bmi coat arms

The Midlands Japanned Tin and Papier Mache

Industry of the 18th and 19th centuries

Yvonne Jones, former Head of Wolverhampton Arts and Museums and author of the recently published book Japanned Papier Mache and Tinware  c1740-1940

Brendan Flynn, a free-lance curator and lecturer who was Senior Curator of Visual Art at Wolverhampton Art Gallery and recently retired as Curator of Fine Art at Birmingham Museums and Art Gallery.

japanned work mike rendell photoMere Tray-painters?  The artisan painters of the 18th and 19th centuries are often dismissed as mere decorators earning their livings at the lower end of the art trade. Many were highly skilled and mastered the art of integrating the painted image with the varied forms and functions of japanned ware, from trays to items of domestic furniture. This lecture examines the products of some of these “work -a-day” artists and a few of those who progressed to academic status.

Local links include: 18th century, John Baskerville opened a japanned tin-ware factory in Birmingham and Henry Clay, a Birmingham business man who had possibly been apprenticed to John Baskerville, patented a method of pasting paper in sheets, leaving them to be stoved, oiled with linseed oil, shaped, worked and later decorated and varnished. It was used in a huge array of products – from decorative side panels in carriages, through to small items of furniture, boxes etc.       

            (Course: 10am-6pm – fee £28.00 to include refreshments)

Application for tickets should be made to Miss Kyprianou and accompanied by a cheque made payable to Birmingham and Midland Institute, 9 Margaret Street, Birmingham, B3 3BS and enclose SAE.

For more detail see