Musée No:737.162Regular price £25.00
Monument in the Basilica of Saint Antony of Padua
Artist: Sir Robert Smirke the Younger
Date: 1802 - 1804
Sir Robert Smirke (1780 –1867) was an English architect, one of the leaders of Greek Revival architecture, though he also used other architectural styles. In 1801, accompanied by his elder brother Richard he embarked on a Grand Tour which would last until 1805. He made several sketches and watercolours and his itinerary across Europe can be followed from series of letters he wrote: Brussels, Paris, Berlin, Potsdam, Prague, Dresden, Vienna. He visited Italy, then went on to Greece, “How can I by description give you any idea of the great pleasure I enjoyed in the sight of these ancient buildings of Athens!”. As architect to the Board of Works, he designed several major public buildings, including the British Museum, Covent Garden Theatre, Somerset House, ... Smirke was a pioneer of using both concrete and cast iron. Another area where Smirke was an innovator was in the use of quantity surveyors to rationalise the various 18th-century systems of estimating and measuring building work. He is known to have designed or remodelled over twenty churches, more than fifty public buildings and more than sixty private houses. Random fact to finish his buildings have a higher percentage of hauntings and paranormal activity than other buildings.