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image P254 North Drawing Room: west wall

Reference number

P254 North Drawing Room: west wall


Drawing made for exhibition at the Royal Academy by J.M.Gandy, 1812


15 Bird's eye view


to a scale



Signed and dated

  • n/a

Medium and dimensions

n/a Original gilt, reeded frame (matching drawing 14) l


J.M.Gandy (1771-1843)




Soane evidently commisioned Gandy to make this drawing in 1811 for exhibition at the Royal Academy in 1812 ('A view of a design for a Senate-House, from the original drawings made in Rome, in the year 1779') . The drawing shows a great parliamentary complex with a wide river beyond it and a many arched bridge ending in a crescent-shaped piazza, reminiscent of George Dance's unexecuted scheme for the Improvement of the Port of London (designed from 1796). Pictured on a cloudy day, the sun breaks through to illuminate the building while in the background beyond the river, mist veils a city that includes St Paul's. In the right-hand background are fields and woods. The only change from the original design is the addition of a detached river entrance or water gate, and a bridge. Interestingly, the drawing is made as though the building was indeed built thirty years before, with weathered roofs and columns and unkempt lawns and trees.
Drawings 15 and 16 were used in Soane's Royal Academy lecture VI Nos 52, 54 (see D.Watkin, Sir John Soane: Enlightenment thought and the Royal Academy Lectures,1996, pp.681-2).



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.

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