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The Mourning Weight


Artwork and Contemporary Jewellery were created by Central Saint Martins students in response to the history of the Foundling Hospital, founded in 1739. Selected works were exhibited amongst the museum's permanent collection in an exhibition titled 'Unpinned'. 

'The Mourning Weight' is a response to the emotions felt by the children who were taken in by the hospital and their mothers who gave them up; in most cases on a voluntary basis but usually as a result of extreme poverty.


The piece takes its form from the Foundling's uniform, and is a visual representation of a mother and child mourning one another. The physical weight of the materials aim to emphasise the weight of pain experienced in these traumatic circumstances, fading into pearls, which in the Victorian era represented the loss of a child.  

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