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image Adam vol.55/12

Reference number

Adam vol.55/12

Purpose

Capriccio showing part of the elevation of a building with circular arcaded tower and spire above a three-bay recessed centre court, between pedimented wings with shallow domes and obelisks. To the right is a wing of six-bays with a plain attic. Above this is drawn a three-storied domed pavilion with a curved three-bay centre.

Aspect

Elevation

Inscribed

Inscribed in ink on drawing 12

Signed and dated

Undated, probably 1755 - 56

Medium and dimensions

Pencil, pen, brown wash308 x 202, trimmed along right hand side

Hand

Robert Adam

Watermark

crown with grapes

Notes

There is a similar tower in the composition in Adam vol.55/22; see also the study for a tower in Gothic style in Adam vol.55/24. The apparent asymmetry of the elevation is probably not intended, but rather the result of the trimming of this sheet when it was mounted in the album. The pencil overdrawing suggests a large composition, with possibly three stories and curving centre, recalling the style of the drawing in Adam vol.55/49, which itself looks towards the vast palace scheme shown in Adam vol.28/1.

Level

Drawing

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Sir John Soane's collection includes some 30,000 architectural, design and topographical drawings which is a very important resource for scholars worldwide. His was the first architect’s collection to attempt to preserve the best in design for the architectural profession in the future, and it did so by assembling as exemplars surviving drawings by great Renaissance masters and by the leading architects in Britain in the 17th and 18th centuries and his near contemporaries such as Sir William Chambers, Robert Adam and George Dance the Younger. These drawings sit side by side with 9,000 drawings in Soane’s own hand or those of the pupils in his office, covering his early work as a student, his time in Italy and the drawings produced in the course of his architectural practice from 1780 until the 1830s.

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