All Fired Up

by Louise Irvine Our Innovations gallery has a new exhibit of Royal Doulton’s Chang ware and returning visitors are all fired up by this dramatic glaze effect, which is reminiscent of an erupting volcano. The thickly textured crackle glazes were developed by Charles J. Noke as part of his experimentation

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Behind the Mask

David Burnham Smith (1937-2019) by Louise Irvine “A mask tells us more than a face” according to Oscar Wilde and in this spirit, we are exploring the work of David Burnham Smith, and paying tribute to this brilliant British ceramic artist who died last year. David was always fascinated with

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Fancy Masks

Chelsea Rousso’s wearable glass art is one of the museum’s main attractions in the Carnival & Cabaret exhibit and many fans have created their own works of art at her creative glass classes. However, few realize that Chelsea enjoyed a hugely successful career as a fashion designer in New York,

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The Elegant Harp

By Louise Irvine During Esther Underhay’s Elegant Harp recital at WMODA, her husband, Paul, challenged us to spot the harp in the Art Nouveau gallery. First, I pointed out Arion on a Seahorse but later realized that he is carrying a lyre, which is different. Then I noticed that the

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Music in the Museum

Watch the virtual premiere of Esther’s Elegant Harp performance at WMODA Esther Underhay’s mission is to make the harp “sing” and to touch the hearts of her audience. With her Elegant Harp recital, she brings the joy of music to the museum. Esther’s program includes Classical music, jazz, Broadway favorites

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A Magical Ardmore Safari

by Louise Irvine Magnificent wild beasts tamed by Zulu riders take us on a journey of exploration through Africa’s diverse continent. The Travelers of Africa collection at WMODA was first developed by Ardmore in 2010 when South Africa hosted the World Cup Soccer and sports fans traveled to the continent

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Sewage to Sung

by Louise Irvine Monster Soup was a startling satire on London’s drinking water in 1828. A horrified woman drops her teacup as she looks at a drop of Thames water through a microscope. The cartoon directed at the London water companies was drawn by William Heath when commissioners were appointed

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Down the Drain in London

The Great Stink to the Great Smog by Louise Irvine The current pandemic prompted me to look back through the archives to see how a pioneering Victorian potter responded to an earlier public health crisis. For centuries, fighting disease meant battling foul smells as the miasma theory was widely held.

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Lighting up the World of WMODA

by Louise Irvine WMODA visitors are dazzled by the spectacular crystal chandeliers hanging throughout the museum. The six Marie Therese style chandeliers were made in Bohemia, now part of the Czech Republic. They once added glamour to the dining room at the Dania Beach Jai Alai Fronton and they were

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The Secret Garden

by Louise Irvine During lockdown, the more fortunate among us have found solace in our gardens, whether it be a patch of paradise in tropical Florida or a spring garden bursting into bloom in the north. For more than a century, the Royal Doulton Potteries have helped embellish gardens and

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