Perpetuating the memory of one of the greatest men of the Victorian age

‘Coffee with a Curator’ talk now available online

Oxford Union

Posted on January 21, 2021

If you missed our first ‘Coffee with a Curator’ event on Tuesday 19 January, you can catch the recording of the talk here. This talk explores William Morris’s ‘new and lighter design’ for the Oxford Union Ceiling.

Morris made his debut as a painter during the ‘jovial campaign’ of 1857 to help decorate the walls of the Oxford Union debating hall. However, three stunning watercolours in the Society’s collection for the re-decoration of the ceiling shed light on this lesser-known aspect of the now infamous scheme. We will hear of the artists and their paintings illustrating scenes from Arthurian legend and look at contemporary descriptions of the original ceiling before focusing on the Society’s designs for the ceiling re-decoration; beautiful repeat patterns which have been praised as ‘a tribute to the genius of Morris’.

Check back on the website soon to book on to next month’s Coffee with a Curator and explore some more fascinating objects from our collection.