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image Image 1 for SM 8/3/38
image Image 2 for SM 8/3/38
  • image Image 1 for SM 8/3/38
  • image Image 2 for SM 8/3/38

Reference number

SM 8/3/38

Purpose

Unfinished presentation design for kitchen garden and surrounding landscape, with pinery designed by Robert Baldwin, c.1784

Aspect

32 (pencil) A Plan for an elegant / Fruit & Kitchen Garden with a design / of a Vinery (sic, in fact a pinery) for the Honble Adm.l Rowley / at his Seat Tendering (sic) Hall Suffolk

Scale

bar scales of 1/26 inch to one foot and 1/5 inch to one foot (approximately)

Inscribed

as above, (pencil) Reference / A The Pinery B the old Tower / C a Bason of Soft Water / D The Entrance into the Pheasantry / E The Melon ground F Rooms for the Gardener / G A Seat in rising Grove Viz a View into the Pheasantry / H Theatrical (sic) Plantations upon the Banks of the Garden / I Walks from the new House to the Garden and (pinery) The Elevation of the front of the Pinery shewing in part / the framing & in parts with the Lights (glass) on ......, Back Shead (sic), Plan of the Pinery, The Elevation of one end when finished, The Cross Section

Medium and dimensions

Pen, coloured washes, shaded, hatching, some watercolour technique, pencil on laid paper (709 x 525)

Hand

Robert Baldwin (fl. 1762-c.1804)

Watermark

J Whatman, fleur-de-lis within crowned cartouche and below, ornate W

Notes

Detached from the house and in a setting of trees with 'Walks from the new House to the Garden', the fruit and vegetable garden is laid out symmetrically about a central axis with only 'B the old Tower' and 'C a Bason of soft Water' off-centre. The overall plan is square with quadrant corners instead of the severely rectangular 360 x 180 of drawings 9 and 30. This garden measures 280 x 250 feet within the walls and there are two building on axis - the pinery and a large building with the same plan as the garden (square with quadrant corners) that is unlabelled save for 'F Rooms for the Gardener'. This must be a greenhouse divided into nine compartments. The drawing is carefully - even laboriously - made with planting beds indicated by dots variously arranged. A multitude of deciduous and coniferous trees, each with its own shadow, is drawn on the outside of the garden wall and labelled 'H Theatrical Plantations upon the Banks of the Garden'. The overall design is an extravagant one, costly to build and maintain. For example, the pinery has two chimneys when the usual method of growing pineapples was to plunge them into a lean-to-pit with a nearly flat roof, the pit filled with fermenting bark or something similar to provide warmth. However, the design that follows for a hot house (drawing 33) is very close to this design for a pinery and moreover contains pinepapples. The drawing is attributed to Robert Baldwin (fl. 1762-c.1804) on the evidence of handwriting, draughtsmanship and palette. The design is attributed to Baldwin on the grounds that Soane was unlikely to have engaged with such an elaborate design for a vegetable garden and he would not have had the time nor the experience. Baldwin, who was Soane's ad hoc draughtsman at this time, may have wished to earn a few more guineas with an unsolicited design. The somewhat florid text, still in pencil, might suggest that his drawing was rejected by Soane. The designs for a hot house and for a greenhouse that follow are probably more what Admiral Rowley had in mind.

Level

Drawing

Digitisation of the Drawings Collection has been made possible through the generosity of the Leon Levy Foundation

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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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