History of Wall Panelling in Interior Design Periods


Early Stuart Interiors c.1603 - 1660

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Further north, but still in Devonshire, near Bideford, is another farmhouse with equally interesting plaster decoration. This is Southcott Barton which still retains three barrel vaulted rooms none of which is large. The most delight­ful of the three (some fifteen feet square is decorated at both ends with a tudor rose design curling charmingly from a chimney-piece placed to one side of the wall. Although the larger room (not illustrated) has much in common with the other Devonshire designs this illustrated example remains singularly different.

 

Southcott Barton, Bideford

Southcott Barton, Bideford

 

Should the reader feel that I have concentrated too much on the Devon Guild craftsmen, let me suggest that it is possible, even probable, that any thorough local study would reward the student with a corresponding `corner' in local art in some specific form. That there were marked differences in the styles used for plasterwork in different parts of the country at the same time is obvious when we compare the four examples of plaster ceilings I have chosen here.

The Lounge of `The Feathers' at Ludlow, now deservedly famous, must at one time have been unremarkable when many similar examples were in existence. The sectional divisions, covering the supporting timbers, carry a running design of repeating scrolls and flowers, the pattern divisions are decorated with the then popular vine and leaf which was not in the least unusual What is most striking to us today is the vast amount of design carried out between these sections, the time and thought that must have gone to its eventual completion. The Guild craftsmen seems to have been so in love with his work that he was unable to leave it alone and had to go on adding to his design until every available space was filled.

 

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