Wednesday, June 29, 2011


Gamble Room, ceiling detail
I am having a wonderful but very full time here in London. We are overwhelmed - whether it's the crush of tourists in Covent Garden, or the noise and cacaphony of the Brick Lane market in the East End, there are so many sights and sounds it has been hard to do more than just take it all in.

Everything is full of detail and meaning, and resonates its history and place in popular culture.

You know how you can get overwhelmed while visiting a museum? And you decide you have to take it in one or two wings at a time, and save the rest for another day. Well, the city of London is a little like that.

And speaking of museums - we visited the Victoria & Albert Museum yesterday. Even the museum cafe is overwhelming.

The V & A, as far as anyone can tell, was the first museum ever to have a restaurant inside for hungry patrons to rest and eat. The cafe was decorated in a style to showcase current decorative design.

So here is the Gamble Room at the V & A. It was designed by James Gamble and built around 1865. You can enjoy your tuna salad on baguette beneath the ceramic-encrusted columns and arches and the enameled tin ceiling.

And that's just one of the rooms. Another was designed by William Morris.

Victoria and Albert Museum, Morris Room detail
You have a sandwich lunch in there and try not to feel overwhelmed!


Hamish Mack said...

Thanks for these pictures Aunt Snow, they are super. I loved the Gordons ones and these are just spectacular. Imagine having to clean the columns!!!

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

Imagine having to clean the columns!!!

I think you just need a little more roughage, A.K.

Jason, as himself said...

Vacation overload!

Sue said...

Oh my is beautiful. I love going places where there is much to see, but sometimes I feel as if I need a vacation from my vacation afterwards. I guess the key is balance...but who has time for that when in a wonderful place? Enjoy and take time to rest a bit!

Bronwyn Park said...

There was something about the 1800's that just led to Mad Architectural Excess. Have you been to Brighton??