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Monday, August 10, 2015

V&A Museum

Maria writes: 

Once again, Rick and I found ourselves wandering the great halls of a delight-filled museum, this time, the Victoria & Albert Museum in the Knightsbridge* section of London. 

We had just enjoyed an amazing few days just outside London, at the wedding celebration of the son of my dear friend, Andrea. This special friend and I have been "pen pals" for over 50 years. (50 years!!!)


My heartfelt thanks to Andrea for always writing back.

Ok, then. Back to The Victoria and Albert Museum.


Rick and I had been there before, but not for the "hunting and gathering of tangles" as we call it. We were there waiting when the doors opened in the morning. . . pretty much alone for about the first hour, wandering these amazing rooms filled to the brim with the most spectacular "stuff" imaginable.

Rick adds:
Even while waiting, we found tangle inspiring details such as in the sign frame and border in the above image, or, in this window treatment:
 


Maria continues:
We began by working together: he, manned with his camera fantastica and I, with my journal and Zentangle tools. We would slowly move from place to place, only to move back again, to retrieve a missed pattern one or the other of us would point out. It was exciting to capture the images in such an inspiring atmosphere. One could only create here.

Rick:
My impressions of the V&A are so different now that I am vibrantly aware of patterns. I felt like I was walking through an entirely new museum! Each glance, each piece, offered a feast of potential and familiar tangles:




 
Maria:
The spirits of artists, both famous and nameless, called to us to capture this one or that, guiding our hands as though they were their own.


We worked until we could not hold our hands up any longer, then ended up having tea and ( the most unbelievable) sultana scones with clotted cream and jam. If I close my eyes, I can still taste them, along with tea, so elegantly served in a proper pot, and proper crockery! Imagine, no plastic spoons or paper cups, or bags of sugar. "I'll have another lump of brown sugar, if you please!" And the café was totally decorated by my "old buddy" William Morris:



Rick:
And always remember to look down . . . here's the floor of that "tea room":



Maria:
For those of you who do not know William Morris, he was a most distinguished designer of patterns from the last half of the 19th century, truly one of my favorite artists.

So there we are, sipping tea, eating scones and taking in the images of a master tangler! Just how cool is that. . . . So, ok, I digress. . . . Rick guided me along as I was totally oblivious to which way was which, I could only see what was in front of me. I drew until I could not. When I could find a bench to sit, I did so only to get a better, steadier line from my pens.


Then off we were, once again. The Egyptian room, Middle Eastern room, Renaissance room . . . it did not seem to matter where we were; it was all spectacular.

Every artist in every culture seemed to draw in patterns. They were everywhere, there just for us to absorb and appreciate. Our angels were right there with us, pointing out things we certainly would have missed – a smidgen of background in an otherwise enormous tapestry, the engravings in suits of armor, fabric-covered furniture, inlaid wood and ivory, frames and mountings, swashes of tassels, tiles, and more tiles.






















Then, of course, back to the William Morris room for more tea, just to make sure we didn't just imagine it the first time.

Here you see snippets of tangles, tangles of snippets . . . begging to be released to passionate tanglers worldwide, for them to use in their daily practice, drawing them into the world they wish to be in . . .

Rick:
When I wasn't photographing potential tangles, I was photographing Maria tangling . . .





Here are some images of the many pages she filled in her current field notes book . . .




. . . and a larger tile she created, many tangles inspired by our trip to the lush V&A.



-----+-----

* Yes, that was our inspiration for the tangle name knightsbridge. On many streets in the Knightsbridge section of London, each townhouse entrance sports this dynamic pattern:


-----+-----

Dear Tanglers, be inspired . . . admire, learn, draw, then admire again. Realize you need only draw a tiny portion of an inspiration, the whole thing. Go deep . . . into a corner or a crease . . . find the core of the pattern . . . can it be tangled? Tangle, then repeat, one stroke at a time. Put it with other inspirations. Maybe at a later time, explore where else you will let it take you.

