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WILLIAM MORRIS (1834-96), an artist from the Victorian Age.

William Morris is England's best known designer, manufacturer and retailer of textiles. He is remembered as a designer, businessman, a decorator, poet, a prolific writer, radical socialist and a conservationist.

He was engaged in painting, church decoration and stained glass, domestic decoration, design of furniture, tiles and tableware, hand-printed wallpaper, textiles, calligraphical masterpieces and in his mid-fifties he became a printer and publisher with his own private press, The Kelmscott Press.

From the middle 1870s for one decade Morris's energies were focussed upon textiles: dyeing, block-printing and weaving. He produced printed and woven textiles, machine-woven carpets and embroideries. His designs, even today, proved to be very popular.

He explored vegetable dyes 'taking in dyeing at every pore', rising at dawn every day to work on weaving. Between 1875 and 1885 Morris produced thirty-two designs for printed fabrics, twenty-three for woven fabrics, twenty-one for wall-papers, as well as designs for carpets, rugs, embroideries and tapestries. At this period his productivity approached frenzy.

Morris designed magnificent decorative patterns and objects. He undoubtedly was a highly hyperactive person who went from one activity to another and yet he managed to achieve wonderful things in his life.


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