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Cirencester Deer Park School

Cirencester Deer Park School

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GCSE Textiles Trip

Visit to the American Museum, Bath on 13 September 2017.

On what was initially a very wet Wednesday, 26 GCSE Textile Art pupils and 3 staff from Cirencester Deer Park School visited the American Museum in Bath, the only museum of American decorative and folk art outside the United States, to see several different exhibitions.

As we arrived, the sun appeared and, after being enthralled by lots of fabulous art and design, we were able to spend time outside, enjoying the spectacular views and lovely gardens, accompanied by tea and, a speciality of the Museum, George Washington cake.

There was so much to see and be inspired by, including photographs and wonderful fashion from the 1920s Jazz Age, American Folk Art and intriguing American interiors from the late 16th Century to the 1800s. We also saw contemporary Bargello embroidery by Joyce Petschek, who uses an incredible array of rich colours and complex patterns in her work.

‚Äč  American Museum Textiles Trip September 2017

American Museum Textiles Trip September 2017

In addition, the Museum’s stunning collection of patchwork quilts, dating from the 18th Century through to the 1960s, never fails to impress. The new exhibition in the basement was also of great interest and included an array of rare artefacts, from a Native American Indian dress (buck-hide decorated with cowrie shells) to a very impressive Indian Chief’s headdress made from eagle feathers.

Pupils said:

"It was really interesting to see the fashion from the 1920s. The fabrics and techniques used for decoration were amazing!"

"It was such an inspiring day, there was so much to see and the café was very good as well!"

"The patchwork quilts were incredible and will definitely inspire my work in the future."

We came away from our visit with a wealth of inspiration for our work in Textile Art, having experienced not only a wide range of textiles at first hand, but also having gained a fascinating insight into how the American culture developed through the early part of its creation.