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Details: inside the card
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Details: text in card

A hunting scene

Object number: ROMGH.1998.139.10

Type: Greetings card

Technique: Commercially printed

Material: Card

Width: 10cm | Height: 14.4cm

Production date: 1946 - 1952

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Use the same Celtic patterns in your art and craft work Yes
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We know when Bain designed this Christmas greetings card because he mentions Drumnadrochit. In 1946, on retiring from teaching, he moved to the village for a few years. It was his wife’s family home and he tried to establish a College of Celtic Cultures there. It seems that he engaged with local pupils at Inverness Academy to obtain Gaelic translations of his texts.

The knotwork entangles hunting imagery. The stag, boar, hunting dogs, horse and rider were favourite motifs of Bain. He used them in his design for a ‘hunting’ rug for Quayle and Tranter Ltd, carpet manufacturers in Kidderminster, Worcestershire. They’re also included in designs for items such as the final dinner menu for the International Pen Congress in Edinburgh in 1950.

Inside the card is his own explanation of the background to the design. It holds good today. ‘The huntsman and other symbols of the chase were favourites of the Celtic peoples, portraying not only the fearless qualities but also the questing spirit of enquiry and aspiration that lies at the roots of art and religion …‘

See Bain's Celtic Art, Methods of Construction page 141 Plate 10

Author: Alastair Morton

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