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Her House

  • Object:

    Architectural drawing

  • Place of origin:

    Great Britain (made)

  • Date:

    1959 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Prizeman, John, born 1930 - died 1992 (artist)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Pen and ink and Letratone on paper

  • Credit Line:

    Given by the artist

  • Museum number:

    E.1135-1979

  • Gallery location:

    Prints & Drawings Study Room, level F, case EDUC, shelf 10B

This drawing is by the British architect John Prizeman. It was made to illustrate an article about housing that appeared in the 'Daily Express' newspaper in October 1959. The imaginary house was designed to be economical in terms of both space and cost. This saving is achieved by enclosing all the accommodation within a tight rectangular ground plan, bound by walls that are shared with three adjacent properties. Light, air and safe play areas are provided by two courtyard gardens. Prizeman has opted for an axonometric projection, a type of scale drawing particularly suitable for showing the insides of buildings from above. The viewer has the sense that he or she is peering into a box and, given the contained nature of the architecture, this must be intentional. Although small, the house is not mean. There is plenty of room for modern goods and fashionable features. Prizeman populates the drawing with a television, contemporary furniture, a fitted kitchen, large windows and a recently launched ‘Mini’ in the garage. He completes the scene with a lounging father, busy mother, contented children and pet cat.

Physical description

Bird's eye architect's view of a house, garden and garage, enclosed within a rectangle. In pencil, pen and ink, correction fluid and Letratone on paper. Rooms are identified with printed labels. Corrections have been made by scratching away the surface of the paper and with correction fluid.

Place of Origin

Great Britain (made)

Date

1959 (made)

Artist/maker

Prizeman, John, born 1930 - died 1992 (artist)

Materials and Techniques

Pen and ink and Letratone on paper

Marks and inscriptions

John B Prizeman.
Bottom left; Handwriting; Pen and ink; Prizeman; 1959

HER HOUSE - published Daily Express, Thursday, 15th October, 1959
Bottom right; Handwriting; Pen and ink; Prizeman

Rooms are labelled variously

Dimensions

Height: 42 cm, Width: 59.3 cm

Object history note

Drawn for publication in 'The Daily Express'; 19 October 1959

Historical context note

The house was designed within space limits of 1,070 square feet and cost limits of £3,000. It was grouped around two patios, one a secluded adult's area, and the other a space for children to play. The two long blank walls were party walls with similar houses, and most of the light came from continuous glazing round the patios. [From Print Room catalogue]

Descriptive line

Architectural drawing, 'Her House', designer John Prizeman, 1959

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

Stephen Astley, 'British Design at Home', p.147

Labels and date

This drawing is by the architect John Prizeman and was made to illustrate a newspaper article about economical housing in 1959. By bringing the garden inside, he made significant cost and space savings. The two courtyard gardens meet the inhabitants' need for daylight and ventilation, and offer areas for safe play and relaxation. But this layout also means that identical houses can be built to the back and to the side, thus increasing urban density and reducing building costs where the walls are shared. [2005]

Materials

Ink; Letratone; Paper; White correction fluid; Pencil

Techniques

Drawing

Subjects depicted

Architecture; Children; Gender issues; Automobiles; Houses; Minimum dwelling; Family; Family life; Consumerism; Gardens; Patios; Childcare; Housework; Televisions; Play

Categories

Feminism; Gardens & Gardening; Dolls & Toys; Household objects; Transport; Marriage; ELISE; Architecture; Designs; Interiors

Collection

Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

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