We will choose at random from the commentators, and send a little something sweet!

If you wish to be considered, please leave a way we can contact you.

Best,

R&M


83 comments:

linesbylynn said...

This blog is so full of inspiration! I am amazed at all the patterns in the pictures (which are fabulous!). You could pull new ideas from these for years!!! Lovely!

Shelly Beauch said...

Sigh...aahhhh! Your hearts must have been skipping with delight!

Donald Wilka said...

Love all the pictures of the different things that you saw. Thoroughly enjoyed looking at the things you deconstructed in your journal. Can understand your mixture of excitement and fatigue.

Natureluvr57 said...

We look at so much passing before our eyes without truly seeing the object(s). If we see and look deeper, we can see what makes up that object. I always loved looking through a microscope to see what makes up the "make up" of the object! This posting is so rich in inspiration. I can look and see beautiful patterns, come back and see things I missed the first time. Awesome! Thanks for sharing

Cat Trask said...

As always, your blog is such an inspiration! All the beautiful pictures, as well as your wonderful commentary. And yes, please consider me. I checked the "Email follow-up comments".. I think that's what you wanted.

Anonymous said...

Omg, such beauty!

Cheryl Cianci :)

Linda Fine said...

Maria and Rick! How amazing the world is when we look at our surroundings with "Zentangle" eyes! Thank you for sharing your adventure with all of us!

Adele Bruno said...

How could you possibly sleep?
What a treasure trove of tangle possibilities. Thank you.

Deborah Lee said...

I would think it would take days, weeks, even years to truly "see" everything in this museum. I would want to move in! How glorious!!

Valerie said...

A great way to slow down! Thanks for an inspiring way to approach a museum.

Lucy said...

It will be fun to see if the next official tangle comes from this trip to the V&A. Thank you for sharing so many inspiring tangle possibilities.

Marilyn McLeod @ Pink Paper Cottage said...

This museum is absolutely stunning and amazing! I never ever imagined all of the zentangle inspiration there is in European architecture! I will look at everything with new eyes.. but of course, in the states, I just don't know if there are museums like this to inspire like you found there. Love your blog.. you are very inspiring to me. pinkpapercottage@yahoo.com

Jeannette Q said...

Maria and Rick:

Since I've begun learning Zentangle, it is like I see the world with entirely new eyes. I see patterns everywhere; I dream of patterns. My husband laughs at how many times a day, "See the Tangle pattern." He hears that phrase 20 times a day. What I loved most in this blog, was to see how "In the beginning....." you still both are about Zentangle. By that I mean, when we first leap into something we love, there is a wonderful period of "in the beginning" when our hearts are filled with all the newness of our love for a subject or an experience. Then, after a few months or years, the newness and passion wears off, and there is just the comfort and richness of a 'known' love....like the feeling of putting on a pair of beloved slippers. But, I can still feel the "in the beginning" love in all that you expressed in this blog. And for that, I thank you very much.....I affirm that I will be the same way ten years from now! Thanks for sharing your journey and your 'love' with all of us. Jeannette Bisbee mrsbissybee@hotmail.com

elianna987 said...

What a magical vacation! I am feeling inspired - thank you for sharing your photos!!

Francie said...

Wow! What beauty...I hope to someday visit the V and A Museum and see it for myself.

Phyllis C said...

I just recently discovered Zentangles, and I LOVE it. I have always done arts and crafts, but this is more relaxing. Your photos, and tangles, from the museum are awesome and inspiring. I "see" more patterns now than before, and I have learned to "stop and see the patterns" in everything. I recently took our niece around San Francisco, and while she was photographing the sights, I was finding tangle ideas in the doorways, architecture and nature. I came home with loads of ideas/photos for my own personal tangles. Thanks for the inspirations and I cannot wait to go to my next museum. .

Anonymous said...

This post has so much to look at, it is impossible to see everything!!! What a TREAT!! Thank you!!!

Vikki said...

