Monday, July 16, 2007

Museum and Mews

Wow, I am actually writing about a current day. This is weird. Now all I have to do is start the blog I am supposed to be doing for class and I will be all set.

This morning, we met at 9 to take the tube to the Museum of London. There we listened to a very interesting speaker who is in charge of the pre-history area of the museum. He told us that the Museum of London is the largest urban museum in the world. He also talked a lot about the set-up and design process about the new (2002) pre-history exhibit, London before London.

I found that part of the talk fascinating. I knew a lot of work was involved but never knew how much. He said that they had a group come in who normally designs for shops, not museums, to get a fresh outlook on things. They considered traffic flow. Apparently in England, people tend to go to the left and the museum had to do things to draw people right. We decided that Americans tend to go to the right. It must have something to do with the driving/ side of the road thing. They also had to consider the appearance of the exhibit and make it a "design classic" so it wouldn't look dated in a couple of years. How do you think they did?

That blue wall with the spear points and other things hanging in it is supposed to mimic the Thames. It was very important to the pre-historic people and still is to people today. They define themselves as "North Londoners" or "South Londoners" depending on where they live in relation to the river.

I really liked the design of the space. They did a very good job in making everything look fresh and interesting. His talk also got me thinking about the design of the rest of the museum and how they designed everything else. What draws people in, how they are subconsciously directed to the next important thing, how important lighting and color are, etc. etc. Like look at this color.

Red is the perfect wall color for an exhibit about fire and London burning down. It is definitely going to make me look at things differently now.

I found some more knitting and, look, it is a sock! This is from 1540-60 roughly and is the only known example of its kind in England. The pair was probably imported from Italy or Spain and is made of very expensive silk. I just had to take a picture.

After wandering through the rest of the museum, I decided to go to the Queen's Mews. Mews is a word for stables. It comes from a latin word but I didn't catch the latin meaning. I got there at 3.15, just as the doors close for the last people to be let in. The Mews close at 4 so they give people 45 minutes to go through. I didn't get to see many horses because it was late in the day but I was able to see a pair of Cleveland Bays and a pair of greys (both fleabit).

He had such personality, doesn't he?

Horsie butt!

I was going to go to the Horse Guards Museum too but didn't want to pay full price for both. At least with the International Student ID I will get a couple of £s off. I might go there tomorrow.

Tonight is nothing really special. Some other people went to go see Wicked but I didn't feel like paying that much for a story that I wasn't too thrilled about. I might try to see the Mary Poppins play. Anyway, I'm just sitting here trying to get all of my pictures up, this blog current, and doing the reflective journal blog for class. That one requires me to have the notes I took at the various places. Usually I forget my notebook in my room whenever I come to the computer lab but not tonight! Now, off to go do that one. It won't have fun pictures of horsie butts.

1 comment:

Lisa L said...

Hi Anne,

Just a note to say I've been enjoying your posts - all the great pictures of London - I've always wanted to visit! It was fun to see a picure of Loop - it looks so tiny!