Our 2016-2017 Discovery Days


The evolution of English Porcelain from 1770 to 1900

Diana Lloyd

Time: Special Interest Day: 10.00 a.m. - 15.30 p.m.


This day followed the evolution of English porcelain from the early days of the Plymouth, Bristol, New Hall and many other factories up to the start of the twentieth century.

The third of the three session day will be an opportunity for members to bring their own articles of English porcelain from this period for a discussion and assessment - rather like an 'Antiques Roadshow' session.

There was coffee on arrival and a good two course lunch.

The venue of Buckfast Abbey conference centre is well known and popular with members.

Session 1 - The Development of Hard Paste Porcelain and the Bone China of Spode

The discovery of China Clay and China Stone (Kaolin and Petunste) at Tregonnin, near Helston in 1758, and William Cookworthy's account of the method of making hard-paste porcelain and his successful establishment of the Plymouth Factory by 1768. The Soft Paste Porcelain of Chelsea, Bow, Longton Hall, Derby and Worcester of the mid 18th Century. Cookworthy's decision after two years to move the factory to Bristol where it would be easier to find potters - delftware having being an important product of the city. The involvement of Richard Champion, the problem with the patent, and the move to Shelton Hall, known as New Hall. The use of blue for decoration at the three factories, contrasted with the blue of Worcester and Derby at the same period on Soft Paste Porcelain. The figures produced at Plymouth and Bristol - inspired by the greatest porcelain figure maker - Kandler of Meissen. The use of Neo-classical decoration on the dinner services, and the fashion of topographical views on English Porcelain in the late 18th century. The continued fascination of "oriental decoration" at all the late 18th century factories and the possibility of Chinese decorators at New Hall. The development of Bone China by Josiah Spode at the end of the 18th century.

Session 2 - 19th Century Bone China

The Regency style of the first quarter of the 19th century, with its emphasis on classicism and 'stripped' ornament as well as the rich 'imari' colours and designs favoured by Derby, Worcester, Spode and Minton. The Rococo Revival, beginning in the 1830s with rich ground colours and gilding and the ornamental vases for the Drawing Room, a result of the fashion for large mirrors above the mantelpiece. The Gold Medals at the 1851 Exhibition for Old Chelsea, Old Sevres and Old Meissen, achieved by Coalport and Minton. The development of new techniques such as pate sur pate, from the late 1860s at Minton and the growing influence of Japanese aesthetics in the last quarter of the 19th century, and the emergence of Art Nouveau completes, the survey.

Session 3

Diana will look at the various pieces brought by the members which will invariably pick up on the images and information that have covered been in the morning.

Venue: Buckfast Abbey Conference Centre, Buckfast, Devon, TQ11 0EE

Organised by: SW Area

Cost: £36 to include coffee on arrival, departure and a two course lunch.


Music Inspired by Paintings & Paintings Inspired by Music

Peter Medhurst

Time: Special Interest Day: 10.30 a.m. - 15.30 p.m.


Fully Booked

It has long been acknowledged that the worlds of the visual and aural arts link with extraordinary power when one medium inspires the other. This study day, which spans over 600 years of the arts, analysed and discussed a range of related works, bringing together the music of Martinů with the frescoes of Piero della Francesca, Botticelli’s Birth of Venus with Respighi’s Trittico botticelliano, Böcklin’s Isle of the Dead with Rachmaninoff’s symphonic poem, and Piet Mondrian’s Broadway Boogie Woogie with the piano playing of Albert Ammons.

The study day was presented with digital images, video, recorded music and live examples sung and played at the piano.

Session 1

After a brief introduction to the subject of ‘music inspired by paintings’, three paintings were discussed that have produced direct musical responses in famous composers.

Session 2

The theme of music drawing inspiration from identifiable paintings continues. Half way through this second session, the theme was reversed and before the lunch break, the subject of ‘paintings inspired by music’ was introduced. Peter Medhurst played John Field’s Nocturne No 5 and Chopin’s Nocturne in Em Op 72 No 1 on the piano and discussed the use of the word ‘nocturne’ in the works of James Whistler.

Session 3

The last session of the day explored the wealth of 19th and 20th century paintings that connect with specific musical works and musical genres.

For a full description , please go to the Peter Medhurst web site web site

Venue: Lecture Theatre, National Maritime Museum Cornwall, Falmouth

Organised by: Falmouth DFAS

Cost: £32 To include lectures, mid-morning coffee and buffet lunch


The Story of Art – In the Footsteps of Gombrich Part 4 ~ The Age of Reason – A Story Without End ~ The late 18th to the mid-20th centuries

Dr Geri Parlby and Jeni Andrews-Fraser, MA

Time: Study day: 11.00 a.m. - 15.30 p.m.


This course followed and built on the chapters of E.H. Gombrich’s The Story of Art. It is devised and presented by The Arts Society lecturers Dr Geri Parlby and Jeni Fraser, both art historians and seasoned educators. It provided a chronological survey of the history of art as well as an examination of the religious, ritual, social and political life in which art was created.

Following on from the success of the courses run in October 2013, 2014, and 2015, this was the fourth in the series.

Parts can be taken independently of each other.

Part 4: The Age of Reason – A Story without end
The late 18th to the mid-20th centuries

Session One: The Break in Tradition – England and France, late eighteenth and nineteenth centuries

Session Two: Permanent Revolution – The nineteenth century evolves

Session Three: In Search of New Standards – The late nineteenth century

Session Four: Experimental Art – The first half of the twentieth century

Session Five: A story without end – The triumph of Modernism: Another turning of the tide; The changing past

Prior Parts in the Series

Part 1: Covered Pre-history to the 11th century, including primitive, Egyptian, Mesopotamian, Greek and Roman art, through the Byzantine period to the Gothic.

Part 2: Considered the period from the 14th to the late 16th centuries, starting with Giotto and the early Renaissance and continuing up to the time of the Catholic Counter-Reformation.

Part 3: Looked at the art and architecture produced in the Baroque period and that of the ‘Enlightenment’ (late 16th and 18th centuries).

Venue: County Arms, Truro

Organised by: South West Area

Cost: 5 sessions, £130 to include refreshments; sandwich lunches can be ordered on the day (the venue does not permit you to bring your own food on to the premises)


Art and Architecture of Berlin and Dresden

Eveline Eaton

Time: Study day: 10.00 a.m. for 10.30 a.m., finish at around 3.15 p.m.


For centuries Berlin and Dresden have been the cultural heart of what is now modern Germany. Generations of artists, architects and art lovers had developed inspirational collections. The upheavals of the mid twentieth century and the immense destruction of both cities in the last war have rebounded with great restorations of the art and architecture.

Come and study what was lost in the past and what has come in the present. Our lecturer, Eveline Eaton, was born in Berlin and is now the Chairman of the Dresden Restoration Trust, with an intimate knowledge of the art and wonderful architecture of both cities.

Venue: The Best Western Tiverton Hotel, Blundells Road, Tiverton

Organised by: South West Area

Cost: £36.00 to include coffee and a good two course lunch