Thank you so much for posting this. Most people are looking at patterns everyday without seeing them at all.

In looking at all you discovered in the museum, I'm reminded that every day we lose that much and more to "progress." Thank goodness for museums that preserve some of it.

This is a reminder to always be looking around us, so that through the art of looking for patterns and tangling them, we may preserve some of that which might never find it's way to a museum. May it be discoverable in all of the collective art of Zentangle. Vikki Avara Snider vsnider@gmail.com

NancyP said...

Thank you for sharing such loveliness. Through your examples, I am learning to see my environment differently. NancyP

Chriss said...

Oh be still my beating heart! To go to the V&A museum. What a joy and delight. one day....
cjasper50@gmail.com

Roseanne V. Sabol said...

"If only we have eyes to see...." These photos are so inspiring, so gorgeous. You both make me want to hop on a plane today and get myself to London. Thank you so much for sharing your inspiration with us.

Ginny Stiles said...

I almost SWOONED with the pattern after pattern views from your trip.
Really…it just made me dizzy with delight.

Donna P. said...

Why are modern structures so lacking in this level of detail? What a treasure trove of inspiration you found. Wish I could have been there! Thanks so much for sharing!

Brenda Shaver Shahin said...

Such amazing inspiration and so happy you can share it with us. I often think of all the years before Zentangle that I worked with fabrics but never really "looked" at the patterns. Now I automatically see them everywhere! Such a wonderful experience!

Janet Burditt said...

What a wonderful blog post...so full of awe and wonderment...loved seeing all the inspiring works of art and such inspiration for tangles - those that we know and those yet to come!...what an awesome place to see...

lauryn eldon said...

Rick & Maria,
You endlessly inspire us to find beauty all around us. Thank you for sharing these fascinating photos. Indeed, tangles abound, you just have to slow down and look.

Sherry said...

What a marvelous adventure - I love when you take us along. I'm going to be savoring this blog post for quite a while. The Victoria & Albert Museum is definitely going on my bucket list!

Unknown said...
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Anoeska Waardenburg said...

Thank you for such an inspiring blogpost once again! It almost felt like I was there with you at the museum. All those lovely patterns! What am I still doing online?! I need to go tangle! Bye now!

Holly Moseley said...

Dear Rick and Maria,

Have you attempted to "deconstruct" any Islamic tile patterns? I bought some postcards at a museum in Paris (I think) but have yet to figure out where to start. The patterns are amazingly complicated, it seems....I would love some tips! Also, how do you even begin to choose? So many beautiful patterns.....I see them everywhere too. The older buildings near my son's home in Chicago are yielding many delights these days (besides my granddaughters!).

Sandra Chatelain said...

Loved this post. It is fascinating to see this museum through someone else's eyes. I was recently there and saw some of these but wow, missed a lot. That you for your view of this beautiful museum.

Chrissie Frampton said...

Oh welcome to our side of the pond. How exciting, when I spoke to you (Maria) at CZT 20 I mentioned the box of postcards taken from designs at the V&A which I had left on the show and tell table for people to take. The box had been bought for me by my daughter (she was more than happy for me to share with everyone) so I wished for it to be replaced. She very kindly bought me the book set of designs from the V&A that also have a CD of images for each book. So excited to think about going through the books and enjoying all the images.

Holly Williams said...

Such rich, delicious patterns waiting to be tangled! I so appreciate seeing these inspirational patterns, and having a chance to peek over Maria's shoulder to watch her tangling! Thank you!! <3

Victoria Meblin said...

I loved seeing the photos and reading about your museum visit. Every time I read your blog posts or email newsletters I am inspired, and I plan to use my ever present cell phone camera to capture the beautiful patterns in everyday life. Thank you for the inspiration!

Andrea said...

Wonderful post. It is amazing how patterns seem to come to the forefront everywhere once you've started "tangling".

Kim Winebrenner said...

Thank you for sharing your trip with us; it was inspirational.

Taz42 said...

