International Decorative Art

Peacock and Dragon Wall Hanging

Peacock and Dragon Wall Hanging

Design Date c. 1878

Designer William Morris (1834-1896, English)

Manufacturer Morris & Company (1875-present), London, England

Media wool

Dimensions 89 x 66 inches

This Peacock and Dragon Wall Hanging depicts a stylized Gothic dragon and peacock. William Morris, the founder of the Arts & Crafts Movement in England, was strongly influenced by John Ruskin, an architectural critic and a proponent of the Gothic Revival in the second half of the 19th century. Part of this Neo-Gothicism was a rejection of industrial design and an increased emphasis on the artisan and handicraft, an idea which would form the basis of the Arts & Crafts Movement. Morris was also influenced by medieval tapestries, which depicted fanciful creatures, like this dragon, in muted colors. Morris said that “the noblest of weaving arts is tapestry, in which there is nothing mechanical.” Morris’s designs borrowed from Egyptian, Byzantine, Persian and Indian textiles and patterns, in addition to being influenced by European motifs. The color scheme is low-toned and subtle, with a naturalistic green as the dominant shade. The dragons are pink and the peacocks blue.

ON VIEW in Arts & Crafts Gallery 3

Markings unmarked

Credit Line Collection Kirkland Museum of Fine & Decorative Art

Accession Number 2012.0760