William Morris Gallery
- | 020 8496 4391
- | www.walthamforest.gov.uk/william-morris
- Free entry to all.
- View venue & entry details
Housed in a fine Georgian building, the gallery is the only one in Britain dedicated to the leader of the Arts and Crafts movement.
The gallery explores Morris's work as a designer, author, businessman and political activist, ranging from his utopian novel News from Nowhere to Morris & Co. furniture catalogues. He lived in the building that houses the gallery from 1848 to 1856, with his widowed mother and eight siblings.
The William Morris Gallery was crowned Museum of the Year 2013 for its major renovation and creative reinterpretation of the life and work of Morris.
The new displays range in scale from a full-room reproduction of one of Morris’s workshops to a single sheet of paper, on which Morris explains his rejection of a career as a clergyman to pursue a life dedicated to art.
His political activism is a recurring theme – one object is displayed against a background listing the speeches he made advocating socialism, while a ‘fighting for a cause’ board invites visitors to submit their campaigns alongside Morris’s own, ‘art for all’ and ‘abolish capitalism’.
Art Funded works
Glorious Morris & Co stained glass and Burne-Jones tiles bought with help from the Art Fund are on prominent display, while the Brangwyn gift – made through the Art Fund in 1960 – is housed in a new space dedicated to Morris's protege.
Inspired by Georgian orangeries, the new tea room offers not only a space for visitors to rest their legs but also a panoramic view of Lloyd Park, which has been replanted using 18th-century designs.