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IIIF Actions
Colen Campbell, 1676–1729

Unidentified Town House: Front Elevation

Additional Title(s):

Design for a Town House

Materials & Techniques:
Graphite, pen and wash within triple-ruled border on medium, slightly textured, cream laid paper
Sheet: 12 5/16 x 19 1/4 inches (31.3 x 48.9 cm)

Watermark: IV

Credit Line:
Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Collection
Copyright Status:
Public Domain
Accession Number:
Drawing & Watercolors-Architectural
Prints and Drawings
Subject Terms:
architectural subject | Palladian | town houses
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IIIF Manifest:

Colen Campbell’s drawing shows the front elevation of an unidentified town house characteristic of the architect’s interest in the Palladian style. A heavy, rusticated ground floor establishes a solid foundation, from which rises a principal story faced with windows framed by attenuated Corinthian columns and alternating segmental pediments. The attic is demarcated by square fenestration with shouldered architraves, while the whole facade is crowned by a full entablature and balustraded parapet. The urban palazzo was an important building type in Palladian architecture, and perhaps this drawing is an effort to introduce such buildings to England, although measuring 148 feet at its street front, it is unusually long for a Campbell town house. Indeed, the building reflects the Palladian hierarchical facade, with arcaded rustication and classical ornament. Campbell’s design, however, omits much of the ornament included in original Palladian schemes, resulting in a simpler yet more impactful facade. The design was probably never executed.

Gallery label for installation of YCBA collection, 2014

British Architectural Drawings (Yale Center for British Art) (Yale Center for British Art, 1982-04-21 - 1982-05-30) [YCBA Objects in the Exhibition]

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