EU shipping is temporarily suspended

The Beauty of Life

William Morris & the Art of Design

Diane Waggoner

Out of stock


A collection of essays reflecting on William Morris the man, and his work within Morris & Co.


William Morris was a man of tremendous energies, his accomplishments astonishing in their range and depth. He became successively a poet, embroiderer, pattern designer, calligrapher, dyer, weaver, translator, architectural preservationist, socialist, and book publisher and printer. As the head of the internationally successful Morris & Company, he devoted himself to the decorative arts. His influence was wide and long-lasting, on both sides of the Atlantic.

In this book William Morris the man, and ‘The Firm’, are considered by Pat Kirkham, of the Bard Graduate Center for Studies in the Decorative Arts, Design, and Culture in New York. British design after Morris is surveyed by Gillian Naylor, an established authority on nineteenth- and twentieth-century design and Edward R. Bosley, Director of the Gamble House in Pasadena, California, looks at Morris and American Arts and Crafts. These essays frame detailed studies by Diane Waggoner of Morris’s stained glass, interior decoration designs and book publishing ventures, and of his successor at Morris & Company, J. H. Dearle.

The Beauty of Life draws upon the rich holdings of The Huntington Library, Art Collections and Botanical Gardens in San Marino, California, which with the recent acquisition of a major William Morris collection, including fine printed books and the archive of Morris & Company, has become one of the outstanding centres for Morris study in the world.

Read More


'This collection of expert essays is vivid in scholarship and visual stimulation'
The Times

Product Information

Book Details

Format: Paperback

Size: 28.0 x 21.6 cm

Extent: 176 pp

Publication date: 27 October 2003

ISBN: 9780500284346

About the Author

Pat Kirkam has been Professor at The Bard Graduate Center for Studies in the Decorative Arts, Design and Culture since 1996. In 2004 she became Visiting Professor at Kingston University at the Centre for the Study of the Modern Interior.

Diane Waggoner is curator of 19th-century Photographs in the Department of Photography at the National Gallery of Art, Washington.

List of Contributors

Pat Kirkham, Gillian Naylor, Edward R. Bosley, Diane Waggoner

Related Topics