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Roses & Castles Art
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London Canal Museum
12-13 New Wharf Road King's Cross
London N1 9RT
United Kingdom

T: 020 7713 0836 
W: London Canal Museum web page

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Roses & Castles Art

The water cans and other examples that you can see around the museum all carry the same brightly coloured motifs of roses and castles. The origin of this folk art is unclear. One theory is that during Victorian times, boat people began to see the copies of the works of great masters, and emulated the motifs and landscapes in their own art. These themes spread in popularity among dock painters in the 1840s among narrowboat families. Roses were especially popular, and easy to paint. The art was painted on almost everything in a narrowboat cabin, from the water can to the wash basin, even on the boat's equipment.

Many examples of 'roses and castles' canal art surround the narrowboat Coronis.

Did you know?
Watch a video of artist, Tricia Parrott painting a tray with traditional the traditional roses and castles style!

Castles and large country estates would often dominate the picture panels of this folk art. However, churches, cottages, words, and portraits of dogs and sailors are occasionally featured.

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