William Morris Society Statement of Purpose
The life, work, and ideas of William Morris are as important today as they were in his lifetime.The three affiliated William Morris Societies in the US, the UK, and in Canada exist to make them as widely known as possible. The many-sidedness of Morris and the variety of his activities bring together in the Society those who are interested in him as designer, craftsman, businessman, poet, preservationist, environmental pioneer and socialist, or who admire his robust and generous personality and his creative energy and courage. Morris aimed for a state of affairs in which all might enjoy the potential richness of human life. His thought on how we might live, on creative work, leisure and machinery, on ecology and conservation, on the place of the arts in our lives and their relation to politics, as on much else, remains as challenging now as it was a century ago. He provides a focus for those who deplore the progressive dehumanization of the world in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries and who believe, like him, that the trend is not inevitable
The William Morris Society in the United States
Founded in 1971, the William Morris Society in the United States maintains close ties with our UK counterpart. We sponsor a semi-annual Newsletter, one or more annual fellowships, academic sessions at the Modern Language Association Annual Convention and elsewhere, and, when possible, social gatherings, lectures and trips to museums, exhibitions, and other sites of Morris, Pre-Raphaelite, Victorian, and Arts and Crafts interest.
Members of the William Morris Society in the United States automatically become members of the William Morris Society UK and receive the UK Newsletter and biannual Journal of William Morris Studies. In 2010, the Society helped organize the major conference, "Useful & Beautiful: The Transatlantic Arts of William Morris and the Pre-Raphaelites," held at the University of Delaware, Winterthur Museum & Country Estate, and Delaware Art Museum.
The William Morris Society in the United Kingdom
The Society, founded in 1955, provides information on topics of interest to its members and arranges lectures, education programs, visits, exhibitions, and other activities. It encourages the reprinting of his works and the continued manufacture of his textile and wallpaper designs. It publishes a Journal twice a year, free to members, which carries articles across the field of Morris scholarship. It also publishes a quarterly Newsletter giving details of its programme, new publications and other matters of interest concerning Morris and his circle. Members are invited to contribute to the Journal and the Newsletter. Regular events in the UK include a Kelmscott Lecture, a birthday party held in March, and visits to exhibitions and such places as the William Morris Gallery, Red House, Kelmscott Manor, and Standen. These visits, our tours and our short residential study courses, enable members living abroad or outside London to participate in the Society's activities. In addition, the Society sponosrs education programs for school groups and maintains a collection of books, textiles, and other materials relating to Morris at its headquarters at Kelmscott House. The Society also has local groups in various parts of Britain and affiliations with the William Morris Society in the United States and the William Morris Society of Canada. For more information visit the William Morris Society UK Kelmscott House website.
The William Morris Society of Canada
Founded in 1981, The William Morris Society of Canada holds regular meetings in Toronto and other locations. Activities include lectures, an annual conference, social affairs, and visits to architecturally interesting buildings. This Society maintains its own website.