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Article

Reinhard Zimmermann

[Caux; Caulx]

French family of architects, engineers and landscape gardeners.

(b France, 1576; bur; Paris, Feb 28, 1626).

He was a Huguenot from the Dieppe region (Normandy). Between c. 1595 and 1598 he visited Italy, where he was strongly influenced by the gardens laid out c. 1570 by Bernardo Buontalenti at Pratolino, near Florence, and by their mechanical artifices. De Caus’s work also reveals a knowledge of the gardens of the Villa d’Este in Tivoli. From c. 1598 to 1610 he was in Brussels, in the service of the Stadholder of the Netherlands, Albert, Archduke of Austria. There he was the engineer responsible for wells, fountains and the automatic works in the two grottoes (destr. 1768) in the garden of the Stadholder’s residence. From 1610 he lived in England, moving in the artistic circle of Henry, Prince of Wales, to whom he taught drawing and for whom he built a picture gallery at Richmond. Together with ...

Article

Cesi  

Donatella L. Sparti

Italian family of collectors. The family, whose origins were in the Umbrian town of Cesi, settled in Rome in the 15th century. In the 16th century they were celebrated for the splendour of the Giardino dei Cesi, a sculpture garden at their palace at the foot of the Gianicolo. This was established by Cardinal Paolo Emilio Cesi (b Rome, 1481; d Rome, 5 Aug 1537), who adorned the garden with antique (and contemporary) statuary. It was inherited by his brother Federico Cesi (b ?Rome, ?1 July 1500; d Rome, 28 Jan 1565), who became Cardinal in 1544 and who reorganized the garden and the palazzo so that it seemed like ‘the entrance to Paradise’ (Aldrovandi). He restored the statues and, above all, constructed an antique sculpture museum (destr. with the palazzo, 1940) with a Greek-cross plan, designed (1556–64) by Guidetto Guidetti and intended for small but precious pieces: it was one of the first buildings constructed purposely as a ...

Article

P. F. Smith

English country house and garden, near Bakewell, Derbys. The estate was purchased in 1549 by Sir William Cavendish (1505–57) and his wife, Elizabeth Talbot, later Countess of Shrewsbury, and the courtyard house was built from 1552. The 3rd Earl of Devonshire (1617–84) remodelled the interior and refenestrated the house (1676–80). The 1st Duke of Devonshire rebuilt it in stages between 1686 and 1706, following the plan of the earlier house (see Cavendish family §(1)). The four distinct fronts, each articulated with a giant order and topped with a balustrade, are among the finest and earliest Baroque façades in England: the south and west fronts are boldly ornamented with sculptural details, and the curved north façade shows strong Italian influence.

The south wing (1687–9), designed by William Talman (see Talman family, §1), contains the second-floor State Apartments and the chapel. In the State Drawing Room the ceiling (...

Article

Jean Martin-Demézil

French château on the River Cher, near Amboise, Indre-et-Loire. Having belonged to the lords of Marques from the 13th century, it was razed in 1411 and in 1513 came into the possession of Thomas Bohier (d 1524), a financier from Tours who became Deputy Treasurer to Louis XII. He set about an ambitious scheme (c. 1514–22) to rebuild the château on the foundations of an old water-mill on the right bank of the river; Diane de Poitiers, mistress of Henry II, and Catherine de’ Medici, Henry’s wife, were responsible for further 16th-century additions. The present pale stone building under tall slate roofs is one of the most picturesque of the Loire Valley châteaux. It consists of a square corps de logis and a narrow, two-storey gallery that spans the river on a series of arches.

Of the medieval building, only the keep on the right bank of the Cher, the ‘Tour des Marques’, survives, with 16th-century alterations. Bohier’s building, on a square plan with round, corbelled turrets at each corner, originally had three symmetrical elevations. The fourth, the east front, is interrupted by the two unequal projections of the library and chapel. Each elevation is of three storeys and is three bays wide, the axial bays being wider, with larger areas of window, and topped by elaborate gables to their dormers. The carved decoration, particularly the delicate Renaissance motifs on the entrance door to the north, is of very high quality....

