Today is Museum Store Sunday, a day where we take a moment to stop and enjoy a museum that's close to our hearts. For me there are so many! I can while away hours in a museum and, having travelled extensively around the world with my work, I will seek out a museum or two, to feed my soul and capture my interest in something new.
I was honoured to be asked to create the image for Museum Store Sunday 2022 by the Museum Store Association. The cute picture I drew, shows popular items sold in museum stores around the world, together with some cute museum buildings. I have so many favourite things from museum gift shops: a lovely, silver ring from the Museum Reina Sofia in Madrid, which also sells my Madrid art printed onto a tote bag.
My cross-over handbag is from the Wallace Collection. My favourite scarf, from an exhibition of the work of Jean Michel Basquait is from the Barbican gift shop. And I use soaps that come from Sintra, a group of palaces just outside of Lisbon, and which also stocks a range of gifts and homewares printed with my art. I have happy memories of walking around the extensive grounds on a scorching hot day and finding some cool air in the castle and high ceiling rooms within the palaces.
Collaborating with the gift shops for museums and art galleries around the world has been a core part of my business. Design projects are now coordinated by my licensees across the globe, leaving me free to focus on creating the art, which they will then print onto a whole range of stationery, gifts and home wares. Some creative projects that I have loved include:
The Roman Baths. Where I also got to go on a tour of this amazing historical site. I love the colour of the water, which works wonderfully with the burnt orange and biscuit colours within the design. The natural canvas tote bag, printed with my art, remains one of the shop's best sellers.
My art tells a story, and an image I created for the National Museum of Cardiff is an example of how explains the processes and heritage of the coal mining industry in Wales. I loved drawing the Big Pit and trying to show the above and below ground activity in a mining village.
I love industrial heritage and manufacturing. Having been brought up in a print business and then founding and running an eco-manufacturing business for many years in Sheffield, the process of making and selling something is in my blood. I am therefore always drawn to museums that tell a story of how something is made. I was therefore delighted to be asked by the Museum of Making in Derby to create a piece of art, to be printed onto a canvas tote bags, mugs and other sustainable souvenirs. The resulting image, by my sister brand (aka me) Dasher, is a simple infographic that celebrates the world's first factory. Go Derby!