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Last of the tall ships exhibition at National Maritime Museum Cornwall

By AliceWright  |  Posted: February 07, 2013

  • Elisabeth Jacobsen and crew on the bowsprit, March – June 1933, Parma. Alan Villiers Collection, National Maritime Museum, London.

  • Crew at the capstan, weighing anchor, 1932–3 Parma. Alan Villiers Collection, National Maritime Museum, London.

  • ‘Moses’ and Elisabeth Jacobsen on the forecastle in fine weather, March-June 1933, Parma. Alan Villiers Collection, National Maritime Museum, London.

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A new exhibition at the National Maritime Museum Cornwall in Falmouth will feature striking images recording life aboard historic tall ships, along with artefacts and archive film footage. 

The photos were taken by sailor, author and photographer Alan Villiers. They were captured between 1928 and 1933 when Mr Villiers was part owner of the four-masted barque Parma. 

The exhibition, entitled Last of the Tall Ships, records early 20th century maritime history, when merchant sailing vessels were in rapid decline, and provide a vivid and often intimate snapshot of life and work on board these romantic vessels. 

Exhibitions Manager Ben Lumby said: "We are delighted to be able to bring to Cornwall this touring exhibition from Royal Museums Greenwich.  

"As well as the stunning black and white photography, we have been fortunate enough to be able to enrich this exhibition with personal objects and archive film footage on loan from the Villiers family.  These include cameras used by Villiers, a letter to his mother and film footage from a number of his square-rigged voyages.  

"We are extremely grateful to the Villiers family for loaning us these objects which bring another dimension to his spellbinding images."

The exhibition Last of the Tall Ships: photographs by Alan Villiers (1903-1982) opens at the National Maritime Museum Cornwall in Falmouth on February 13 and runs until July 8.  

For more information visit www.nmmc.co.uk or call 01326 313388.

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