The Gilded Canopy

Sandra Knapp and Bob Press

This book reveals one of London’s best kept secrets - the ceiling panels of the Natural History Museum.

ISBN:
978 0 565 09198 9
Format:
Hardback
Price:
£15.00
Published:
November 2005
Size:
171 x 216 mm
Extent:
168 pp
Illustrations:
Colour throughout
Publisher:
Natural History Museum

Details

How can a major art collection be on full display to the public, yet never be noticed? The answer is that it is on the ceiling. These painted panels were a key part of the Natural History Museum’s original design and are covered in plants of all descriptions, painted in rich colours and finely gilded.

With specially commissioned photographs showing every single panel and full of intriguing plant histories, this book is a fascinating insight into one of London’s best kept secrets.

‘...each one tells a story – plants that have made and broken Empires, been the cause for terrible human suffering, or have brought joy through their beauty. ... the plants themselves tell stories that bring to life the times in which the Museum was conceived and built - the Victorian age.’ From the Preface to The Gilded Canopy

See inside

Look inside this book to get an idea of its content.

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Authors

Sandra Knapp is author of Potted Histories (2004). The French edition was winner of the prestigious French gardening-book award, the Redouté Prize.

Bob Press is an expert in Museum history and Associate Keeper of the Botany Department. He is co-author of Nature's Treasurehouse (2001).

Art at the Museum

The Museum is home to the largest collection of natural history art in the world, holding nearly half a million artworks.

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