Helen Bower Jones has an enduring fascination for domestic textiles and their endless forms and fashions over the centuries. She was Assistant Curator, Decorative Arts at two historic houses near Leeds, UK, Temple Newsam House (Jacobean) and Lotherton Hall (Edwardian), where she worked with nationally significant collections.
Her area of focus for several years was a collection of textile fragments featuring both dress and furnishing fabrics from the mid 17th to mid 20th centuries, which she photographed, researched and catalogued . A fully illustrated catalogue was published in 2000, Textiles at Temple Newsam, the Roger Warner Collection.
She also curated a collection of costume spanning the early 18th to late 20th centuries, including designer fashion from the 1950s to 1990s by Mary Quant, Biba, Bill Gibb, Jean Muir, Zandra Rhodes, Kaffe Fassett, Vivienne Westwood and others. Read her article on the acquisition of three Vivienne Westwood ensembles for the museum.
Helen has a BA in English Literature and an MA in Museum Studies from the Univeristy of Newcastle upon Tyne, and an MA Conservation Studies (Buildings) from the University of York. She had the opportunity to study as an intern at the Victoria & Albert Museum in London and at a symposium on 18th century silks at the Abegg Stiftung, Switzerland. She served as the north of England representative on the committee of the Group for Costume & Textile Staff in Museums, UK.
18th Century Silks - The Industries of England and Northern Europe (review), text for the Study of Textile Art Design & History, Volume 29 ; 2001-2
Past and present affiliations
North Carolina Museums Council, member
North Carolina Preservation Consortium, member
The Textile Society of America, member
Orange County Arts Commission, NC, board member
Hillsborough Arts Council, NC, volunteer
Group for Costume & Textile Staff in Museums, UK