page. Stamped addressed envelopes should accompany all postal bookings.

The pre-booking of tickets for all events is strongly advised. Our historic Coach House lecture room has limited seating capacity and if you attend without booking beforehand you risk being turned away.

Saturday, 21st March at 2.30pm (N.B. 15-minute later start time than most events)

Utopian Dreams and the Nature of Work: Ruskin, Morris and the Guild of St George
Mark Frost

Following the recent publication of a monograph on the Guild of St George, this talk will consider the roots, work, and consequences of Ruskin’s Utopian (mis) adventures; compare Ruskin’s curious mixture of authoritarian and radical politics to Morris’s Ruskinian socialism; and compare the two men’s approaches to labour and crafts. Mark Frost is Senior Lecturer in English Literature at the University of Portsmouth. Having published widely on Ruskin he remains affiliated, but is also pursuing interests in the environment and the pastoral in

Dickens, Jefferies, Morris, Orwell and others. The talk will be followed by our celebration of William Morris’s birthday with cake and wine.

Saturday, 18th April at 2.15pm
William Morris and his Workers at Merton
David Saxby
This talk will explore William Morris’s works at Merton Abbey from 1881 to 1940. It will examine the layout of the works and what was made there and will bring together the lives of those who worked for Morris & Co. including the young carpet weaving girls, tapestry boys and former Spitalfields weavers. Archaeologist David Saxby excavated Morris’s works in 1992. He is the author of William Morris at Merton which he is currently rewriting to include new research.

Saturday, 16th May at 2.15pm
Annual General Meeting
This year our AGM will take place at the Society
premises at Kelmscott House, Hammersmith.
Talk following meeting– speaker tbc.

Saturday, 6th June at 2.15pm
Of Marxes and Morrises
Rachel Holmes
William Morris started reading Karl Marx when the economist’s firebrand daughter Eleanor was in her 20s; by her 30s William & Eleanor worked together at the forefront of radical British politics and May Morris had become Eleanor’s close personal friend. Rachel Holmes
tells the story of how their passions influenced modern British life.
Holmes is the author of Eleanor Marx: A Life. Her other books include biographies about Dr James Barry and Saartjie Baartman, ‘The Hottentot Venus.’

Saturday, 13th June 2pm till 5pm
Garden Party
Joy and Jock Birney (who live in the main part of Kelmscott House) are once again generously opening their garden and house to members and their guests for the afternoon. Tours of the main house for small groups will be available. Refreshments will be served.
£7 members, £9 non-members.
Sunday, 14th June 11am till 5pm
Open Gardens
We will be participating in the Open Gardens weekend
by inviting visitors to view the gardens at Kelmscott
House as well to look around as the WMS Museum.

 

Please note:
• Your participation at any event is at your own risk. The Society cannot accept any liability for injury, loss, or damage.
• Direct level access is available to the Coach House where talks take place. The rest of our
premises have limited wheelchair access.
• The Society reserves the right to cancel, alter, or postpone any events, as it may consider expedient or necessary.
• Refunds will only be offered if a cancellation or postponement is made by the Society.