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Drawing
  • Drawing
    Sir William Chambers, born 1723 - died 1796
  • Enlarge image

Drawing

  • Place of origin:

    Britain (probably, made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1760s. (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Sir William Chambers, born 1723 - died 1796 (artist)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Pen and ink and pencil

  • Museum number:

    7078:34

  • Gallery location:

    Prints & Drawings Study Room, level E, case A, shelf 229, box A

Full-size section and elevation of the cornice in the Library at Manresa House, Roehampton, Wandsworth by leading architect and designer Sir William Chambers (1723-1796). It was built between 1760 and 1768 or 1769, primarily to hold the Earl of Bessborough’s collection of antique sculpture. It was placed to give the appearance of an antique temple standing in a grove of trees, especially when viewed from Richmond Park, which bordered the site. The library cornice matches that now existing and is probably an office copy of a working drawing for the plasterer, and is schematic. The structure of the moulding has been set out in ink to full scale, the decoration and some small modifications having been added in pencil.

Chambers was born in Sweden and died in London. He travelled widely, visiting China, and studied architecture at the Ecole des Arts, Paris, from 1749 and in Italy from 1750 to 1755. Many of his drawings from this period are contained in his important 'Franco-Italian' album, held in the V&A. Chambers moved to London in 1755 and published his influential Treatise on Civil Architecture in 1759. Chambers demonstrated the breadth of his style in buildings such as Gower (later Carrington) House and Melbourne House, London, in such country houses as Duddingston, Scotland, and in the garden architecture he designed for Wilton House, Wiltshire, and at Kew Gardens. He became head of government building in 1782, and in this capacity built Somerset House, London.

Physical description

Full-size section and elevation of the cornice in the Library at Manresa House, Roehampton, Wandsworth. The library cornice matches that now existing and is probably an office copy of a working drawing for the plasterer, and is schematic. The structure of the moulding has been set out in ink to full scale, the decoration and some small modifications having been added in pencil.

Place of Origin

Britain (probably, made)

Date

ca. 1760s. (made)

Artist/maker

Sir William Chambers, born 1723 - died 1796 (artist)

Materials and Techniques

Pen and ink and pencil

Marks and inscriptions

'Cornice in the Library at Rowhampton 1/13 of the height of the Room.'
Inscribed in ink

Dimensions

Height: 380 mm, Width: 547 mm

Object history note

Bought from Parsons

Descriptive line

Full-size section and elevation of the cornice in the Library at Manresa House, Roehampton, Wandsworth, ca. 1760s, Sir William Chambers (1723-1796).

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Harris 1970
Snodin, M. Sir William Chambers. London: V&A Publications, 1996.

Materials

Pen and ink; Pencil

Techniques

Drawing; Painting

Subjects depicted

Elevation; Cornice; Moulding plaster; Library

Categories

Designs; Drawings; Architecture

Production Type

Design

Collection

Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

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