'The Triumph of Hope' exhibition

The garden at Nymans painted by Alfred Parsons

The Triumph of Hope exhibition, part of the National Trust's Women and Power programme, opens on Saturday 16 June and runs until Sunday 28 October 2018. 11am - 4pm.

" I think that the garden may fitly be described as the triumph of hope. It was always full of experiments, it gave endless pleasure, and if you walk through it, you will see the careful thought that was bestowed on each plant."
- Muriel Messel, 1918, writing in A Garden Flora
Muriel Messel
Muriel Messel
Muriel Messel

A Garden Flora

100 years since the publication of A Garden Flora, this summer’s exhibition will explore the lives of Muriel (1889-1918), Maud (1875-1960) and Anne (1902-1992) and how they influenced the garden’s design at Nymans. The exhibition celebrates their creative legacy and highlighs each of their unique contributions to the development of the garden through their correspondence and sketches.

Anne, Countess of Rosse
Anne, Countess of Rosse
Anne, Countess of Rosse

Costume

The exhibition will also show how their love for garden flora influenced other areas of their lives. From our collection we’ll be displaying Maud’s beautiful Spitalfields silk, rose bud embroidered dress. The dress was worn at a Chelsea Arts Club Ball and will be on display alongside her floral illustrated letters.

Nymans Muriel messel's sitting room
Nymans Muriel messel's sitting room
Nymans Muriel messel's sitting room

Horticultural circles

All three women were part of a wide network of horticultural friends. The exhibition will uncover their links to, among others, William Robinson, Ellen Willmott and Vita Sackville-West.

The last room of the exhibition will recreate Muriel’s sitting room from a contemporary photograph and show how she brought her love of plants and the garden at Nymans into the interior of the house.

A flower arrangement for the Celebration of Flowers annual event
A flower arrangement for the Celebration of Flowers annual event
A flower arrangement for the Celebration of Flowers annual event

Celebration of flowers

The exhibition will open with Nymans annual ‘Celebration of Flowers’, a display of floral arrangements which continues Anne’s love of bringing flowers from the garden into the house. Home to a number of plants named after Maud and Anne, the exhibition will also highlight plants in the garden associated with each gardener.