I’ve been the Gallery marketing and communications intern for the past 6 months, and what a six months it’s been!
With a background in History of Art, The Courtauld was the dream location to delve into the world of arts marketing and comms.
Walking through the Gallery before opening (having restocked the all-important leaflet holder) and enjoying a room full of Cézanne’s on the way to the office never gets old. The Courtauld really does have a stunning collection of paintings on the walls, and a great selection of rotating displays in the new Drawings Gallery. There is always something new to discover and I still haven’t settled on a favourite work!
The location isn’t bad either. Situated in the North Block of Somerset House the Gallery finds itself surrounded by a thriving community of arts and cultural organisations as well as bars, brasseries and coffee shops. And fountains! I have loved sitting outside over lunch watching people race each other through the jets or pose in front of them for instagram-worthy shots and then get unintentionally soaked.
Back to the job – The role allows, and encourages, you to get involved in all aspects of marketing and communications within The Courtauld. From social media promotions, monthly e-newsletters and visitor research to feeding-back on poster designs, collating press packs and press coverage the department is a lively one with lots to get excited about.
Highlights for me include:
Assisting at the press call when the plaster cupid, brought from Cézanne’s studio in the south of France, was re-united with its ‘portrait’.
Photographing and working on the Illuminating Objects series – seeing Elly’s aventurine bowl project through from inception to display. Trips to the stores and conservation studios are always fascinating and remind you that there is always more to learn about the collection.
The Gallery team. There are lots of friendly faces in the building which forms a great collaborative atmosphere. Everyone has been hugely welcoming and supportive and I’m very grateful for all that I’ve learnt.
In the last 6 months I have seen the extraordinary exhibition Goya: The Witches and Old Women Album open to excellent reviews and the Goya Late events attract record numbers. Unfinished…Works from The Courtauld Gallery seemed a long way off in February but time sped along and now it’s only next month that the Bridget Riley: Learning from Seurat display is installed, followed by Soaring Flight: Peter Lanyon’s Gliding Paintings!
I couldn’t have asked for a better introduction into the world of arts marketing and communications. I’ve learnt so much from the whole team, and in particular from Emily Butcher my manager – thank you. I have been lucky enough to secure a full-time job within marketing and communications, no doubt in part due to my time at The Courtauld.
I look forward to returning to the Gallery to see the displays and projects that I have been working on come to fruition. Until then, nothing beats seeing reviews of the shows you’ve been involved with or your leaflets or posters out on display!
Collection, Displays, Goya: The Witches and Old Women Album | Tags: Bridget Riley, cezanne, communications, Gallery, goya, Illuminating Objects, intern, marketing, Peter Lanyon, Unfinished | Leave a comment
As our 20th century British rooms are re-hung and Life in Squares hits our screens the Bloomsbury Group seems to be on everyone’s lips!
Visit the Gallery to see Vanessa Bell’s A Conversation with its original frame, painted by the artist alongside works by Duncan Grant, Roger Fry and others.
Established in 1913 by Roger Fry, the Omega Workshops were an experimental design collective.
Well ahead of their time, the Omega Workshops brought the experimental language of avant-garde art to domestic design in Edwardian Britain. They were a laboratory of design ideas, creating a range of objects for the home, from rugs and linens to ceramics, furniture and clothing – all boldly coloured with dynamic abstract patterns. No artist was allowed to sign their work, and everything produced by the Workshops bore only the Greek letter Ω (Omega).
Inspired by their works our Gallery shop has developed a beautiful range of gifts both in-store and online.
From jewellery to scarves, prints to rugs and even award-winning wallpaper you can enjoy the striking bold prints of the Omega Workshops wherever you are.
Visit our shop at:
Or shop online: courtauldshop.com
We have a copy of The Bloomsbury Cookbook: Recipes for Life, Love and Art to give away, with two complimentary tickets to the Gallery.
This beautiful volume published by Thames and Hudson is packed full of illustrations, quotations and nearly 300 recipes.
In July 1913 the Omega Workshops opened to the public. To win, tell us –
What was the London address of the Omega Workshops?
Email your answer, full name and postal address to firstname.lastname@example.org to enter!
Competition closes Thursday 20 August 2015, 10am.Collection, Displays, Shop | Tags: Bloomsbury, competition, Cookbook, Duncan Grant, Omega Workshops, Roger Fry, Vanessa Bell | 1 comment
The Courtauld’s newest instalment is finally ready and has now been sitting proudly on display for over a week. The Venetian bowl (I have become accustomed to calling it ‘my’ bowl) is small but a lot of time, consideration and work from many people has gone into its display. From Sacha Gerstein’s curatorial eye to Graeme Barraclough’s experience as a conservator, Colin Lindley’s mount-making efforts and many more, the one tiny bowl had a lot of fantastic people working hard behind it, including my own research!
I arrived bright and early on a beautiful sunny day at The Courtauld on the day of the installation. Due to works being carried out on the galleries lifts, the glass case had to be physically carried up the flight of stairs to its new home. However, this was luckily the last hurdle the project had to make before being completed.
After some adjustments to the mount, and the application of new lettering and positioning of text labels, it was time for the bowl to be installed. The chalcedony glass that makes up the bowl has a fascinating quality of glowing bright red when a bright light is shone directly at it. Because of this, we wanted to get the lights in the case at just the right angle to produce some of this for visitors to see.
Another difficulty was how to angle the bowl. The inside of the bowl has a milky pale green colour, nowhere near as beautiful as the swirling patterns on the outside, which is much more interesting to look at, and relevant to the bowl’s history. This faced us with a small problem, because short of displaying the bowl upside down (in which case it would cease to look much like a bowl), one side of the cabinet was going to have a view of the inside of the bowl.
In a last-minute change (quite literally, just minutes before the glass hood was secured into place!) we decided to try turning the bowl round by 90 degrees. It sounds silly, but having the bowl side-on wasn’t something that had occurred to us! This way, both ‘viewing’ sides of the case, where the text panels are, get a brilliant view of the bowl’s exterior.
And with that, we ushered ourselves out of the gallery as the first members of the public arrived for the day.
The whole process of completing the Illuminating Objects internship has been eye-opening to a whole world I had never truly contemplated before. It has been hard work, but also fascinating, and immensely rewarding.
Thank you to everyone at The Courtauld (and beyond) who has given their time and assistance to this project. Special thanks to Sacha Gerstein for her guidance and expertise, and for giving me the opportunity to take part.Categories: Displays, Illuminating Objects | Tags: aventurine, bowl, copper, glass, Illuminating Objects, installation | Leave a comment