Edward Gorey’s Cabinet of Curiosities : The 2017 Edward Gorey House Exhibit


Map of Cape Cod by Consuelo Joerns, a friend of Edward Gorey, on sale in the shop

On our first return to Cape Cod in 2008, after an interval of  29 years, I discovered The Edward Gorey House and made a visit and posted my photos here. On our last Saturday of this year’s trip, after checking out of our Airbnb in Barnstable, I made a second visit to the house.


Even if you don’t recognise Gorey’s name you will probably recognise his work. There’s a fairly detailed biographical sketch of him here on the house website. He lived at the house, at Yarmouth, Massachusetts, for the last 20 years of his life. The house is jam-packed full of his stuff and there is also a barn-full next door. Most of his collection of 25,000 books are currently being catalogued and shelved at San Diego State University. His own personal art works are in Hartford, Connecticut.




A small selection of Gorey’s books is still shelved at the house


Remember The Dubonnet Queen of Ealing Common?

And see The Scavenger Hunt below : J is for James who took lye by mistake


A corner of Gorey’s kitchen

And there’s U is for Una who slipped down a drain.


These Cabinets of Curiosities seem to turn up everywhere this year


Edward Gorey never threw a ticket away

Note also the Scavenger Hunt and pencil.



Author Gorey’s own works


For younger visitors the curators of the house have devised a Scavenger Hunt for the Gashlycrumb Tinies. (See the tickets vitrine above) Well, it’s not really just for children. Anyone can join in.

I spotted :


A is for Amy who fell down the stairs


G is for George smothered under a rug

Edward Gorey House is for everyone!

Charlotte Berlin’s Museum

The first stop on our Historical Walk Through Ystad should have been at Charlotte Berlin’s Museum but when we arrived the Museum hadn’t opened so we resolved to return a bit later and reserve places on the 11 o’clock tour. This largely intact ‘mansion’ [according to the leaflet; but really it’s just a typical Ystad brightly painted, single storey house with first floor rooms in the high-pitched roof] offers an opportunity to view and gain insight into a Swedish 19th century home and its owner.

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Hammershus : Bornholm’s Dramatic Castle Ruin

The Coast South of Hammershus, 1870, by Holger Drachmann (1846-1908)

Hammershus, 1849, by Anton Edvard Kieldrup (1827-1869)

At the Art Museum we saw several paintings of Hammershus Castle. The dramatic castle ruins have attracted artists and visitors for centuries. So, the next stop on our first day’s tour itinerary was to drive to the very northern tip of the island to see the castle for ourselves.

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Gerhart Hauptmann (1862-1946) is another winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature. He was a German novelist, poet and playwright; although he was born and died in what is now Poland. I visited his former summer house on the island of Hiddensee in June.


The original gate entrance to Gerhard Hauptmann House and Garden

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Hull 2017 UK City of Culture : Bill Bailey’s Cabinet of Curiosities

Our first port of call of arrival in Hull was the newly reopened and freshly renovated Ferens Art Gallery. After coffee we visited each gallery but no photography is allowed. There’s a very good permanent collection for a provincial gallery, the Freud, Mueck, Tunick SKIN show had us mesmerised (I’d seen Muick’s Wild Man at Belsay Hall in 2010 as part of the Extraordinary Measures show) and my favourite display was Rembrandt’s The Shipbuilder and his Wife and related paintings. The Rembrandt lent by Her Majesty The Queen. Masterpieces from the Royal Collection will see five exceptional works of art travel from Windsor Castle and Buckingham Palace between 2017 and 2021 as part of a five-year partnership between the Royal Collection Trust and Ferens Art Gallery. I hope I am able to revisit during this time to see more.

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