History of Art by Naomi Phelan Blog No1

10 June 2014


If we are honest, how many of us creative types feel obliged to enjoy traipsing round galleries and museums, admiring artwork and objects that, quite frankly we find a bit boring, whilst secretly counting down the minutes before its tea and cake time? - Philistine? Me? – No!!!!!, Gallery coffee-shop cake and tea admirer – absolutely, lover of Art and Design – without a doubt.

You see, going round art galleries and museums is a funny old sport. Everyone else seems to be hot to trot, noses up against the vitrines and paintings, standing back a few paces to admire, cogitate and hmmm, whilst I am more a wander round kind of girl who despite my best efforts, find myself deliberating about the temperature of the room, and admiring the outfit of the lady next to me. If the latter sounds more like you (and believe me, you’re in good company) and you feel you should be getting more out of those big old fashioned canvases or modern piles of metal, plastic and wire, fear no more. For I am here to help you to enjoy visiting an exhibition, convert you to the elevated sport of picture spotting and still be able to place the tea shop (guilt free) near the top of your cultural experience. How? You may ask – simple, by introducing you to the love of story-telling, the satisfaction of discovery, and the wonder of looking! You see, my new friends - the ‘History of Art and Design’ is not in fact, about galleries at all, but about opening the biggest history book in the world and looking at all the wonderful illustrations and pictures laid out in its pages.

Well, as this is Blog no 1, I guess it would be a good place to introduce myself. My name is Naomi and I think most of my colleagues and friends would describe me as a colourful, approachable lady – middle aged though young at heart, a little bit nutty (in a creative way) and very, very enthusiastic about my subject. I have taught the History of Art and Design for a long time, working as a gallery, freelance, and college lecturer and in doing so I have taught many courses ranging from the History of Western Art, through the History of Interior Design to the History of Fashion and Clothing. So, as you can imagine, I am always learning and discovering new and exciting things on a daily basis - living out the premise ‘that the more you find out, the less you know’ – and how true that is!!

Today my new discovery is You! As I start out on my blogging career - I have no qualms in telling you that I am in fact, a virgin blogger and as a result have no idea where our journey will go. We are indeed co-travellers. What I do know however, is that I am very excited about sharing what I have already learnt with you, am looking forward to writing about all those interesting things that I have yet to discover, and can’t wait to open up our big history book, see where it falls open and start exploring.

First stop – Check your Head!! - Coming soon!

Naomi x

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