Books

Clouds: The Biography of a Country House

£45.00

ISBN: 9780300057768
Author(s): Caroline Dakers
Format: hardback
Year published: 1993
Publisher: Yale University Press
Publisher Location: London
Total Pages: 296
Illustrations: Illustrated in colour and black and white throughout

1 in stock

This book is essentially a study of British aristocratic and artistic patronage of the arts in the under-explored period after 1850, approached through an intensive look at a single house – Clouds, known as “the house of the age”. It was built by the glamorous and unconventionally gifted Percy and Madeline Wyndham, and designed by Philip Webb, one of Britain’s greatest architects. It became one of the centres of artistic and political life in late-Victorian and Edwardian Britain, and set the style for a whole generation of country house living. Dakers recreates the atmosphere and the lives lived in the house, the personalities of its three generations of Wyndham owners, and the succession of distinguished guests drawn to it – Henry James, Rossetti, Burne-Jones, Kipling, Whistler and Lord Alfred Douglas, amongst many others. She tracks the decline in the tradition of aristocratic patronage through a decline in the fortunes of Clouds itself – by the 1930s, the “palace of art” was a vast white elephant, and the house was sold to an institution, its treasures dispersed and its structure dynamited into a more usable space

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