London. Aurum Press. 2010. First edition. Hardback, dust jacket. 192 pages. Over 150 colour and b&w photographs. 310 x 260mm (12¼ x 10¼"). 1.95kg. 9781845135935. English. Near fine; lightly bumped on lower forecorners, no tears or inscriptions, not price-clipped.
'In The Classical Country House architectural historian David Watkin takes a fresh and innovative look at the traditional British country house and shows how Classicism has been a seminal influence on British architecture since the seventeenth century...
The book consists of five parts. The first looks at the birth of English Classicism in the seventeenth century, when houses such as Wilton House in Wiltshire (where Jones and John Webb designed the celebrated Double Cube Room) and Coleshill in Berkshire, reflect a rejection of contemporary styles in favour of a Renaissance-influenced design. The second part shows how the flowering of Classic design in the eighteenth century led to the creation of some of the most celebrated houses of the period: Chiswick House, Holkham Hall, Sir John Soane's Pitzhanger Manor, and the Grecian templar house, Grange Park.
The third part recounts how the austerity of many buildings designed in the 18th century gave way to the richer styles of the Italian Renaissance Revival in the 19th century – seen, for example, in Kingston Lacy, Dorset and Brodsworth Hall, Yorkshire. The final two chapters, on the twentieth century and beyond, reveal how even as individual an architect as Sir Edwin Lutyens immersed himself in a Classical language of design, in houses as diverse as Nashdom, Gledstone and the British Embassy in Washington D.C; and how, as the influence of Modernist design has waned, Classical styles have been revived – most notably in the houses of Raymond Erith after the Second World War, and more recently by architects such as Quinlan Terry.
David Watkin has selected over 150 of the finest images from the Country Life archive to illustrate an incisive study of 26 major houses and their architects.' (from the publisher's description).
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