Article

Cinzia Maria Sicca

English 18th-century Palladian villa c. 12 km west of central London in Chiswick, in the Greater London borough of Hounslow. The villa was built in 1725–9 for Boyle family, §2, 3rd Earl of Burlington, to his own designs, in grounds laid out from 1715; the interior decoration and furnishings were largely the work of William Kent, who also added to the gardens in the 1730s.

In 1704 Burlington inherited the Chiswick estate, consisting of a Jacobean house set in formal, walled grounds of 11 ha, but it was not until he returned from a visit to Italy in 1715 that he turned his attention to Chiswick. Initially, he refronted the existing house with a classical façade of three bays surmounted by a shallow pediment. In 1719 Burlington once more visited Italy, including the Veneto, in order to see buildings by Palladio at first hand, and in 1725 he began building a Palladian villa (...

Article

Noël Annesley

[Christie, Manson & Woods]

Auction house founded in London by James Christie (1730–1803). After a few years spent in the navy, James Christie worked as an assistant to an auctioneer named Mr Annesley in Covent Garden, London. He left Annesley in 1763 to set up on his own and in 1766 established his firm at the print warehouse of Richard Dalton in Pall Mall, where the Royal Academy held its exhibitions in its early years. In 1770 he moved his premises next door to Schomberg House, Pall Mall, where Thomas Gainsborough lived. The first known catalogue is dated 5 December 1766; it includes little of value except for a picture by Aelbert Cuyp. Christie rapidly established himself as one of the foremost auctioneers, however, cultivating a circle of friends and advisers that included Gainsborough, Reynolds, Horace Walpole, David Garrick, Richard Brinsley Sheridan, and Edmund Burke, and receiving many auction consignments from royalty and the nobility. During the French Revolution the firm did particularly well through the abundance of works then coming into Britain. Among the more notable early Christie sales were that of the former collection of Pope ...

Article

Phoebe Cutler

(b Boston, MA, April 27, 1902; d San Francisco, CA, Aug 30, 1978).

American landscape designer and writer. Church was educated at the University of California, Berkeley (1918–23), and at the Harvard Graduate School of Design (1923/4–6) before opening his office in San Francisco in 1932. Most of his work was in residential districts. In San Francisco he was faced with small plots and steep, hillside sites. Here and in the suburban and central valley areas, where he also worked, he confronted the post-war reality of a changing, often intensive use of the garden and a reduced level of maintenance. Whereas Church’s traditional training in the Italian Renaissance and Baroque had presented him with pergolas and fountains, the California lifestyle demanded swimming pools and barbecues. Influenced by the Modern Movement in art and architecture, he visited Alvar Aalto in Finland and the International Exhibition in Paris, both in 1937. Church applied the new ideas of multiple perspective and fluid composition to his practice. Cut on the bias, the Jerd Sullivan garden (...

Article

Robert Williams

English landscape garden near Esher, Surrey. Laid out from 1715 by John Vanbrugh and Charles Bridgeman for Thomas Pelham-Holles, Marquess of Clare and 1st Duke of Newcastle, it was extended in the 1730s by William Kent, replanted in the 1770s by ‘Capability’ Brown and restored from 1975 by the National Trust.

Vanbrugh’s association with the area began in 1710, when he built for himself a crenellated villa called Chargate. He sold it to Pelham-Holles the following year. In 1715 this politically ambitious new owner commissioned Vanbrugh to enlarge the house (renamed Claremont) massively, including a grand ballroom in one new wing, and to lay out grounds to the south, covering an adjacent wooded ridge and a vale beyond it. The loosely connected sequence of Baroque garden incidents constructed over the next decade provided an extended setting for Pelham-Holles’s numerous high-society gatherings. On the ridge’s summit, overlooking the expanding house, Vanbrugh raised a turreted and embattled belvedere; this solitary and evocative toy keep was among the earliest examples of castellated Gothick to be built in an English garden (for illustration ...

