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You are here: CollectionsOnline  /  [2/2] Perspective presentation drawing of a design for an enlarged hospital with a central domed hall and chapel range, datable 1695
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image SM volume 111/4

Reference number

SM volume 111/4

Purpose

[2/2] Perspective presentation drawing of a design for an enlarged hospital with a central domed hall and chapel range, datable 1695

Aspect

Bird's-eye perspective, looking south

Scale

About 24 feet to 1 inch across front elevation

Signed and dated

Undated, but datable May to September 1695

Medium and dimensions

Pen with brown and grey inks and grey washes over graphite under-drawing, with additions in graphite; ruled brown ink frame, on aid paper, reinforced on verso with modern tissue and a canvas repair strip; vertical folds in centre and in the centres of each half, allowing the sheet to be folded to half its width, opening at the centre; sheet trimmed around ruled ink frame; 478 x 695

Hand

Leonard Knyff

Verso

In pencil in a c18-19 hand, Gard

Watermark

Strasbourg Lily / 4WR; countermark: DS

Notes

Numerous differences between this and Knyff's initial perspective drawing at [2/1] indicate a revision of the design following the production of the large-scale front and side elevations at All Souls (Geraghty 2007, nos. 190-92). Wren and Hawksmoor have redesigned the transverse hall ranges that join the ends of the quadrant colonnades. On [2/1] these rectangular blocks have curve-shaped roofs and rise from the fronts of the colonnades. Now, they are set back behind loggias and raised in height by a tall balustraded attic which matches that of the King Charles II Building.

Further changes, based partly on details of the All Souls drawings and partly on the plan at [2/3], are: (1) the lowering of the pitches of roofs of the north and south pavilions of the King Charles II Building and its pendant range, and the addition of chimney stacks (reflecting the positions of chimney breasts on the plans of these pavilions in [2/3]); (2) the removal of chimney stacks to the rear roofs of the main blocks of these two buildings and the addition of stacks to the roofs of the base blocks (a correction of the first perspective); (3) the correct rendering of the applied order on the north elevations of these two buildings as three-quarter columns rather than pilasters (although the orders on their main fronts, facing the central courts, are still shown incorrectly as pilasters); (4) the addition of a second arched opening in the north-facing return elevations of the central ranges, between the outer and the inner courts, an amendment also found on the All Souls front elevation (G. 190) and on the small-scale revised front elevation at [2/4], where in both cases the two openings are square-headed rather than arched; (5) the redesign of the front embankment wall with smaller, more regular stone blocks and with a parapet of railings set on a low wall rather than a high wall without railings. Knyff has completed the background of his bird's-eye perspective without proper regard for the topography of Greenwich Park. The Royal Observatory is inaccurately drawn and placed on a hill that falls away to the east rather than continuing as an escarpment. Further east, One Tree Hill is omitted altogether.

Literature

Soane: Connoisseur & Collector, 1995, cat. no. 10; Wren Society, VI, p. 85, top

Level

Drawing

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