Trinkets and towers

Wendy Ramshaw’s Room of Dreams reaches its final destination

For more than 50 years, Wendy Ramshaw has been at the forefront of applied art, first making her name as a radical jewellery designer and more latterly with her public art pieces. Room of Dreams, at Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art (Mima), is the last chance to see her touring installation and retrospective which encompasses everything from jewellery to large scale furniture.

Originally displayed at the Scottish Gallery in 2002, Room of Dreams is a rich concoction of work that displays more than 80 pieces with reference to storytelling, myths and fairytales.

‘It demonstrates how her practice flows between jewellery and design for architecture,’ says Mima curator Alix Collingwood.

Ramshaw’s pieces play with both scale and form. ‘Towers’ resembles some curious futuristic city landscape populated by gleaming sculptural skyscrapers. These sculptures, more than 1m high, were inspired by her early stacking rings, which consisted of both the rings and a display stand. For the past few decades, she has been working on a more architectural scale on commissions for screens and gates, and the show includes photos and a maquette of her 2001 gates for Mowbray Park in Sunderland, which as a local she knew well. There are also images of her cast bronze gates at Hyde Park in 2010 for Candy & Candy.

While Ramshaw is probably still best known for her radical paper jewellery from the start of her career in the 1960s, this exhibition gives an insight into her much broader and highly influential body of work.


Wendy Ramshaw: Rooms of Dreams, until December 4 2014, Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art
, Centre Square, Middlesbrough 


www.visitmima.com

  • Room of Dreams.
    Room of Dreams. · Credit: Courtesy of George Gammer
  • Anodised aluminum, stainless steel, Delrin, brass, crystal and optical glass 16 to 100 cm high.
    Anodised aluminum, stainless steel, Delrin, brass, crystal and optical glass 16 to 100 cm high. · Credit: Photo courtesy of Graham Pym 2005
  • Model for the ‘Room of Dreams’.  Mixed media with gilded exterior.
    Model for the ‘Room of Dreams’. Mixed media with gilded exterior. · Credit: Photo courtesy of Graham Pym 2012
  • Something Special.  Screen printed paper.
    Something Special. Screen printed paper. · Credit: Photo courtesy of David Watkins 1966
  • Prospero’s Table, 
 62.5 x 166 x 15 cm Collection: Museum of Fine Arts Houston (Alice Pratt Brown Museum Fund).
    Prospero’s Table, 
 62.5 x 166 x 15 cm Collection: Museum of Fine Arts Houston (Alice Pratt Brown Museum Fund). · Credit: Photo courtesy of Graham Pym