Article

Cleve  

K. A. Ottenheym

[Fr. Cleves; Dut. Kleef; Ger. Kleve]

German town in North Rhine–Westphalia. In 1647 it became the official residence of John Maurice, Count of Nassau-Siegen, when he was appointed Stadholder of Cleve by the Elector of Brandenburg. From 1663 the Count restored and rebuilt Schloss Schwanenburg, and from 1671 he built the Prinzenhof as a successor to the Mauritshuis (1633, by Jacob van Campen and Pieter Post) in The Hague. The landscaped parks created by the Stadholder around the town were far more ambitious: a star-shaped network of paths and roads, begun in 1650, made use of the natural features of the land, with the visitor’s attention repeatedly caught by points of interest. Pleasure grounds were established next to the Prinzenhof, including the Springenberg, with the amphitheatre, and the neighbouring Fontana Miranda. This was an important attraction consisting of a series of ascending terraces, provided with fountains and memorials, rising from an ornamental pond with islands and a canal and culminating at its highest point in a semicircular colonnade. Two statues in the garden, the ...

Article

Eleanor M. McPeck

(b Lancaster, MA, Dec 16, 1814; d Hinsdale, IL, Dec 5, 1900).

American landscape architect and writer. He was a descendant of Moses Cleveland, who came from Ipswich, England, in 1635, and his father, Richard Jaffry Cleveland, was a sea captain. Cleveland gained early agricultural experience in Cuba while his father served as Vice-Consul in Havana. On his return to the USA after 1833, Horace studied civil engineering in Illinois and Maine, settled afterwards on a farm near Burlington, NJ, and became corresponding secretary of the New Jersey Horticultural Society. In 1854 he moved with his family to the vicinity of Boston, spending three years in Salem and ten years in Danvers. During this early phase of his career he formed a partnership with Robert Morris Copeland (1830–74), a landscape architect of Lexington, MA, and designed several rural cemeteries near Boston, including Oak Grove (1854) in Gloucester, MA, and the celebrated Sleepy Hollow (1855) in Concord, MA. In ...

Article

Sheila Harvey

(b Simla, India, June 8, 1897; d Lechlade, Glos, Jan 27, 1981).

English landscape architect. She attended Swanley Horticultural College, Kent, in 1920, where she came under the influence of the American-trained landscape architect Madeline Agar (c. 1876–1967), with whom she worked on a war memorial garden in Wimbledon from 1921–2. In 1922 Colvin set up her own practice and by 1939 had worked on some 300 gardens, including the Habsburg estate at Zywiec in Poland. A study tour of America was undertaken in 1932 to see the work of such designers as Frederick Law Olmsted (1822–1903). In 1937 she lectured at the Architectural Association and the Regent Street Polytechnic in London. After World War II she resumed practice in a London office shared with Sylvia Crowe but in 1965 moved to Filkins, near Lechlade, taking Hal Moggridge (b1936) as a partner in 1969. Her later work involved a variety of sites, including power stations, reservoirs, universities, hospitals, factories and mineral workings. In ...

Article

French royal palace c. 75 km north of Paris, in the département of Oise. Compiègne has been a royal residence since the 7th century, when it was used by Merovingian kings. The present building was begun (1751) for Louis XV, King of France, by Anges-Jacques Gabriel. It was finished (1786) for Louis XVI by Le Dreux de la Châtre (b 1721) to Gabriel’s plans. The plan is trapezoidal, with the garden front placed at an oblique angle to the cour d’honneur, a complexity necessitated by the awkwardness of the site. The cour d’honneur is in Gabriel’s plain style, the emphasis being on continuous horizontals with few curved elements. The elevation comprises two high storeys of equal height beneath an attic. A classical tetrastyle pavilion front with a pediment rises in the centre; a flattened version of this motif, using pilasters, is used on the upper part of the end pavilions of the side wings of the ...

