Style Court

Textiles, Art History, Gardens, and a Little Mental Traveling with Courtney Barnes 2006-2016


Natural Beauties

[Virtual sketchbook, University of Oxford Museums, image via Artefact.]

For a long time now, it has been de rigueur for published designers and tastemakers to include "favorites" lists (usually retail shops) at the back of books they write. In her popular book, Etcetera, acclaimed stylist Sibella Court offers an inspired little twist on the custom by also sharing a short list of natural history museums. One of her choices, Pitt Rivers Museum, jumped out at me; I was pretty sure I hadn't mentioned the institution in an earlier blog post, so I had to make a quick virtual visit.

[Star tortoise from India, University of Oxford, image via Artefact.]

 [Virtual sketchbook, University of Oxford Museums, image via Artefact.]

[Detail view, stone column from central hall of Natural History Museum, University of Oxford Museums, image via Artefact.]

I love it when museums are able to capitalize on the best aspects of the Internet and extend their reach to a broader audience with comprehensive online content. Just one of the resources available through Pitt Rivers' site is Artefact, an artist's treasure trove inspired by the University of Oxford Museums' collections. Participants include: Pitt Rivers Museum, Ashmolean, Oxford University Museum of Natural History, and the Museum of the History of Science.

  [Image via Artefact.]

Artefact enables browsing students, teachers, professional artists and simply the curious to explore objects, specimens, historical illustrations, and animated sketchbooks. Click here to soak it all in.

 [Australian guide Sibella Court and Keith Johnson at The Society Inc., as featured in Man Shops Globe, from Sundance Channel.]

And don't forget to catch Court tonight in episode three of Man Shops Globe's second season. (Shows are also available here, through iTunes.)

[Photo via hoyasmeg.]

Related: Emily Harrison and Fernbank Museum of Natural History, and Adventures with Dorothy.


Karena said...

Courtney, the detailing in the stone pillar is amazing. What wonderful artifacts.

Art by Karena

Unknown said...

Your blog is to die for lately! Exactly the sort of style that I want to read about it. Just amazing! Thanks for blogging and inspiring my day!

Style Court said...


Oh, thank you! What a nice comment to receive. Hope to keep the inspiring stuff coming :)

Style Court said...

Karena, yes! So striking isn't it?

Marissa Buschow said...

I had the Oxford natural history museum on my "to do" list this summer - now I can add another museum (or 2) to give me even more reason to go!