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image SM, volume 110/31

Reference number

SM, volume 110/31

Purpose

[4] Preliminary design for overmantel bordered by a strapwork and leatherwork with ribbon-like framing, drops of fruit and flowers and a large central cresting of floral motifs

Aspect

part-elevation

Scale

Not indicated, but about 2 feet to 1 inch

Inscribed

In ink, by George Dance, bottom right, Gd, and by C19 hand, (31)

Signed and dated

  • Undated, but datable 1689-94

Medium and dimensions

Pen and brown ink with pink, yellow ochre, grey-yellow and grey washes over graphite under-drawing, with some graphite detail and parallel line shading over the wash; on laid paper; top 55 mm has pinkish brown staining and blotching, with some erosion and cracking of paper (455 x 294)

Hand

Gibbons

Watermark

countermark: 'CL'

Notes

This may be a design for the upper part of a corner chimney breast. Locations would include the queen's closets and bedrooms at the south end of the east park front range, and the smaller rooms of the east range, facing the Fountain Court (see Geraghty 2007, Nos 209-211; AS, I.144, I.27 and I.104, where at least eight corner chimney pieces are shown on three study plans datable c. 1689-91). Gibbons has imposed his pen and wash design on a faint pencil sketch for a smaller chimney-piece, with a smaller and lower fire surround. He then concentrated on the overmantel, and in the process carried his cresting over the area originally intended for the cornice of the chimney-piece. The elaborate framing motif probably has a source in the engravings of Jean Marot or Pierre Lepautre. It consists of several linked panels of simulated leather relief, marked with stippled, fish-scale and ruled line texturing, and framed by scalloped, scrolled and intertwined ribbons, forming overlapping planes, and bordered by drops and sprays of fruit and flowers.

Literature

Wren Society, IV, pl. 28, top

Level

Drawing

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

If you have any further information about this object, please contact us: drawings@soane.org.uk

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.

Browse (via the vertical menu to the left) and search results for Drawings include a mixture of Concise catalogue records – drawn from an outline list of the collection – and fuller records where drawings have been catalogued in more detail (an ongoing process).