V&A image collection online.

For anyone who had visited the UK the Victorian and Albert Museum is a must for their textile collection is amazing. The V&A image collection houses over 20,000 images of objects, including ceramics, fashion, glass, and textiles. I typed in ‘sampler’ and I was done for as 106 results came up. Many of my favourite samplers are in this collection as I am fortunate enough to have lived in London for a year. I went to the V&A every week sat and drew these pieces in the process fell in love with them. So for me it was seeing old friends.

This map sampler [Museum no 497-1905] caught my eye as I have been thinking about maps and stitching lately.

One of the things I have been thinking about and looking at how space is often used on samplers there is no gaps no rest for the eye so they build up this texture of patterning. Now this was partly to do with economy but it produced a particular aesthetic. Have a look at this Moroccan sampler [Museum no T.35-1933] to see what I mean. At art school I was taught to give plenty of room to elements in a design, white space was god but I really love this crowded look. I am thinking about how space is conceptualised online, since an email whips around the globe in a moment there is none and my net life is certainly crowded with people.

This crowding of elements seems to fit on some intuitive level perhaps I can use it to act as a metaphor for the net. It would be good as it also references the past.

As I said I am just thinking outloud at the moment.

The V&A site is great visual sustenance and has set me up for the day!

Textile Culture of India

The Textile Culture of India houses information and images of textiles and the people who make them. You can navigate by geographical regions. I found the site easy to find my way around as each section housing a map that indicates the content on the site that is related to that geographical region. There is also an alphabetical subject index to the site. This means if you are interested in just embroidery, applique, weave or surface techniques you can explore those.

I particularly liked the fact that these textiles were set in cultural context with image of house interiors and cultural events such as weddings.