Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Its a beauty

In the fall last year I wrote about a room designed by Veere Grenney in a Lutyens house - a room I found and still find astonishingly beautiful. That said, an irritating aspect of the photograph was that I couldn't see enough of what seemed to be a wonderful fireplace.

Well, in looking through my Lutyens book again today, I found a picture of a fireplace I thought I recognized. If the house unnamed in the October 2009 issue of WoI is Overstrand Hall in Norfolk then this is the fireplace I couldn't see well and a beauty it is. The book's author, describes the fireplace as "one of the most extraordinary Lutyens ever designed, a Mannerist composition of niches, concavities and attenuated corbel brackets."

There are differences between the two photos - where the fireplace meets the ceiling and the floor, which could be explained by changes made through the years by successive owners but essentially it's the same design.

Photo from Edwin Lutyens Country Houses: from the Archives of Country Life, Gavin Stamp, Aurum Press 2001.


  1. i love how time has flown through a room, a home, over a piece of furniture. and to see how other people, throughout time, have treated and used a room. the feel is so different from these two pictures. even though same design, they just really feel different.

  2. I'm was little intimidated by the fireplace alone. I was quickly cured by seeing in the furnished room, what a room.

  3. That is gorgeous- I love the placement of everything- reproducing that-I can hear such complaints, what happened to the craftsman anyway? G

  4. A gorgeous fireplace indeed. One would think that it would have warranted a detail shot in WoI. At least we have your sharp mind to thank for finding a decent photo of it.

  5. Soodie - the ever-changing aesthetic from one generation to another. See the post about Deanery Garden.

    Terry - I agree, what a room!

    Little Augury - I'm playing devil's advocate here when I ask why one would pay for hand carving when there is molded urethane or machined wood?

    The Peak of Chic - I sometimes don't understand the cropping of photos that occurs. There are a few more photos still I want to post.

  6. Hi,

    I have always liked Lutyens' work, and Berrydown Court has long been a favourite since I first encountered it in Roderick Gradidge's 'Dream Houses: the Edwardian Ideal.'

    You can find Internal Elevations of the fireplace you are talking about on Basingstoke and Dean Council:

    If you type 'Berrydown Court' in the 'search by address' window you will find the public records of the Planning Applications for works done on the house in the last couple of years, including plans and elevations, etc.

    An architect in Dublin.

  7. Anonymous - Architect in Dublin. I am grateful for this information and later today will be able to search as you suggest. Thank you.

    Would that be Dublin, Ireland?

  8. What a delicious find. A birthday present.