What’s been happening at the Museum Part Two…Continuing our look at changes to the Museum this winter and continuing upstairs with some minor alterations (before we look at the major ones!). We re-displayed the Magic in Wartime display and brought out some charms from the Museum store.
We also had a move around in the Curses display to make space for the two headed pig which has returned from its period on loan to the National Maritime Museum, Falmouth. We also got a couple more items from the store out and put them on display here.
We put a copy of Jos Smith's Maiden/Crone painting next to the blasting rod in cursing as the witch figure in this painting is carrying a similar object.
We also redisplayed the staircase area to have a "Sacred Sites" theme. This includes: large photos of stone circles, photos of rituals at sacred sites (courtesy of John Hooper) and a fogou model with effects created for the Museum by Dave Lee (who generously donated his time, skill and some bits of technical kit).
Below: The fogou model at the top of the stairs (watch it for a few seconds and something will appear!) It is accompanied by this text:
Fogou is Cornish for cave and they are ancient man made entrances to the earth. They were created between 500BC and 500AD. Fogous are usually one long curve passage. Some researchers claim they were places of ritual and ceremony. Nearly all the structures are aligned to the midsummer solstice sunrise. In Cornish lore, they are places of connection with the world of the spirits. A place to think about the sacredness of the Earth and the ancestors.
Text inspired by Cheryl Straffon, The Earth Goddess (1997).
Above: fantastic green man carving by Eddie Greywolk Marine is also now displayed on the stairs.
Another wonderful addition to this part of the Museum is "The Witch's House" or the "Mandrake Wizard at Home". This was originally made for the Museum in the 1990s and was on display for many years (can you remember where)? Last year, it was removed due to refurbishments and we racked our brains to find somewhere to put it to do it justice. Now it has a new home and has be re-fashioned and upgraded (it now has lights!) and is on display on the stairs. Thanks so much to Steve Patterson for all the love and effort that went into this wonderful display - it is a perfect miniature witch's den. You really have to see it to take in its full charm but here are some photos in case you can't make it down here for a while (above without flash, below with flash!)