Engaging with our portrait collection

Our Community Engagement partnerships with BlindAid, Age UK Islington and North London Cares continue to strengthen and we have been busy planning and hosting creative Zoom workshops & events, reports our Community Engagement Officer Nichola Charalambou.

Highlights from October included guest Silver Sunday and Art Appreciation workshops for Age UK Islington and the second in our series of monthly Creative Writing Zoom Workshops for BlindAid.

For Silver Sunday, we introduced the newly restored paintings in our beautified Great Chamber and took the theme of Talking Heads, to bring the portraits to life and also to get to know each other better. Here you can see a photo from the workshop. As you can see, we had a great turnout. We took inspiration from the titles that have been assigned to our portraits during research and wrote titles for ourselves – asking the question Who Are We? It was a fantastic opportunity to get to know each other.

Here’s a lovely comment from one of the participants:

“Just wanted to say l enjoyed the Charterhouse workshop; the time just flew by!”

Later in October, our Community Engagement Volunteer Josh and I were guest speakers for Age UK Islington’s Painting Appreciation session on Zoom. Josh had prepared for the workshop by carrying out lots of research on the Renaissance and paid particular attention to the wonderful reproduction of Quentin Metsys’ ‘sieve portrait’ of Queen Elizabeth I by Ying Yang, which is proudly exhibited in our Great Chamber, alongside the portraits of the Governors and Charterhouse founder Thomas Sutton.

Here’s some feedback from two of the participants:

“Thank you for organising today’s session.  I found the topic fascinating and really appreciate the amount of time and effort the two presenters gave to the task.”

“Thank you for the session. Will definitely look at The Charterhouse website.”

For our October Blind Aid Creative Writing Zoom Workshop, our Community Engagement Volunteer Fran took on the character of Elizabeth I, inspired by the ‘Sieve Portrait.’ The group asked questions about the time in which Elizabeth lived and we described the portrait in detail for them. The writers then continued on from Fran’s monologue – each stepping into the shoes of Elizabeth I.

We very much look forward to continuing in November!

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