Mythical Creatures – including Dragons !

Dragons , Monsters and Angels – a Ceramics Exhibition Review

Dragons , Monsters and Angels

William de Morgan plate in blue and white with Medieval dragon motif .
De Morgan dragon plate

We went a couple of times to our local stately home Cannon Hall http://www.cannon-hall.com to look at the “Mythical Creatures” display, taken from their famous ceramics collection.

The Blue Vase with Green Dragon
The Red Dragon

It was really very impressive and I felt quite inspired by the fascinating dragon vase and the plate upstairs in the gallery produced by the famous Victorian designer William de Morgan who married Evelyn , whose family lived in Cannon Hall. ( She is , of course a famous artist in her own right ). This particularly caught my eye as it was a medieval depiction of a dragon, looking like a huge worm or serpent, with no wings. So I painted my own version, first in watercolour [ see above] and then acrylic.

Acrylic painting of a green dragon with no wings surrounded by flames , in a mountain landscape.
The Green Dragon

I modelled my acrylic painting on this style of imaginary beast – it still took me a while to figure out how to make the body look realistic without the wings.

Pencil drawing of the head and shoulders of a ceramic statuette of the  Greek God Pan
Pan , the Greek God

I had a great time sketching the ceramic bust of the Greek god Pan that was also displayed upstairs. The porcelain piece was very delicately coloured – the flesh was quite convincing ! I enjoyed the challenge of drawing his crown of leaves, pointed ears and horns.

Greek style  plate in orange and black with angels
Greek style plate with angels
Black and orange bowl with sphinx motif
Sphinx Bowl

Back downstairs, you could see all the mythical creatures you could think of – and a few you never would have thought of – fairies, gods, dragons, angels, unicorns, sphinxes and other strange hybrids of human and animal origin. I was even inspired to paint my own angel this Christmas. To see more angels, look at my December post ‘Nearly Christmas ‘

An Angel for Christmas
Salt Cellar

This is a real treasure house of plates, sculpture, vases and tableware. I’m looking forward to the next display that the curators will, no doubt, put together.

A beautifully illustrated page from an old journal with illustrations of imaginary creatures
Imaginary Beasts at Cannon Hall

The image above with the imaginary beasts is from a sketchbook kept by one of the residents of Cannon Hall in the past.

There was loads of inspiration for creative work, if only I had the time ! I hope you enjoyed my little exhibition review .

One Reply to “Mythical Creatures – including Dragons !”

  1. Yes, they were a very talented family. Evelyn’s sister Gertrude was a sculptor of some renown and their uncle Roddam Spencer Stanhope was associated with the Pre raphaelites.

Let me know what you think !