Studio: international art — 28.1903

Page: 249
DOI issue: DOI article: DOI article: DOI Page: Citation link:
License: Free access  - all rights reserved Use / Order
1 cm
Architecture at the Arts and Crafts Exhibition

for each was a bit of his life, a fragment of his
heart; and his dream would have been to get them
all back from their various homes, to see them all
collected around him, to review in them his life,
so long in achievement and experience, so young
and fresh right to the very end in heart and brain.

It has been arranged to hold in London, in the
course of 1904, an important exhibition of all the
pictures and studies left by Costa.

Olivia Rossetti Agresti.


When an illustrated magazine deals fairly and
well with' the arts of the present day, it serves
a more useful purpose than any exhibition of
modern work, for it is open all the year, and the
international contents change month by month.
It is at once a book and a permanent exhibition.

The value of such a magazine to all classes of
art-workers may be hard to estimate, but a good
idea of it may be formed by anyone who remembers
what Turner owed to the engravers whom he
trained. Ruskin did much for Turner, but the
engravers did even more; they were the first
interpreters of Turner's genius, and their prints
passed at once into many thousands of homes, and
there made converts to good taste. At the present
time, thanks to the discovery of photo-engraving,
the effective ways of reproducing good work in
black-and-white illustrations are more rapid and
much cheaper than in Turner's day, so that the
arts may now be brought to the notice of the
general public in magazines which cost less than a
two-mile drive in a London cab.

It may be that architecture is the art that stands
most in need of such magazines, partly because the
designs of architects attract but little attention in
the public galleries, and partly because the majority
of periodicals dealing exclusively with such designs
are often too technical to have a very wide circula-
tion amongst the general public. The average
person does not understand a working drawing,
and the elevations of a house to be built are less
attractive to him than some good photographs of a
completed scheme of work. He has often a great
wish to see how the house looks when finished,
how the garden is treated in relation to the house ;
and, again, in what way the rooms are furnished
and decorated—and these important things are
made intelligible to him by photographs.

In brief, the average person does not care two

straws for architectural designs and working draw-
ings. He wants to see completed homes. These
interest him always, and he feels sure that the
Royal Academy does harm to domestic architecture
by allotting insufficient space to photographs of the
best houses built during the year.

It is pleasant to note here that the Arts and
Crafts Society has given attention to this question
of the uses of photography, and in its last exhibi-
tion place was found for some good prints of archi-
tectural and decorative subjects. This was a step
in the right direction, but a much larger number of
such useful photographs might have been chosen,
and a position of greater importance might easily
have been found for them in the galleries.

It may be said, indeed, without any great ex-
aggeration, that photographs of rooms, and of com-
pleted houses are in every way more serviceable
than the pretty drawings which architects so often
exhibit—drawings made, very often, not by the
architects themselves, but by some clever perspec-
tive draughtsman employed for the occasion.
Good photographs certainly give a fair idea of what
a house really is, whereas such drawings are as
likely as not to be chic and deceptive.

An attempt to show the general public several
complete schemes of decoration was recently made
in the Arts and Crafts Exhibition, where several
men of note arranged their work in bays, so as to
form a co-ordinated effect, but, owing to the small
amount of space at their disposal, the results were
not very impressive. If the same men were to
carry out their schemes on a larger scale, and then
publish photographs of their successes, the public
would benefit largely and the decorative arts
would be encouraged.

In the series of illustrations that follow these few
notes, some good houses and a few homely room-
decorations may be studied. All were exhibited
at the Arts and Crafts, and are marked by simpli-
city of design, all have style. There are simple
and pretty gardens in two of the illustrations, and it
is interesting to compare the different effects ob-
tained by Mr. D. Gibson, in the House at Winder-
mere, and by Mr. E. Guy Dawber, in the garden
front of Donnington Hurst. Mr. F. W. Troup is
represented by several views of interesting houses,
in one of which full justice is done to a fine hall,
airy and spacious, and full of light. Note, too, in
the bedroom decorations of Mr. Schultz's House of
Falkland, the happy union of strength and repose
with elegance and richness; and do not forget to
renew acquaintance with the sterner architecture of
Mr. Walter Cave.

loading ...