Short read: Arts & Crafts in Chelsea.
Long read: There’s something to be said for slipping the surly, solemn, sober bonds of the gallery. For going to where the artists lived and loved and worked and walked and socialised and sensualised. And nowhere, in London, quite like Chelsea – with its charm’d magic casements – for saying hello to all that. Hello to “the Cathedral of the Arts and Crafts Movement.” (More than hello – because we’ll tour its interior.) Hello to the most important surviving domestic mediaeval building in London. Hello to Whistler’s house. And Carlyle’s. And Bram Stoker’s. And Shaw’s Swan House and Boyce’s Queen Anne House and no end of studios and Chelsea potteries. And of course the main artery of Swinging 60s fashion and design. And not forgetting a very special studio-house. [Pause for fanfare] The only house in London by the one British architect to be ranked with Antoni Gaudi in Barcelona and Frank Lloyd Wright in Chicago. It’s a one-off but in it we can see “the strangeness of his work, the self-conscious dislocations of his architecture, and the intensity of feeling in his interiors” – can see why he’s in the select company of that handful of architect-designers of great originality and international reputation. And especially with a walk like this, it’s not just what you see – it’s how you see it. The weaving together – backgrounding, making connections – takes an art historian. Her name is Molly.
THE ARTISTS’ COLONY – THE PRACTICALS
The Artists’ Colony – Chelsea Arts & Crafts takes place at 10.45 am on Saturday, October 31 and at 10.45 am on Saturday, March 20.
To go on The Artists’ Colony – Arts & Crafts in Chelsea walk meet Molly just outside the exit of Sloane Square Tube.
LONDON WALKS REVIEWS
“Without a doubt the best walking tour company currently operating in London” Stardust
“by far the most impressive series of walks that I have ever encountered are those offered by London Walks” Travel & Enjoy
LONDON WALKS PRIVATE WALKS
If you can’t make the regularly scheduled, just-turn-up, public Artists’ Colony walk do think about booking one as a private tour. If you go private you can have the Artists’ Colony walk – or any other London Walk – on a day and at a time that suits your convenience. We’ll tailor it to your requirements. Ring Fiona or Noel or Mary on 020 7624 3978 or email us at [email protected] and we’ll set it up and make it happen for you. A private London Walk is good value for an individual or couple and sensational value for a group. And the clincher: a private London Walk makes an ideal group or educational or birthday party or office (team-building) or club outing. Or indeed a delightful, thoughtful and unusual gift – be it a birthday or anniversary or Christmas present or whatever. Merchandise schmerchandise (gift wrapped or not) – but giving someone an experience, now that’s special. Memories make us rich.