Focus on Studio Ceramics: York Art Gallery and a Private Collection
Monday 7 March 2016

York Art Gallery recently reopened after an £8 million renovation which included the creation of the new Centre of Ceramic Art (CoCA) (see p.4). The Gallery holds an extensive and representative collection of British studio ceramics with more than 5000 works. Helen Walsh, the curator of ceramics, will give us a private tour of CoCA. There will be time to explore the galleries on your own.
In the afternoon we will visit a private collection that includes ceramics as well as metalwork by W.A.S. Benson and Italian 20th-century glass, and meet York ceramicist Ben Arnup, who will talk about his work.


Visit to Pugin’s House ‘The Grange’ in Ramsgate
Wednesday 13 April 2016

‘We should have had no Morris, no Street, no Shaw, no Webb, no Bodley, no Rossetti, no Burne-Jones. No Crane, but for Pugin.’ J.D. Sedding 1888
The Grange was built by A.W.N Pugin as his family home from 1843 onwards. His approach was ground-breaking at the time. Functions and materials were frankly expressed and all aspects of the interiors richly and colourfully decorated to his own designs. Pugin also designed and paid for St Augustine Church next door.


Visit to the National Art Library at the V&A
Monday 18 April 2016

As well as being Britain's foremost public research library for art and design, the National Art Library holds the V&A's collections of book arts. In the beautiful 1880s reading room, Library curators will host a private viewing of treasures including calligraphy, artistic bookbinding and private press books, as well as superbly designed dustjackets. We shall see works from the library's well-known collections exemplifying artists' response to the book format, from Pre-Raphaelites to Picasso to Paula Rego and the modern genre of 'artists' books.


Visit to the Ken Stradling Collection and the Red Lodge Wigwam, Bristol
Thursday 5 May 2016

The day begins with the Ken Stradling collection of 20th- and 21st-century craft and design at the Bristol Guild of Applied Art. Our visit coincides with a rare opportunity to view at the nearby Red Lodge the amazing Wigwam (1919, C.F.W. Denning), the private clubhouse of the Bristol Savages, ‘brothers of the brush’, open for their annual exhibition. The day will conclude with either a viewing (subject to availability) of the Bristol University Wills Memorial Building Great Hall (1915–25), ‘a tour de force in Gothic Revival’ ( Pevsner), or the Walter Crane lunettes at the Royal West of England Academy.


‘Not suited to present day taste’: Pioneering Collectors of Victorian Decorative Arts
Thursday 12 May 2016

A one-day symposium, organised in association with the DAS to mark the opening of the refurbished Nineteenth-Century Galleries at the Ashmolean Museum. Speakers will include Charlotte Gere, Judy Rudoe (British Museum), Claire Longworth (De Morgan Foundation), Alex Werner (Museum of London), Max Donnelly (V&A) and Matthew Winterbottom (Ashmolean Museum). The symposium will be followed by an evening reception in the refurbished galleries.


Visit to St Augustine’s, Kilburn
Thursday 2 June 2016

The third in our series of visits to important Victorian London churches will be to this spacious Grade I masterpiece by John Loughborough Pearson (1870–7), with a soaring spire of 1898. Pevsner calls it ‘one of the best churches of its date in the whole of England’. We shall have a tour to include extensive wall paintings and stained glass by Clayton & Bell, reredos and screen by Samuel Joseph Nicoll, work by Giles Gilbert Scott and a lamp by Omar Ramsden.


A Walk from Pimlico to St James’s Park Station
Wednesday 8 June 2016

This little-explored area yields some intriguing buildings, ranging from a recent version of the classical Tower of the Winds in Athens to G.E. Street’s Victorian ‘Gothic’ St James the Less church, now integrated within Darbourne & Darke’s 1960s award-winning housing scheme, with its ‘secret’ gardens. We shall see more Victorianism, plus Arts and Crafts, Art Deco, modernism and a housing estate by Lutyens. The walk will last approximately 1? hours: we finish with wine in a pub near Holden’s impressive building incorporating the underground station (1929).


Visit to Drapers’ Hall
Wednesday 15 June 2016

‘Evocative of High Victorian plutocracy’ (the revised Pevsner), Drapers’ Hall has been remodelled several times since its destruction in the Great Fire of 1666, most notably by Herbert Williams in the 1860s and Sir T.G. Jackson in the 1890s. The luxurious interiors include an alabaster staircase and a vast two-storied Livery Hall with ceiling panels by Herbert Draper. The Drawing Room retains much of the furniture and decoration installed by Williams and the Crace firm in 1866–70. Some of the Company’s fine collection of pictures, sculpture and plate will also be on view.


Visit to the Huguenot Museum, Rochester, Kent
Tuesday 21 June 2016

We will visit the country’s best collections of Huguenot heritage in the new Museum, opened in May 2015, to see paintings, silver, silks and archives from the French Hospital collection, and look behind the scenes at the store and future plans. The afternoon will be led by Dr Tessa Murdoch, Deputy Keeper of Silver at the V&A, a trustee of The French Hospital, who will discuss the 19th-century silver collection onsite at the nearby French Hospital.


Visit to the John Lewis Heritage Centre, Cookham, Berks
Tuesday 5 July 2016

Tucked away in this pretty riverside village, the John Lewis Partnership has built an architect-designed centre to house its records. The archivist will introduce us to the archive and the history of the company from its inception in 1864 to the department store we know and love today. After a visit to the archive, which holds 25,000 samples of textiles as well as other artefacts, we will be free to explore a display of over 4000 fabric designs, including examples by Morris, Voysey and Lucienne Day. Return to the Centre after lunch or visit the Stanley Spencer Gallery nearby.

DAS events pic  

Visit to the Stanley Picker House
Thursday 8 September 2016

Stanley Picker was a patron of the arts who formed a very individual collection of 20th-century paintings and sculptures. His house was designed by Kenneth Wood and built in 1968. The specification was to create a space both to display his art and make a home. The two-hour guided tour will study the architecture, the paintings, the furnishings and the beautiful gardens.


Walking Tour of King’s Cross Development
Thursday 21 July and Saturday 23 July 2016

After 150 years of industrial use, the area to the north of King’s Cross station is being transformed into a vibrant new city quarter. Restored historic buildings are complemented by contemporary architecture by award-winning architects set within a framework of new parks, squares and streets. Our tour of this exciting area starts with the two iconic stations and finishes at a flat in the first residential building on the site, ArtHouse, designed by dRMM, where we will have refreshments.

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Foreign Tours 2016

Late May/June 2016

Alex Werner and Ann Eatwell will lead a five-day visit to Helsinki which will focus on Jugendstil and Modernism, the works of Aalto and Saarinen and the Finnish glass industry.

Dresden and Beyond
26 September – 1 October 2016

Dresden and Beyond: from Gründerzeit to Modernism to include the Hellerau garden district, Leipzig, and the Bauhaus at Dessau: led by Harriet Landseer

Please send expressions of interest in all cases to Margaret Baird, margaretjbaird@gmail


Spring 2017

Northern France led by Dr Leon Lock, based around visits to Lille, Roubaix, the Mallet-Stevens Villa Cavrois and the new Louvre at Lens



Events are for members only. To join the Society go to Membership

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