Tuesday, 8 March 2016

Inigo Jones

Inigo Jones (1573-1652)  was a true renaissance man. Little is known of his early life, the son of a Welsh cloth worker he may have been employed as a joiner but at some point a rich patron, impressed by his sketches, sent him to Italy to study drawing and from there it was onwards and upwards.
The stamp set issued in 1973 for the 400th Anniversary of his birth and designed by Rosalind Dease probably sums up this polymath whose fluent Italian gave him an insight into Palladian architecture and the rules of proportion and symmetry; the concepts he put into practice with his architecture when he returned to England.  The stamps show two of his buildings and the stage settings and costumes he created  for court masques (he is also credited with bringing the proscenium arch and moveable scenery to the English theatre).  Some 450 drawings of costumes and theatre design survive however his statue was destroyed in the Great Fire of London in 1666 along with some of his buildings.

The statue I show is by the 18th Century Flemish sculptor John Michael Rysbrack and I thought it a bit random being here at Holker Hall as it did not seem to connect to anything.
It turns out indeed it doesn't and was originally installed at the neo-Palladium villa, Chiswick House in west London built by the 3rd Earl of Burlington in 1729 to showcase his art collection "and enthral his guests". An Inigo Jones statue would have been a nice nod to architectural history. The statue arrived at its present location because the 7th Earl of Burlington brought it north to Holker Hall.  He was part of the Cavendish family who have many properties and land throughout the country.   The statue at the time of this photograph in 2014 was on one of the garden walks to the north of the house.

The next time I visited Holker Hall Gardens (which have recently been awarded Garden of the Year 2015/16 by the BBC Countryfile Magazine) Mr Jones had moved
nearer the house and was on a bare mound of earth tucked away in a corner
I presume from the way the trees are cut they are going to plant up the mound.  As I usually visit the gardens when I take my car in for its annual service at a nearby garage (due next month) I wait in anticipation to see where Inigo Jones peregrinations have taken him.

I leave you with some views of the 'Queens House' at Greenwich, London, designed by Inigo Jones, which is supposed to be fabulous inside but being short of time I contented myself on the way past with some views of the entrance
and part of the south facade
and the view from Greenwich Park hill
gleaming white in the centre on a  very misty London day. 

An entry to ABC Wednesday, a journey through the alphabet, this week sojourning at I here   


carol l mckenna said...

Fascinating and informative post and wonderful photography!

Happy Week to you ~ ^_^

Photo Cache said...

Very informative. Interesting stamps.


Roger Owen Green said...

Great name combo, and a most clever fellow!


Melody Steenkamp said...

Never heard of him before, nice to read about such an interesting and influencial person.... i love historie.

Have a nice ABC-Day / - Week
♫ M e l ☺ d y ♫ (abc-w-team)

Reader Wil said...

Well this man was very talented in all respects
Wil, ABCWTeam