When we went to London a few years ago, this museum was on our list to visit but we simply ran out of days to fit it in. Now, after getting Chrissie's V&A postcards at CZT20 and reading this inspirational blog post, the V&A is top of the list for our next visit. Thank you Rick and Maria for showing us the extraordinary art that can come from the little things most people (except tanglers of course) never notice.

michele said...

Thank you for such an inspiring post and sharing all of these beautiful photos. I live within blocks of a lovely museum and though I've been there dozens of times, I recently went with a similar purpose. It was like seeing it for the first time.

dennie york czt ix said...

This is wonderful! All the inspiration from the architecture and structures. . . amazing. Your journal is such an inspiration. Glad you had the time to do this for yourselves. Thanks for sharing. . .

Kellie May said...

Thank you, Rick and Maria, for your trip to the museum. I'm new to your fabulous creation Zentangle and I am learning to find a tangle everywhere I look. Your museum adventure has created much inspiration for me. How I wish I could have been there,hearing you express awe at the beauty and seeing you draw in your notebooks! Thanks for your pictures, too, for I will really enjoy the inspiration in drawing my tangles!!

Pat Floerke said...

What a wealth of beauty is going to FLOW from this one blog. I know which pattern I want to try my hand at first, and I can imagine coming back to it many times when I want to explore. My favorites, though, were your tangles, Maria, even more than all that gorgeous art in the museum.

Jane Monk said...

Such a wonderful post of your visit to a special place. Thank you for the photo journey :)

gobarb26 said...

Oh my Gosh, I feel like I was at the museum with you both! What a wonderful photographic journey we went on. I have just returned from a trip to the Carolinas. We were in Charlotte, delivering 2 paintings that my husband had been commissioned to paint. I took a lot of pictures and saw tangles everywhere. I even took a picture of a beautiful, colorful teapot that was in their china cabinet and did a ZIA tile with the bright colors and patterns for my inspiration. If I could figure out how to attach it, I would. We also went to Charleston and I took a bunch more pictures. I photographed plates, walls, chairs, floors, rugs, lace and flowers. I am hoping to deconstruct as many as I can. By the way, we were at the fire museum at the N. Charleston visitor center and I even took picks of some beautiful patterns on an ancient fire truck. What joy! Thanks for sharing your journey.
Barb B, CZT
www.tilestanglesandstrings.blogspot.com

Jeanine H said...

Wow... These images and descriptive words, the tangles at the end, & yes right down to the Tea Room Floor; truly making me feel like I was there, even if just for a moment. Thank you both for sharing so much of your experience, photographs, energy, & time ;) Beginner, Jeanine

Melanye Narcarti said...

Thank you for the many, many images of patterns and drawings!! So much inspiration in my email tonight!! I truly enjoyed it, and will enjoy it many more times.

Melanye Narcarti
lilypie99@yahoo.com

Tmbr said...

Oh My! What a wonderful trip! Thank you so much for sharing all this fantastic inspiration.
tmbr@gmx.com

Heather Jackson said...

Wow, so many wonderful patterns! Thank you for sharing these inspirational images from your trip. I enjoy reading about the "hunting gathering of tangles" and love seeing Maria's beautiful artwork!

m. emu said...

myriads of visual inspirations,
preciously locked in time,
to be wondered, admired and aspired.

thank you for sharing!
~ midori (m.絵夢)

Linda said...

I am so new to this. I bought a notebook and mechanical pencil. Thank goodness I found your blog. I'm overwhelmed but anxious to try some of your examples.

Shoshona said...

sigh - what a treat - thank you for sharing these delights

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing all these great tangles. A very inspiring trip. So many wonderful possibilities everywhere you look. I can't wait to re-visit some of my hometown museums with new tangle searching eyes.

Melissa Cahn
CZT6
mwcahn@ptd.net

Ellen said...

Thank you for sharing you journey. I remember my last visit to the V&A and I have taken many many photos, still to be reviewed and drawn. Thank you for the reminder. I will have a go at them this weekend.
Ellen CZT5 Netherlands

crotnem said...

