Various artists/makers

Not on view

John Dearle joined Morris & Company in 1878 as a shop assistant, became a skilled weaver and proved an invaluable manager. By the late 1880s, he was designing wallpaper patterns. Initially, these were strongly influenced by Morris's style, but then grew more distinctive. "Blackthorne" combines common hawthorne–small white flowers that spring from thorny mauve branches–with daisies, tulips and other blossoms, set amidst green leaves and over a dark ground. The symmetry along a central vertical axis echoes the company's textile patterns–when designing wallpapers, Morris himself generally used diagonal meanders.

Blackthorn, John Henry Dearle (British, London 1859–1932 Purley, Surrey), Block-printed in distemper colors

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