Continuing with the tear sheets I unearthed recently, I have this interesting example from English House and Garden magazine. I'm not sure when this first appeared, probably in the early 2000's. I think I probably tore this one out not because it gave even the remotest inspiration for any interior I would ever be involved in (stately homes are rather thin on the ground in Australia), but because of the Architectural interest in this design.
The owner of this home in the English countryside wanted a house that borrowed heavily from Palladio's Villa Capra, also known as La Rotonda, located in the Veneto at Vicenza in Italy and built in the 1570's. Andrea Palladio is probably the most influential Architect in history, and the Villa Capra is his most famous and influential building. His designs epitomised all that were good about classical Architecture, and were quite revolutionary during the Renaissance. His designs of course were based on those of Ancient Rome, but he played with proportion and scale to ensure that his structures were pure symphonies of proportional perfection. Several hundred years after his death, his designs were discovered anew, this time by English Gentlemen on their Grand Tour. The Grand Tour would take in many areas with artistic and cultural merit, and Gentlemen on their Grand Tour would typically travel at a leisurely pace for several years, collecting antiquities, intaglios, statuary and sketching the buildings and scenery that they saw. When they returned to England, they wished to show off their enlightened and cultural ways, and sought to emulate the designs they had seen while on their travels.
stairs to the upper level
entry hall, the doorway has putti playing musical instruments hand carved especially
Palladio's designs directly influenced a style of Architecture that has become known as Georgian Architecture in England. This house is much more recent than that however, and was built in 1987. It is described in the text as being "modest in scale", which I suppose it is if you compare it to your common and garden Stately Home with 60 bedrooms. The text also notes that it is decorated with informal family life in mind. Now this is casual country living if you are used to a lot of staff I'd say.
The interiors were done by David Mlinaric, with much of the curtain fabric being specially woven commissions. Attention to detail means that there are many little drinks tables placed where you'd want them, and items such as Butler's pantries (for your real Butler, not an imagine one) conveniently located (and apparently with charts for the staff pinned on the wall showing how a formal table setting should be done).
bathroom with Victorian style shower
Dining room with Fortuny damask upholstered walls and a Venetian chandelier
view from the sunken courtyard
the breakfast room with Meissen plates on the wall, each one with a different bird
The drawing room
If you're interested in Palladio and his works, there is a Martin Randall tour this year on this very topic. How I would love to go on it as it is led by an Architectural Historian, and would be completely fascinating as they're accessing privately owned homes that are not open to the general public. But alas, it's not to be as I tackle my own, rather more modest Villa this year. So while I don't think that this home will give any inspiration from a decoration point of view, it's always nice to have a little glimpse into someone else's life, and in particular something that has been conjured up from someone's Architectural dream.
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