OMgoodness, how wonderful to see all the different tangles just waiting for you guys, well, now us!!! I saw some awesome things in your pics!
Thanks for always sharing w/us!!

Cheryl

Jane Reiter said...

Fab!!! thanks for sharing!

Lisa F said...

Thank you so much Maria and Rick! I felt like I was there with you! There were SO many amazing patterns that I'm working on some just from your pictures. Thank you for always sharing your thoughts and your art with us.
Lisa Fedele, CZT 18.

MyDorbandt said...

Thank you both so much for sharing your travels. The photography makes me feel like I've actually visited! The patterns and shadows they cast truly amaze me!

Suzanne (wannabe CZT)

JAMIE HERRON said...

Thank you for taking me along on your fabulous journey! You are inspiring me to do a walk around the neighborhood of where I will be teaching, to seek out tangles and for a chance to do some"plein air" tangling with my students!

Jamie Herron, CZT 20

Mickey Baxter-Spade said...

Oh my, I feel like I was there. So many beautiful designs your hearts must be over-flowing. You both are such inspirations. Thank you for taking the time to share your inspiring journey. Your journal would be a wonderful coffee table book.

Mickey Baxter-Spade, CZT 20 (And what a fantastic class it was!)

MartyG said...

Thank you so much for sharing your trip to the V&A with us. I spent a lovely day there last August with my Mom. I was so focused on the needlework that I completely missed the patterns. No worries just a great reason for another visit. I must pull out my pictures to see what patterns I might have inadvertently captured.

1 Art Lady Kate, Tangles and More said...

It was truly wonderful getting to "travel" along with you on this trip. What a wealth of inspiration! Lovely pictures and travel notes. Thank you both for all the possibilities!

Rae Smith said...

Oh what a lovely bunch of photos to pore over again and again, coming up with new patterns to try. Thanks so much for sharing.

Lori said...

Now I don't feel so odd for photographing architectural details, especially when shadows are cast 'just so'. I call it eye candy...you have a veritable candy store there!

Rosie55 said...

Thank you so much for this wonderful post and for reminding me of the glories of the V&A, my absolute favourite museum to browse in. I especially love the Islamic galleries and the amazing carpets which surely William Morris must also have known, some of his designs echo elements of the carpets so closely.
As I get older, I confess I become ever more a 'country mouse' and rarely visit central London these days. Perhaps I should remind myself what a glorious place this is!

Suzanne Fluhr, CZT18 said...

Discovering the Zentangle method has increased my appreciation of my travels where I now see patterns everywhere. As you said, patterns have been a cornerstone of human expression in every time and every culture. Our trip to Turkey this year was eye popping since Islamic art doesn't permit representation of the human form.

Anonymous said...

The beauty of the patterns in these photos is intense. Thank the description of the Victoria & Albert Museum and the wonderful story of your trip there. Jackie CZT XIII

Anonymous said...

I loved coming along with you on your journey to the V & A. The next time I am "over home" I will be making a visit there with my camera along. Your pictures are a wonderful inspiration. Thank you for sharing them with us.
Marg Jones, Canada
William.jones@bellaliant.net

Cherie Hartwick said...

I visited London and Paris quite a few years ago. Oh, how I wish I could go back and see the sites as you did, through Zentangle eyes. But even local sites have taken on new meaning. On our way to attend CZT#20, my daughter, Heather, and I documented patterns in our surroundings, such as upholstery, wallpaper, carpets and more.
Thank you so much for sharing, your trip and Zentangle.
Cherie
CZT#20

Terri Young said...

What is that saying about living vicariously thru others...that is how much I enjoy reading about y'all's travels in the world. There is so much inspiration if one just opens their eyes and sees what is before them. I am finding more and more all around me, even at during a short trip to the store. Thank you both for teaching is about Zentangle and the world we live in.

Wendy said...

