I have lived in Hoxton for 8 years now, and all this time The Geffrye Museum has been right on my doorstep. It is a little gem of a museum, set in a beautiful 18th-century almshouse and surrounded by gardens. It is the museum of the home, with an excellent balance of interaction and information.
The Geffrye’s evocative displays of London’s middle-class living rooms and gardens illustrate homes and home life through the centuries, reflecting changes in society, behaviour, style and taste. The period rooms are not the living rooms of actual people, instead they show how styles and tastes have evolved in the past four hundred years. For me, a person who interacts more visually, the museum does not just tell you about the history, it shows you. Perfect for children and adults alike this needs to be on your list to visit (ehem, a idea for the summer holidays).
Or leave the kids behind and you can enjoy the return of The Geffrye’s secret garden bar this summer with a series of evenings featuring some of London’s most creative bartenders, serving drinks inspired by and even using ingredients from, the museum’s gardens. So pull up a deckchair and enjoy delicious cocktails and sizzling street food in the idyllic surrounds of the period gardens.
In September the Geffrye Museum partners with the London Design Festival for their annual event Ceramics in the City. This fair, featuring over 50 potters, is a chance to meet the makers, browse and buy the work of leading ceramic artists from across the UK. Trends to watch this year include pops of colour and splashes of gold, Japanese and Chinese influences and work inspired by natural organic forms and storytelling.
The show will feature a mix of well-established makers such as Karen Bunting, Jane Cox, Ben Davies, Akiko Hirai, Ruth King and Sue Paraskeva together with rising talents including Judit Esztergomi, Miya Kurihara, Kirsty Macrae, Yuta Segawa, Jessica Thorn, Maria Wojdat and Mizuyo Yamashita.
So many reasons to visit this museum and oasis in the city, there are no excuses!
The Geffrye is open Tuesday – Sunday 10am – 5pm, Bank Holiday Mondays 10am – 5pm. Free entry
The Garden Variety Bar runs from 27th July-1st September on Thursdays and Fridays from 5pm. Tickets £3 (more info here)
Ceramics in the City begins with an open evening on Thursday 21st September 6-8.30pm and then is on from Friday 22nd-Sundau 24th September, 10am-5pm.
This will be the last Ceramics in the City before the museum closes on Sunday 7 January 2018 for a transformational, £18m re-development.
The Geffrye is scheduled to re-open in winter 2019.
Written by Julia Hamilton-Griffin