Today I visited the Royal Pavilion in Brighton. I knew I would love it, and I did. I wasn't expecting to have such a profound connection to it however and this has moved me to write.
|The ceiling of the Music room, with Lotus chandeliers that moved me to tears. More amazing photos can be found here, given one is not allowed to take photos oneself!|
The thought that struck me very early on in the tour was that people talk about Prinny creating the RP, but he didn't. He paid - or in many cases failed to pay - other people to create it for him. He never so much as stitched a stitch in a drape or gilded a cockel shell himself. He was the consumer. It reminded me of a wardrobe of designer clothes curated by a stylist - something that suits the wearer but gives them little agency in the process. No wonder he never found his "top end." Hearing his story today, I could feel an almost visceral yearning from him to create something himself, that he never sated. But I doubt it would have ever occurred to him to get stuck in and have a go. Or if it did, the urge would be immediately suppressed. Was he ever that self-aware? Who knows. Being a royal at a time when class distinction meant that any kind of manual or physical labour was not for a royal personage would put a stop to that.
|The Gallery, which is really a very posh hallway. Photo from link above.|
|The Meat kitchen, directly behind the dining room, was a state of the art space for its time - unshown is the high ceiling with windows to let out the heat, and the palm leaves at the top of the four columns.|
|This dining room, with its dragon chandeliers, is beyond words magnificent.|
|Queen Vic's bedroom with the most beautiful wallpaper. She decided to strip and sell the Pavilion as it was in the city and too exposed, and too small for her tribe of children!|
Prinny I feel for you.
I can't believe my luck in being here after the eight year restoration of the Saloon was completed.
|The Saloon as it now stands, based upon the 1823 schema.|
So many feels. In the shop at the end of my tour, I bought many, many things. Tea towels and cards and stationery mostly, because these items of paper and fabric imprinted with details from the various spaces, seem to be the closest link to the painstaking creative work gone into creating and then restoring this very special building.
Thank you Prinny you bat sh!t crazy guy, for making this pleasure dome that was never built to last; but in a city so committed to being Extra, is held close to minds and hearts and will forever be preserved.