Echoing Joseph Paxton's question at the close of the Great Exhibition, 'What is to become of the Crystal Palace?', this interdisciplinary essay collection argues that there is considerable potential in studying this unique architectural and art-historical document after 1851, when it was rebuilt in the South London suburb of Sydenham. It brings together research on objects, materials and subjects as diverse as those represented under the glass roof of the Sydenham Palace itself; from the Venus de Milo to Sheffield steel, souvenir 'peep eggs' to war memorials, portrait busts to imperial pageants, tropical plants to cartoons made by artists on the spot, copies of paintings from ancient caves in India to 1950s film. Essays do not simply catalogue and collect this eclectic congregation, but provide new ways for assessing the significance of the Sydenham Crystal Palace for both nineteenth- and twentieth-century studies. The volume will be of particular interest to researchers and students of British cultural history, museum studies, and art history. -- .
Kate Nichols is Birmingham Fellow in the Department of Art History, Curating and Visual Studies at the University of Birmingham Sarah Victoria Turner is Deputy Director for Research at the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art -- .
Foreword by Isobel Armstrong 1. 'What is to become of the Crystal Palace?' The Crystal Palace after 1851 - Kate Nichols and Sarah Victoria Turner 2. 'A present from the Crystal Palace': souvenirs of Sydenham, miniature views and material memory - Verity Hunt 3. The cosmopolitan world of Victorian portraiture: the Crystal Palace portrait gallery, c. 1854 - Jason Edwards 4. The armless artist and the lightning cartoonist: performing popular culture at the Crystal Palace c. 1900 - Ann Roberts 5. '[M]anly beauty and muscular strength': sculpture, sport and the nation at the Crystal Palace, 1854-1918 - Kate Nichols 6. From Ajanta to Sydenham: 'Indian' art at the Sydenham Palace - Sarah Victoria Turner 7. Peculiar pleasure in the ruined Crystal Palace - James Boaden 8. Dinosaurs Don't Die: the Crystal Palace monsters in children's literature, 1854-2001 - Melanie Keene 9. 'A copy - or rather a translation...with numerous sparkling emendations.' Re-rebuilding the Pompeian Court of the Crystal Palace - Shelley Hales and Nic Earle Index -- .