A very informative and successful Glove Network virtual seminar was held on Friday 1 May with the participation of 14 experts in their field – including one member from as far away as Australia.
Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the seminar, which was originally planned to be hosted in Worcester by David Nash, Curator of Social History at Museums Worcestershire, was changed to an online meeting. This enabled the network, who have a shared interest in his area of research, to continue the momentum and enthusiasm generated at the first seminar in March.
Experts in the field of leather and gloves enjoyed presentations by museum curators, academic researchers, historians and representatives of the Glovers’ Livery. This was followed by a lively discussion by all.
A range of topics were addressed, including the ways in which glove culture can and has been interpreted throughout history, such as gender and the glove; the materials, design and making process; the consumption and symbolic wearing of gloves, and their afterlife.
This led us onto the gloves and glove making tools and memorabilia that exist in several museum collections, and what we can learn from them.
We'll be hearing more in the blog soon from Museums Worcestershire about their exciting Robert Ring archive, the peak and fall of a great and historic industry in that area, and its impact on the communities of glovers.
The Glove Network is proving its worth as a forum for communication within a small research community who had previously never met. It is excellent to hear positive feedback from the participants in recognition that the potential connections and outcomes are proving useful in many more ways than any of us had imagined.