What a wonderful gift you give us, and keep on giving to all. Thank you!

Rebecca said...

Your passion and joy for art, pattern, form, and life is overflowing in this post. Thank you so much for sharing your inspiration with all of us!

ScaryCheri02@yahoo.com said...

What a fabulous post. Thank you for sharing all the wonderful pictures. So inspiring. I tangle my birthday card envelopes to my friends and relatives. They all let me know they love their special gifts. I recently visited my grandchildren at school. When I walked in there were hands on the wall decorated with tangles. I went to the teachers class and asked her about them. She was just teaching her class about patterns. I gave her the address to your website and visited with her for awhile. Tangles sure bring people together, don't they?

Jean VanSullen said...

Love receiving your newsletter every month. Love Zentangling. I even do it in my mind at night when I can't sleep. I draw a square and a string. As I start tangle patterns, I fall asleep. They never do get finished. Puts me to sleep right away. Love doing squares. Just thinking about what patterns to use starts the relaxing. Thank you for bringing Zentangle to everyone everywhere. I hope you realize how many people you have touched in the whole wide world.

Carmen said...

This is what I call "Mindful Site Seeing!"
Thank you for sharing your rich experiences.
God Bless!

Carmen

Kathleen said...

Absolutely Fabulous! Thank you so much for posting so many beautiful images from your V and A visit!! Wow! I am so inspired! I haven't made time for over a year to visit the Blog, and imagine my sheer DELIGHT in having chosen TODAY, to get re-inspired by Zentangle. Reading this blog post was like opening a Treasure chest of joy, opportunity, and inspiration. Thank you so much for your open hearts, which are so evident here. I am deeply grateful. My mother passed last year; reading this post felt like an invitation to experience the joy all around me once again.
Gratefully,
Kathleen

Alison Couchman said...

We are so lucky here in the UK to have the V&A and many other fabulous museums, and not just in London. I love to see other people's sketchbooks and to see yours, Maria, is just fab! Little snippets of patterns that build into such richness.
I live about 100 miles from London and rarely have the chance to get down there so seeing Ricks photos reminds me why I must try to make the effort to get along to any museum when I can.
I hope it doesn't embarass you, but not only does the blog post show your love of Zentangle but also Rick's love for Maria. It's very touching to see those photos of Maria working away, oblivious to the fact that she is being photographed. The delight both of you have for travel and all things new shines out bright and true.

Lizzie Mayne said...

If only you could have have held a CZT course here in the UK that would have been great.

Tina in NJ said...

All those wonderful patterns! You could do an entire book on them!
Schmidttr@verizon.net

Carol Hobday said...

Thank you for sharing all the great patterns you found and for teaching us to see them too! I love Zentangle!

Gloria Lenzen said...

What a beautiful blog post. I'm truly inspired by all the glorious, beautiful photographs you have shared. They are priceless. Through your post and photos, I could feel myself sitting on a bench viewing the wonder of it all just like you were Maria. How we take our surroundings for granted, and we Miss Out on so many wonderous and beautiful things others have created and provided for our eyes to see while we feel our hearts being touched. Thank You for capturing all this beauty and sharing with us. Maria, I believe if you held and auction for your Field Book, you would receive a very hefty price for it. Who wouldn't want a journal of your many drawings. WOW,

Shirleen said...

I have the black tiles and mandalas and have always been disappointed with my results, but after this I am going to get them out and try again using your great ideas. Thank you.

Maxine said...

Hi Rick and Maria, Thank you for posting Molly's black tile I immediately wanted a black tile and white pen to play with. I love how the grey pen adds shade and how Molly blackened over some of the pattern. very unique look. I have a lot of jelly roll pens and find the silver very addicting as well. Using colors seem to work best by trying to lay down lines in opposite colors, like green and then red. Or blue and yellow. Thank you for all the pictures you post as well. You two are amazing. It is my hope to one day be able to come to training.

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Ester Massuger said...

Great! I'd love to visit a museum and try to do this myself.