Cape made of silk extracted from spiders to go on display
Tuesday 24 January 2012
A cape created from golden silk spun by more than a million spiders is going on display this week.
The hand-woven garment is being shown at London's Victoria and Albert Museum alongside the Golden Spider Silk, a four-metre long piece of brocaded fabric.
It took more than four years to make the items from the silk of 1.2 million female golden orb spiders, native to Madagascar.
They have been made by Englishman Simon Peers, who lives in Madagascar, and American Nicholas Godley, and are the only large textiles in the world to have been made from spider silk.
Mr Peers said: "We were keen to show the spider silk textiles at the V&A, being the most appropriate place to premiere this work in Europe.
"The unique and historic costume and textile collections have been a constant source of inspiration over the years. As far as we know the V&A has never before shown anything made from spider silk, despite its diverse collections of art and decorative arts.
"So we are pleased and very proud to be adding a first to a museum with such a rich, long and illustrious history, and would like to think that we in turn can be an inspiration to others."
Spiders are collected every morning before silk is extracted from them by trained handlers. They are not harmed in the process and are returned to the wild at the end of each day.
The last known spider silk textile was made for an exhibition in Paris in 1900 but no examples remain.
Life & Style blogs
Half of young women unable to ‘locate vagina’ and 65% find it difficult to say the word
Is Apple's iCloud safe after leak of Jennifer Lawrence and other celebrities' nude photos?
Reader dilemma: My wife only wants to have sex when she's drunk
Three quarters of the Ikea catalogue is CGI
Anal sex study reveals climate of 'coercion'
- 1 Al Pacino on suffering from depression: 'It can last and it's terrifying'
- 2 Half of young women unable to ‘locate vagina’ and 65% find it difficult to say the word
- 3 Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb
- 4 A teacher speaks out: 'I'm effectively being forced out of a career that I wanted to love'
- 5 Mexican woman becomes world’s 'oldest person' at 127
Negotiable: Randstad Education Plymouth: SEN Jobs Available Devon
£600 - £900 per day: Harrington Starr: Infrastructure Lead, (Trading infrastru...
£20000 - £21000 per annum + Training: Ashdown Group: Graduate Software Solutio...
£100 - £120 per day: Randstad Education Crawley: Supply teachers needed for va...