Saturday, 5 February 2011
As I'm sure I've observed before, one of the joys of visiting Salts Mill in Saltaire is that there seems to be something new to see each time. I've lost count of the number of times I have wandered around the 1853 Gallery, getting my fill of David Hockney's art, the colourful stationery and artists' supplies, art and photography books and bright ceramics - all wrapped up in the heady scent from the vases of lilies they always have around the gallery. But it was only this last time that I saw this unusual jardiniere - another Burmantofts design. It has almost certainly been there for ages but I've never noticed it before. I think it depicts a gryphon, a mythical creature with the body of a lion and the head and wings of an eagle. Thought to be an especially powerful and majestic creature, they are known for guarding treasure and priceless possessions - surely a good reason for this one to be sitting in the 1853 Gallery amongst the valuable Hockney artworks and Burmantofts ceramics.