Article

Priscilla Boniface

Room or building for the display of plants, often used as a living area (sometimes known as a ‘winter garden’) and frequently attached to a house. The distinctions between the conservatory and other forms of glass house (see Greenhouse and Orangery) were blurred until well into the 19th century, when a conservatory was usually interpreted as an ornamental, glazed living room decorated with plants. On 30 October 1683 the diarist John Evelyn reported on the ‘greenhouses’ (destr.) containing myrtle and orange trees that were attached to the house of Sir Henry Capel (d 1696) at Kew; in the 19th and 20th centuries such buildings might well have been termed conservatories. The Conservatory (1787–90; later the Sculpture Gallery) at Woburn Abbey, Beds, designed by Henry Holland, was also called the Greenhouse, demonstrating the interchangeable nature of the two terms in the late 18th century. During the 18th century visits could be made to the plant houses and other garden buildings to escape the boredom resulting from over-long confinement in a country house. In the later 19th century the function of the conservatory as a retreat became so predominant that the plants became merely a decorative background in a glazed room intended for relaxation and entertainment....

Article

Françoise Hamon

(b Paris, May 11, 1698; d Paris, Oct 1, 1777).

French architect. He belonged to a family of gardeners from Ivry, in the inner suburbs of Paris. He did not make the traditional trip to Italy to complete his education and appears to have learnt his trade with Nicolas Dulin.

The career and works of Contant are known chiefly from the praise of his contemporaries and through the publication of his executed buildings and designs, the Oeuvres d’architecture (1769), which includes drawings dating from 1739 onwards. This collection of 71 engravings has no written text, and many of the designs for doors and fountains are difficult to identify or date. The fountains are characterized by the use of a generally Baroque vocabulary: various types of rustication, columns with alternating bands, rockwork etc. The triumphal arches, on the other hand, remain close to the style of the reign of Louis XIV (see Louis XIV style).

Contant worked independently for the first time in ...

Article

Ellen G. D’Oench

Group portrait, often full-length but small in scale, set in a domestic interior or garden setting. It was an especially popular genre in 18th-century England though it can also be found later than this and in other countries.

The term derives from the Latin word ‘conversatio’ and is synonymous with the French word ‘conversation’; this was defined in the 17th century as a gathering of acquaintances for social discourse. It is also related to the Flemish word ‘conversatie’. In the Netherlands in the 17th century this term was used to describe paintings of informal groups, though not necessarily portraits of known people. In 1629 Rubens referred to a group of women as a ‘conversatie van jouffrouwen’, and two variants of his open-air Conversatie à la mode (both c. 1632–4; Madrid, Prado) were entitled as such in his 1645 estate sale.

Precedents for the conversation piece’s qualities of private narrative include ...

Article

Cornish  

Keith N. Morgan

American town and former artists’ colony in the state of New Hampshire. Situated on a line of hills near the eastern bank of the Connecticut River c. 160 km north-west of Boston, Cornish looks across to Windsor, VT, and Mt Ascutney. It was settled in 1763 as an agrarian community, but its population was rapidly reduced during the migration to the cities in the second half of the 19th century. From 1885 until around the time of World War I, Cornish was the summer home of a group of influential sculptors, painters, architects, gardeners, and writers. For this coherent group, the Cornish hills symbolized an ideal natural environment that reflected the classical images so important in their work. The sculptor who first spent a summer in Cornish in 1885, Augustus Saint-Gaudens, bought his summer residence there in 1891, and he was soon followed by the painters Henry Oliver Walker (...

