Whitby Museum

Working on Thackray Uncovered has made me reflect on my love of museums and why I respond to archives and create my own collections of objects. A place that has played a big part in my story is Whitby Museum which houses collections including the natural world, shipping and textiles. Nestled in the beautiful Pannett Park the museum is a must for anyone visiting Whitby for a day trip or a holiday.

Part of the Fossil Collection at Whitby Museum
Part of the Fossil Collection at Whitby Museum

My childhood holidays were spent in Whitby and as an adult I visit on a monthly basis to take time out from the studio and explore the beaches collecting objects for projects like Time & Tide. I always find something to inspire in the museum and each time I visit I see something new.

Narwal Skeleton at Whitby Museum
Narwhal Skeleton at Whitby Museum

In 2016 I contacted the curator to explore the possibility of working with the museum, responding to their collection and exhibiting the finished works in the museum’s temporary exhibition space. Last week I travelled to Whitby to meet with Alison and discuss my ideas in more detail.

I took along samples of my work so that Alison could get an idea of the work I produce, I love the images of my work but textiles are such an emotive medium that looking and handling them is a must.

The meeting was also a chance for me to look around the museum and visit some of my favourite objects from the collection.

Wax Faced Doll at Whitby Museum
Wax Faced Doll at Whitby Museum

Alison loved my initial ideas, creating work responding to the collection, offering a couple of workshops to draw visitors to the museum and working as artist in residence for a few weeks in 2018. I will hear back in a few weeks whether the museum trustee’s are happy with the plans so I’m stitching with my fingers crossed in the studio until I hear back!

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