V & A's Museum of Childhood, London
Friday, January 6, 2012 at 09:25AM
Joyatri in London, Museum of Childhood, elf, fairy, fantasy

I went to the Museum of Childhood because they were having several exhibitions with dark, fantastical themes. Some highlights:

Etchings from Jake and Dinos Chapman's My Big Colouring Book series that are not as freaky as their fiberglass sculpture, but still pretty creepy.

An installation called Stuff of Nightmares in which schoolchildren and artists collaborated on a forest popluated with, well, the stuff of nightmares.

I wouldn't want to stumble upon these cutesy animals with ghoul eyes in the forest.


The Magic Worlds exhibition had sections on “Fantasy,””Illusion,” and “Enchantment” full of fairy tales, fairies, elves, and mythical creatures, and included works by some of my favorite illustrators.

Elder Mother Tree from Hans Christian Anderson's Fairy Tales, by Arthur Rackham, 1932. She found herself face to face with a stately lady, watercolor illustration by Edmund Dulac for Beauty and the Beast, 1910.

A Rehearsal in Fairyland, Richard Doyle, 1870.

Cottingley Fairies with Elsie Wright taken by Frances Griffiths, 1920.

I love how so many were duped into believing that this series of fairy photos were real.

Ceramic tiles - Flora's Train, designed by Walter Crane, Pilkington Tile and Pottery Company, 1900-01.

The Elf, printed cloth pattern for a soft toy. Made in England by Dean's Rag Book Co. Ltd, 1909.

The exhibit also included some illustrations by Wayne Anderson, whose work I was unfamiliar with. I like it so much, it deserves a seperate post!

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