Invited guests enjoyed their recent evening viewing of our summer exhibition which has just opened – Embroidered Bodies: Garments, stitches and stories from the Ashmolean. The exhibition will run until 10th September.
The exhibition takes you on a journey through Egypt, the Greek Islands, Saudi Arabia, Central Asia, Pakistan, India and China.
Pieces on display include an eighteenth-century Englishman’s waistcoat through to a Japanese coat from the opening years of the twentieth century.
Aimée Payton, Eastern Art Administrator at the Ashmolean Museum and curator of the exhibition who came to the opening event said: “We have some stunning embroideries in our stores, many of which have never been on display before so I am very excited to share these wonderful pieces with visitors to The Broadway Museum.”
There are hundreds of different ways to make an embroidery stitch. Some techniques, such as chain stitch, are universal and mastered by embroiderers everywhere. Others are often only found in specific countries. The stitches chosen can be our first clue in revealing the story of each garment. Delicate stitches exquisitely depict animals, flowers, people, and patterns that can provide fascinating information about the wearer.
Aimée said that one of her favourite pieces is a Chinese robe, also called an Ao: “ It is decorated all over with quirky cranes which look like they are dancing. This informality is unusual for Ao designs but there are a few similar examples in other museums.”
Embroidered Bodies tells many stories, giving an insight into how these beautifully stitched garments would have been made and worn. Come and discover the threads of the tales within the stitches and unravel the meaning behind the embroidered garments for yourselves!
Aimée will be providing more information on the exhibition at a talk at the museum on 15th June at 7pm. The talk costs £10 including a drink.
For the exhibition normal admission charges apply: Adults £.5.00 (16+) Family £10.00 Children (5-15 years): £2 Under 5s free. For more information on the talk or exhibition telephone 01386 859047 or email: Events@broadwaymuseum.org.uk