Charlotte Cory

Charlotte Cory is a London based artist best known for her VISITORIANA - a complete, fantastical, "wholly believable" alternative 19th Century. A post-Darwinian universe of reworked, recycled, collaged and montaged Victorian "carte de visite" photography and her own photography combined with taxidermy.  

I remember my astonishment and excitement the first time I visited the Soane Museum.  It was the day i finished school and a post A-level treat.  This might have contributed to the joy but what i distinctly remember from that visit was the  picture gallery.  Not just the phenomenal Hogarth series etc but the way they were hung on doors that swung open.  I have always been the most terrible accumulator - of books, shells, Victoriana.  You name it, I collect it.  But here I had met my match.  Clutter was good.  Extravagant clutter even better.  Over the years i have often been back.  I have lingered for hours in each of the rooms - i think some of the attendants must have been alarmed at the way i drifted into a dithering daze.  Perhaps they thought I was planning to pilfer something.  I still find myself mesmerised by the house.  By the glorious collections, yes.  But also the light wells, the mirrors, the…  Well, everything really.  When i was first invited to create artworks for the Museum, at first for their various fundraising auctions and latterly for the lovely shop, I leapt at the chance.  Here my characters can wander as I do.  They are Visitorians (based on 19th photographic calling cards, carte-de-visites) and where better to visit and linger than Sir John’s Museum.  There was always, by tradition, a resident cat at the Museum and of course Lady Soane had her little Manchester terrier, Fanny - but now, thanks to me, the Museum also has crocodiles, stoats, mice, rats, bears and tigers…