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The Gardiner Museum is among the few museums in the world focused on ceramics, and is one of the most important specialty museums internationally. It houses approximately 4,000 objects, including European porcelain, ceramics from the Ancient Americas, Chinese porcelain, Japanese porcelain, and contemporary ceramics. Search the collection online!
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Part of the Gardiner Signature Lecture Series
The Robert and Marian Cumming Lecture
This lecture is FREE for Gardiner Friends. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to register.
On June 19, 1862, the frail young Viscount Milton and his university friend and doctor, Walter Cheadle, embarked on a journey to cross Canada by land from the Atlantic to the Pacific.
The first “tourists” to travel the Yellowhead Pass, they published a bestselling account of their adventures, entitled
The North-West Passage by Land, illustrated with images taken from Cheadle’s drawings and photographs. The journey was also commemorated by two superlative Minton bone china dessert services that were specially commissioned for Dr. Cheadle and Lord Milton. Each piece was decorated with scenes from the book.
This lecture explores into the story of Milton and Cheadle’s remarkable Canadian odyssey and the two services. It accompanies a special porcelain display in the Gardiner Museum’s lobby.
About the Speaker
Meredith Chilton, Gardiner Museum Chief Curator
Meredith Chilton, the Gardiner Museum’s Chief Curator, is an independent specialist in early European porcelain, dining, and social culture of the eighteenth century, as well as theatre history. Educated at the University of East Anglia and Manchester University, she first joined the Gardiner Museum in 1983. As Acting Director and Curator, she worked with the team responsible for opening the museum. Subsequently, she became the museum’s curator, a role she retained for over twenty years.
In 2004 Meredith left the Gardiner Museum to produce a major three-volume monograph for the Melinda and Paul Sullivan Foundation: Fired by Passion, Vienna Baroque Porcelain of Claudius Innocentius Du Paquier. The English edition was launched with an exhibition she co-curated at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York in 2009; the German edition at the Liechtenstein Palace Museum in Vienna. Meredith was the principal contributor to Daily Pleasures: French Ceramics from the MaryLou Boone Collection (Los Angeles County Museum of Art: 2012). She is currently working on the English edition of a catalogue for the Kiscell Museum in Budapest.
Meredith has curated over 20 exhibitions, published approximately 50 articles and books, and has made four films with the CBC. In 1990, one of her articles was republished in Best Canadian Essays, and again in Prose Models for Undergraduates. Her 2001 publication, Harlequin Unmasked: The Commedia dell’Arte and Porcelain Sculpture was awarded three international awards for research and theatre history. Meredith teaches and lectures extensively in North America and Europe. She has sat on a variety of Boards, and is the honorary member of three ceramics institutions. In 2005 she was honoured by the Gardiner Museum Volunteers, who named the Meredith Chilton Commedia dell’Arte Gallery in perpetuity at the Gardiner Museum.
Presented by Robert & Marian Cumming
Image: Dessert Plate from the Milton Service, “Our Night on Eagle River – Expecting the Crees” (detail), c. 1867, England, Minton, Purchased with a gift from N. Robert Cumming, G04.20.1
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Canada, M5S 2C7