Thursday, March 31, 2011

Ellen Terry's Beetle Wing Dress



It's only moderately related to the Pre-Raphaelites, but I have to share a link to this incredible article (pointed out to me by a friend, Traci) about the restoration of actress Ellen Terry's gown for Macbeth, made out of thousands of beetle wings. It is the gown that features in Sargent's famous portrait of Terry, above.

5 comments:

Pauline said...

Thanks for the post, this dress is so amazing !

The Painting Queen said...

I have been following the story of this unusual beauty, and wish I could view it in person. Even put it on! Amazing painting too!

RowanDeVoe said...

I love this gown-just gorgeous. I grew up by a river with tons of these gorgeous beetles and they do shed their hard ecto skeletons. What an amazing project to a conservator! One of the most amazing pieces I ever got to work on was a Moss Green Velvet Fortuny with Venetian glass beads and Griffins silk screened all over it! Too much! I would love to be able to see this gown!

Von said...

Whow!Have you ever seen Lady Curzon's Peacock dress?

david robertson said...

Hi Grace

I stumbled upon your lovely blog and was delighted to meet a fellow enthusiast, albeit one geographically a little further from the Pre-Raphaelite heartland than I am!

Please forgive me if I’m pointing you towards resources that you are well aware of, but I’m proud that two galleries nearby [I live in the English Midlands] have excellent Pre-Raphaelite collections. These are the Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery, which has a wonderful online resource: www.preraphaelites.org/ and also Birmingham University’s art gallery, the Barber Institute: www.barber.org.uk/
30 miles further south there is a very good [though small] museum dedicated to William Morris’ work in Broadway Tower: www.broadwaytower.co.uk/

Enjoy!

Warm regards

David