Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Delftware tile - James Ince & Sons (Umbrellas) Ltd.

Delftware tile - James Ince & Sons (Umbrellas) Ltd.

One of the many new 'Delft' tiles I am creating for my Umbra Sumus (We Are But Shadows) solo show at the end of this month (April 27 - 29 inclusive) in Spitalfields.

This one represents the family business of James Ince & Sons, who have been making umbrellas and parasols in east London for nigh on two centuries, if not longer. Current owner is sixth generation umbrella-maker Mr Richard Ince, who works out of his factory in Vyner St, E2.

One of their many clients is the stage musical version of P T Travers' Mary Poppins, who go through quite a few apparently during a run. Here I have depicted fiction's most famous nanny's trademark parrot-headed brolly. (An Old English word for parrot was poppinjay, and Poppins Court off Fleet St, just minutes from St. Paul's, is said to be named after a signboard or tavern showing that bird, that once stood there. Maybe that's the connection?)

To-day in London it is wet and grey - the perfect day for a wonderful well-made Ince umbrella!

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