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20 June 2018Birds, Beasts and Box: The Art of Topiary
19 September 2018The Whole Art of the Book
17 October 2018The War to End All Wars - The Art of the First World War
21 November 2018A Potted History of Britain
05 December 2018Art Inspired by Wine

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Birds, Beasts and Box: The Art of Topiary Dr. Sophie Oosterwijk Wednesday 20 June 2018

Is topiary an art, one may wonder? Love it or hate it, topiary is certainly eye-catching. The art of creating shapes and animals out of shrubs has a long history that dates back to Roman times. At times it was the height of fashion, only to become the subject of ridicule of critics such as the poet Alexander Pope. Ultimately, topiary is laborious and costly to maintain, which is why many topiary gardens have fallen victim to neglect, yet it always manages to attract new followers. This lecture by a self-confessed topiarist from the Dutch nursery village of Boskoop aims to present the history and variety of topiary, albeit with a wink! 

Sophie Oosterwijk was born in Gouda (Netherlands). She has an MA and PhD in English Literature (Leiden), an MA in Medieval Studies (York) and a PhD in Art History (Leicester). She has taught at the universities of St Andrews, Leicester, Nottingham and Manchester, Sotheby’s Institute of Art, National Trust, V&A, U3A, WEA and other organisations, and organised many study days, tours and visits. Also a regular lecturer for Cambridge University and Martin Randall Travel, and Honorary Research Fellow with the School of Art History at the University of St Andrews. Sophie has numerous publications to her name. 

Topiary Elephants: Getty - Bob Krist