Explore a selection of the most outstanding examples of English Medieval embroidery. Featuring surviving examples of exquisite craftsmanship, this exhibition will focus on the artistic skill of the makers and the world in which they were created.
See the website for examples of the works to be displayed.
The Guardian and The Independent have covered the announcement of the exhibition. From The Guardian:
The V&A’s autumn exhibition Opus Anglicanum: Masterpieces of English Medieval Embroidery, will be the first in more than half a century devoted to this beautiful embroidery work, coveted by kings and popes – and for the first time in decades, the museum has dared to use Latin in an exhibition title. It means “English work”, and curator Glyn Davies said it demonstates how across Europe, people associated the dazzling skill and luxurious materials with English needle-workers.
From The Independent:
London’s Victoria & Albert Museum is to exhibit ‘surviving examples of exquisite craftsmanship’ in English Medieval embroidery, encompassing gold, silver and pearl work fit for, and indeed used by, a king.
Artifacts at Opus Anglicanum: Masterpieces of English Medieval Embroidery will include a gold lion-emblazoned silk thrown over a king’s horse and opulent slippers taken from a bishop when his tomb was opened after 600 years.
The Vatican has also provided some pieces on loan, which were commissioned by Pope Innocent IV after he coveted the regal garments being worn by English bishops.
The context that's missing--perhaps assumed--from both of the stories, which seem to be aimed at making sure readers understand the use of Latin in the exhibition title, is that much of this work was created for the celebration of Holy Mass and other Catholic sacraments. I'm sure, from the V&A description, promising the dual focus on the creativity of the English artisans and the "world in which [the works] were created", that the omission will be corrected. An older page about embroidery in England may be accessed here.