Tuesday, 13 September 2011

An Autumn day in Sussex - Charleston House and Cuckmere Haven

It was my Birthday on Sunday and when my OH asked what I wanted to do for the day, I was suddenly struck with a flash of inspiration and almost yelped Charleston House in Sussex. Why I haven't visited before is a complete mystery, the whole day was a delight.

Charleston House is the former residence of Vanessa Bell and Duncan Grant of Bloomsbury Group fame. I was so excited by it all that I just wanted to run from room to room hugging things that took my fancy. However, I had to behave as it was quite busy and well ordered. The stewards in each room were extremely knowledgeable and approachable which was great because there is so much to talk about. Each room is filled with paintings, painted furniture, ceramics and tapestries. 

Understandably photography is forbidden in the house and you really need to visit as the house has an atmosphere that can't be captured in a photo. I was particularly impressed by the liveliness and I would say almost urgency of the decoration around the house. I found it inspiring and uplifting and can thoroughly recommend it as a lovely day out. There is also a cafe with an enchanting garden, a shop full of beautiful things and a gallery.

Here are some memories of the visit to whet your appetite. 

Opussyquinusque, The Cat c. 1932 - Duncan Grant (1885-1978)

Log Box - Duncan Grant

Detail from Duncan Grant's bedroom

Green Bathroom

Into the Garden

Colours that remind me of my visit to Charleston House

A walk down to the sea at Cuckmere Haven

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