Article

Malcolm Airs

Large and prestigious residence in a rural area. Usually set off by gardens and surrounded by extensive parkland and agricultural estates, it remained one of the most prominent cultural forms in England for more than five centuries. The owners of these houses were not only the source of most political, economic, and social influence but were also arbiters of taste. As patrons and collectors they influenced the whole field of artistic endeavour, and their collections and furnishings, interior decorations, and gardens combined with the architectural fabric of their houses to create ensembles rivalling in artistic importance the French Château and the Italian Villa.

The genesis of the country house can be found in the lightly fortified residences of feudal magnates of the Middle Ages. These were generally arranged in a courtyard form, with a hall, kitchen, service rooms, and family apartments in the main court, and an outer or base court containing lodgings and storage buildings. The entrance was protected by a gate-house, and the principal fenestration was concentrated on the internal elevations of the courts. In the early Middle Ages, the essential elements of hall, kitchen, chapel, and lodgings were often separate structures or groups of buildings isolated within a defensive enclosure (e.g. ...

Article

Wilhelmina Halsema-Kubes

(b ?Abbeville, Somme; fl 1714–56).

French sculptor, active in the northern Netherlands. His earliest known works are two signed and very elegant Louis XIV garden vases decorated with allegories of the seasons (1714; Amsterdam, Rijksmus.); they were commissioned by David van Mollem (1670–1746), a silk merchant, who was laying out a fine garden for the country house on his estate of Zijdebalen, near Utrecht. Cressant’s name is first mentioned in Utrecht c. 1730–31 in connection with his statue of Justice for the Stadhuis; it is now in the Paleis van Justitie in Utrecht. The many commissions for garden sculpture that Cressant received from van Mollem probably account for his settling in Utrecht: other artists who made sculptures and vases for these gardens are Jan-Baptiste Xavery, Jan van der Mast (fl c. 1736) and J. Matthijsen. Cressant made for van Mollem, among other things, vases, putti and a wooden Neptune: very little of this work survives....

Article

Sheila Harvey

(b Banbury, Oxon, Sept 15, 1901; d June 30, 1997).

English landscape architect and writer. She attended Swanley Horticultural College in 1920–22 to study fruit farming, but after travelling through Italy she was inspired to design gardens. After returning to England in 1926, she became a pupil of the landscape gardener Edward White (1876–1952) and also worked for Cutbush Nurseries, Barnet, in 1939. From 1945 she practised landscape architecture in London with the assistance of Brenda Colvin. Small projects eventually led to her appointment as landscape consultant to the new towns of Harlow and Basildon (1948–58) and the Central Electricity Generating Board (1948–68). In 1964 she became the Forestry Commission’s first landscape consultant, a post she held until 1976 and where her work broke new ground. Crowe regarded aesthetic and ecological principles as inseparable and she believed that forestry planting should relate to land form. As a result of her influence at the Forestry Commission, landscape considerations were taken into account whenever land was acquired, so that natural rather than artificial boundaries would be used. In ...

Article

Jill Lever

English architects and landscape planners. The partnership was formed in 1961 by John (William Charles) Darbourne (b London, 11 Jan 1935; d London, 29 Sept 1991) and Geoffrey Darke (b Evesham, Surrey, 1 Sept 1929). Though their work includes a football stand (for Chelsea Football Club, London, 1972–4), laboratories and offices (e.g. IBM, Hursley Park, Hants, 1979–81) and the landscaping (1976–7) of much of Heathrow Airport, London, it was in housing that Darbourne & Darke made their mark. Lillington Gardens (competition, 1961; built 1964–72), Pimlico, London, broke with the then current use of standard units in standard blocks. The required high density (543 bed spaces per ha) was achieved without high-rise, using traditional materials, an ingenious and complex section and landscaping from the ground to the upper floors. A larger scheme was later built (1966–77) on an equally difficult urban site, at Marquess Road, Islington, London. A stylistic development of the last phase of Lillington Gardens, it continued the idea of family maisonnettes with gardens at ground level and smaller flats above, fronted by wide ‘roof streets’ with space for planting. A linear canal-side park completed the landscaping, which was an integral part of all the firm’s work....