All-Round Fabulousness

30/09/2010

I have long been a fan of Barry Humphries and last week had the great pleasure of attending a lecture he gave at the V&A to publicise his new book Handling Edna. The V&A Lecture Theatre is noteworthy for its relatively small size and intimate cosy ambience, so those seeking an audience with the great and good of the fashion, design, art and theatrical worlds need only buy a ticket to feel themselves very much in the company of the subject of their admiration. This was the case with Mr Humphries who engaged his capacity audience with great warmth and humour as though he were sharing confidences with friends.  His wit and wisdom was shared generously, with great style. Mr H. is now number one on my fantasy dinner party list, although it has pained me to move HM The Queen down a space.

The following evening the British Museum hosted drinks in the Egyptian Sculpture Gallery to honour the commencement of works on their fantastic new World Exhibition & Conservation Centre. This is going to be built next door to the museum, utilising space taken up by existing (and completely outdated) storage and office space and will create a world-class facility to conserve, study and display objects. I was massively excited when I heard about this fabulous addition to the museum’s facilities that will really position the BM at the forefront of international conservation and museum science. Before then however we have their new upcoming exhibition to look forward to – Journey Through the Afterlife; The Ancient Egyptian Book of the Dead. In their own words –

“The ‘Book’, used for over 1500 years between c. 1600 BC and 100 AD, is not a single text, but a compilation of spells thought to equip the dead with knowledge and power which would guide them safely through the dangers of the hereafter and ultimately ensure eternal life.”

There is also another pressing reason to visit the V&A – Diaghilev & The Golden Age of the Ballets Russes 1909 – 1929 opened on 25th September and runs t0 9th January 2011 and I can’t wait to see it. As if further incentive to stop by were needed,  Imperial Chinese Robes from the Forbidden City opens 7 December 2010 in the Fashion Room (40) and runs to 27 February 2011.

Dark mornings, early nights and a chill in the wind mean winter gloom but if the state of the culture is anything to go by we have a fabulous season of beauty and enrichment ahead.

V&A Museum
http://www.vam.ac.uk

British Museum
http://www.britishmuseum.org


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