The Sea Blazed Gold | Louisa Albani

Virginia Woolf’s childhood summer holidays spent at Talland House in St Ives not only gifted her vivid memories of the unique spirit of Cornwall – its ancient lands, wild coastal paths and mesmerising light – but also inspired her to write her masterpiece novel ​To the Lighthouse.

Using excerpts from Woolf’s diaries, letters and novels, interwoven with my own artworks, this pamphlet celebrates her time in St Ives and the impact it had on her life.

With contributions by writer Astra Bloom and Maggie Humm, who led the campaign for a Talland House plaque commemorating Woolf’s life there.

The World of Virginia Woolf

1000-PIECE PUZZLE that makes a perfect gift for fans of Virginia Woolf and her work.

INCLUDES A PULL-OUT POSTER so you can spot all the characters and read their stories.

Piece together the world of Virginia Woolf and the Bloomsbury Group, finding a host of famous characters both real and fictional along the way. From the beaches of Cornwall to the streets of Bloomsbury and from Hogarth House to the colleges of Cambridge, spot Leonard Woolf, Clive and Vanessa Bell and Vita Sackville-West, along with Clarissa Dalloway, Orlando and the Ramsay family. Plus, discover the places that formed Woolf’s character and inspired her pioneering books that helped shape our understanding of modernity.

Virginia Woolf | Nigel Nicolson

Virginia Woolf was undoubtedly one of the literary giants of the twentieth century. She was a central figure in the Bloomsbury Group, and her writings were works of astonishing originality.

Nigel Nicolson is the son of Vita Sackville-West, who was Virginia Woolf’s most intimate friend, and for a short time her lover. He spent many days in her company and he has threaded his recollections of her throughout this unique narrative of her life.

To The Lighthouse | Virginia Woolf

This novel’s fame as an icon of twentieth-century literature rests primarily on the brilliance of its narrative technique and the impressionistic beauty of its prose, but To the Lighthouse is above all the story of a quest.

Observed across the years at their vacation house on the Isle of Skye, facing the gales of the North Atlantic, Mrs. Ramsay and her family seek to recapture meaning from the flux of things and the passage of time. Though it is the death of Mrs. Ramsay on which the novel turns, her presence pervades every page in a poetic evocation of loss and memory that is also a celebration of domestic life and its most intimate details. Virginia Woolf’s great book enacts a powerful allegory of the creative consciousness and its momentary triumphs over fleeting material life. 

Talland House | Maggie Humm

Royal Academy, London 1919: Lily has put her student days in St. Ives, Cornwall, behind her-a time when her substitute mother, Mrs. Ramsay, seemingly disliked Lily’s portrait of her and Louis Grier, her tutor, never seduced her as she hoped he would.

In the years since, she’s been a suffragette and a nurse in WWI, and now she’s a successful artist with a painting displayed at the Royal Academy. Then Louis appears at the exhibition with the news that Mrs. Ramsay has died under suspicious circumstances.

Talking to Louis, Lily realizes two things: 1) she must find out more about her beloved Mrs. Ramsay’s death (and her sometimes-violent husband, Mr. Ramsay), and 2) She still loves Louis.

Set between 1900 and 1919 in picturesque Cornwall and war-blasted London, Talland House takes Lily Briscoe from the pages of Virginia Woolf’s To the Lighthouse and tells her story outside the confines of Woolf’s novel-as a student in 1900, as a young woman becoming a professional artist, her loves and friendships, mourning her dead mother, and solving the mystery of her friend Mrs. Ramsay’s sudden death.

How Should One Read A Book? | Virgina Woolf

“Look, these need no reward. We have nothing to give them here. They have loved reading.”

First delivered as a speech to schoolgirls in Kent in 1926, this enchanting short essay by the towering Modernist writer Virginia Woolf celebrates the importance of the written word.

With a measured but ardent tone, Woolf weaves together thought and quote, verse and prose into a moving tract on the power literature can have over its reader, in a way which still resounds with truth today. I have sometimes dreamt, at least, that when the Day of Judgement dawns and the great conquerors and lawyers and statesmen come to receive their rewards – their crowns, their laurels, their names carved indelibly upon imperishable marble – the Almighty will turn to Peter and will say, not without a certain envy when he sees us coming with our books under our arms,

Mrs Dalloway | Virginia Woolf

Virginia Woolf’s Mrs. Dalloway, first published in 1925, examines one day in the life of Clarissa Dalloway, an upper-class Londoner married to a member of Parliament. The novel addresses the nature of time in personal experience through multiple stories, particularly that of Clarissa, as she prepares for and hosts a party, and that of the World War I veteran Septimus Warren Smith, who suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder. The novel is widely considered to be a groundbreaking work of twentieth-century literary fiction.

The narrative begins and ends with Clarissa as it details a day in her life. Clarissa is a seemingly disillusioned socialite whose mood fluctuates: at some moments she seems delighted, at others she seems depressed. Her overall affect suggests suppressed symptoms of depression.

Mrs. Dalloway begins with Clarissa’s preparatory errand to buy flowers. Unexpected events occur-a car emits an explosive noise and a plane writes in the sky-and incite different reactions in different people. Soon after she returns home, her former lover Peter arrives. The two converse, and it becomes clear that they still have strong feelings for each other.

Virginia Woolf | Art, Life and Vision

Throughout her life, Woolf, a sharp observer and a brilliant wordsmith, composed memorable vignettes-in-words of people she knew or encountered, and was herself portrayed by artists and photographers on many occasions.

Illustrated with over a hundred works from public and private collections, documentary photographs and extracts from her writings, this book catches Woolf’s appearance and that of the world around her. It also points to her pursuit of the hidden, the fleeting and the obscure, in her desire to understand better the place and moment in time and in history in which she lived. In charting some of the milestones in Woolf’s life, author Frances Spalding acknowledges the seen and unseen aspects of her subject; the outer and the inner, the recognisable and the concealed.

Street Haunting | Virginia Woolf

The hour should be evening and the season winter, for in winter the champagne brightness of the air and the sociability of the streets are grateful’. In such conditions, Virginia Woolf takes to London’s streets in search of a pencil. The account of her journey – the people, the places, the pleasure – soon becomes one of the great paeans to city life.

Virginia Woolf & Vanessa Bell | Marion Whybrow

Virginia Woolf and her sister Vanessa Bell are perhaps the best-known female icons of English art in the early twentieth century. Marion Whybrow provides a valuable insight into the family life of the Stephen sisters, and into St Ives itself, a fishing port and artists’ colony on ‘the toe-nail of England’.