At Hagley Museum, explosion of color, history

Sharon Silverman's vibrant yarn creations, inspired by a historic rug, spotlight the Hagley Museum entrance.

Sharon Silverman's vibrant yarn creations, inspired by a historic rug, spotlight the Hagley Museum entrance.

It’s not the kind of explosion one might associate with the historic Hagley Museum, the former home of the DuPont Company’s powder yards on the banks of the Brandywine Creek.

Lilies are among the crocheted flowers adorning the Hagley Museum entrance that drew their inspiration from a rug on display inside.

Lilies are among the crocheted flowers adorning the Hagley Museum entrance that drew their inspiration from a rug on display inside.

In conjunction with the Hagley’s “Unraveling Stories” exhibit, a Birmingham Township crochet artist on Thursday, March 26, put the finishing touches on her latest example of yarn bombing – a trend of using vibrant fiber art to make public spaces explode with color.

Inspired by a large hooked rug on view in the exhibit, Sharon Silverman designed the yarn installation based on the rug’s themes. “I wanted to create something colorful and inviting that connects with the history Nancy du Pont Reynolds Cooch depicted in her incredible piece,” Silverman said. “These items are significant to the du Pont family and the site, including fleur-de-lis, flowers, and animals.”

Toward that end, Silverman has adorned the iron gates and brick pillars at the entrance to the museum with twining yarn creations based on images from the rug: cattails, lilies, daffodils, morning glories, and more.

“Unraveling Stories” is an experimental exhibition that explores a single object: the largest hooked rug in the museum’s collection. “Unraveling Stories” will share four stories through the rug: the story of the artistic tradition from which it came, the narrative story depicted in its images, the scientific story behind the experimental materials used in its making, and the personal story of the artist who made it. The exhibit runs through Sunday, July 26.

Crochet expert Sharon Silverman shows an illustration of the intricately detailed rug that inspired they yarn display outside the Hagley Museum.

Crochet expert Sharon Silverman shows an illustration of the intricately detailed rug that inspired they yarn display she created outside the Hagley Museum.

The yarn installation is also an opportunity to promote the fiber arts and encourage people of all ages to visit Hagley, Silverman said. “The site is a Brandywine Valley treasure—so much more than the word `museum’ implies,” said Silverman, who became a fan of Hagley when she was writing a travel book, Brandywine Valley: The Informed Traveler’s Guide.

“Hagley is so excited about partnering with Sharon Silverman to bring attention to our new experimental exhibition, while also providing a canvas for public arts on the Brandywine,” said Hagley Director of Museum Services Joan Hoge-North.

Silverman said she was grateful to Hoge-North, for her openness to the project and support. “I also owe a huge thank you to Hagley’s handwork volunteers,” Silverman said. “The group embraced the yarn art concept and made many of the pieces that are incorporated into the artwork. Their help was invaluable.”

The installation also includes fleur-de-lis panels on the stone entrance pillars of the Hagley Museum.

The installation also includes fleur-de-lis panels on the stone entrance pillars of the Hagley Museum.

A professional member of the Crochet Guild of America (CGOA) and a design member of The National NeedleArts Association (TNNA), Silverman last displayed a yarn bomb exhibition in December at the Delaware Museum of Natural History.

The Hagley Museum is located on Route 141 in Wilmington. The GPS address is 200 Hagley Creek Road, Wilmington, De., 19807. Admission is $14 for adults, $10 for seniors and students, $5 for children 6 to 14, and free for members and children 5 and under. Exhibition-only admission is $6 for adults, seniors, and students, $2 for children 6 to 14, and free for members and children 5 and under.

For more information on the Hagley Museum, call 302-658-2400 on weekdays or visit www.hagley.org. To learn more about Silverman's work, visit www.SharonSilverman.com.

 

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (1 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)
Loading...

About Kathleen Brady Shea

Kathleen Brady Shea, a nearly lifelong area resident, has been reporting on local news for several decades, including 19 years at the Philadelphia Inquirer. She believes that journalists provide a vital watchdog service in the community, and she embraces that commitment. In addition to unearthing news, she also enjoys digging up dirt in her garden, a hobby that frequently fosters Longwood Gardens envy. Along with her husband, Pete, she lives in a historic residence near the Brandywine Battlefield, a property that is also home to a sheep, a goat, and a passel of fish.

Comments

comments

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.