The celebrated British architect Sir John Soane (1753-1837) created his extraordinary house-museum from three properties in Lincoln's Inn Fields, London. There, Soane exhibited an array of artifacts. This is the first major illustrated history of and guide to the museum, with exclusive images by renowned photographer Derry Moore.
This new edition provides a comprehensive description of the remarkable Sir John Soane's Museum in London's Lincoln's Inn Fields and reflects recent changes to the Museum including the immaculate recreation of the Private Apartments, the Lobby off the Breakfast Room, and the Catacombs, all of which were opened after the previous edition went to press. It will serve both as a souvenir and as the most accurate account of Sir John Soane's remarkable creation.
Sir John Soane's London house is undoubtedly one of the most unusual works ever produced by an architect. Soane's highly individual interpretations of classical language, combined with his singular spatial solutions, show that he was an artist well ahead of his time, almost a pioneer of the Modern movement. His great and unusual gift for creating monumental scale in a confined space makes his house a rare visual pleasure. An Act of Parliament in 1833 secured Soane's house for the nation and for posterity. Soane gave instructions that the house should be preserved in all its detail as he left it on his death in 1837, at the advanced age of 84. This means that we can still experience the unusual visual world of this remarkable architect today. Soane altered and added to his house over a period of 40 years. His deep conviction that man can be educated and bettered by studying examples of work in the visual arts of many periods made him an insatiable collector and his house is an Aladdin's cave of objects, paintings and curios that make it a source of great fascination and enjoyment. This publication in the Opus series is a rare but successful record showing the principal spaces in their overall effect and in detail -- a most difficult task considering the spatial complexities and small dimensions of some of the rooms. Richard Bryant demonstrates his enormous skill as a photographer by capturing Soane's idiosyncratic and rich conceptions in his images, which are a masterpiece of architectural documentation. The text describes the history of the building and its complicated development, together with a short biography of its creator.