Online Lecture: Outstanding Stories: Victorian Relief Decorations, A Lecture by Jo Banham


Online Autumn Lecture Series

Crossing Boundaries: Victorian art, Design and Architecture

We are used to the idea of Victorian architecture, art and design as separate disciplines, with their own historians. But that seriously misrepresents the way that many nineteenth-century architects and designers thought and practiced. They conceived of the fine and decorative arts as part of an architectural whole – a total work of art.

These lectures will boldly break down disciplinary boundaries in a discussion of the use of colour and texture across the whole range of Victorian design and analyses of the important roles played by mosaic, stained glass, embroidery and three-dimensional wall coverings.

Outstanding Stories: Victorian Relief Decorations by Jo Banham

Tue 29 October, 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm

The final quarter of the 19th century witnessed the development of many new products in the wallpaper industry. Chief among these were relief decorations like Lincrusta Walton, Anaglypta and Japanese Leather Papers that perfectly imitated the appearance of materials such as wood, plaster and embossed leather.

Acclaimed for their artistry and ingenuity, these products were not only extremely hard-wearing but also lent themselves to a wide variety of historical and modern styles. They were both fashionable and hugely popular and were used in many thousands of settings that ranged from domestic interiors, to public buildings, to railways carriages and ocean liners.

This talk explores the history, design and production of these innovative but still under-rated wall-coverings.


Jo Banham has written on many aspects of late 19th and early 20th century interior decoration. She is currently research a book on the history of wallpaper to be published in autumn 2025.

All attendees will be sent a recording of the talk.

Image: Rottmann, Strome & Co, Japanese Leather, 1890

Ticket Price: £6
Date: October 29th, 2024
Time: 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm