Edwin Landseer Lutyens

Awarded the Royal Gold Medal in 1921, after being known for helping the public to understand the art of architecture

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Viceroy's House, New Delhi: sketches in a letter by Sir Edwin Lutyens to his wife, Lady Emily, 1913. © RIBA Library Photographs CollectionViceroy's House, New Delhi, 1931: the east front. © RIBA Library Photographs CollectionUnexecuted design for the Municipal Art Gallery, Dublin. © RIBA Library Drawings and Archives CollectionsPreliminary design for Munstead Wood, Godalming, 1893. © RIBA Library Photographs CollectionDesigns for piers for gates, 1739, plate from Batty Langley's book. © RIBA Library Books and Periodicals CollectionDesign for Marsh Court (Marshcourt), Stockbridge, 1901. © RIBA Library Drawings and Archives CollectionsDesign for a Tuscan gate, 1739, plate from Batty Langley's book. © RIBA Library Books and Periodicals Collection

Edwin Lutyens studied at the Royal College of Art, London before working for George & Peto. He established himself in his own architectural practice as early as 1889.

Lutyens' first important work was a house at Crooksbury near Farnham for a Mr A Chapman. However, his work with the gardener and garden designer Gertrude Jekyll helped launch his career, including a house he designed for her at Munstead Wood in 1896. Lutyens designed nearly 300 houses, and on several, he collaborated with Jekyll who designed the garden. 

 

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© RIBA Library Photographs Collection 1942

Born: 1868 (-1944)
Nationality: British

In 1912, Lutyens was invited to advise the Government of India and worked alongside Herbert Baker to design the buildings of New Delhi. Of particular note is his Viceroy's House, which is known to be both grand and imposing. Lutyens was also one of a number of architects commissioned by the Imperial War Graves Commission, and amongst his memorials, designed the Cenotaph in Whitehall, London.

Lutyens asserted the supremacy of the art that they (architects) loved, and he taught the public how to understand it.

Lutyens was commissioned in 1932 as the architect of the catholic cathedral of Christ the King in Liverpool. The new cathedral would have an area of 233,000 sq ft with a central dome diameter of 168ft – a larger space than existed on any other building (St Peter's in Rome having 137ft and St Paul’s in London having 112ft). Work began in 1933 but had to be abandoned in 1940 because of the Second World War, so the only part of Lutyens’ cathedral which was built was the crypt. It was eventually decided that the cathedral was too large to finish, and so a competition was held in 1959 to design a new cathedral. It was won by Frederick Gibberd, who incorporated a platform over Lutyens' crypt.

Awards:

  • Royal Gold Medal, 1921

Buildings by Lutyens:

  • Deanery Gardens, Sonning, 1899
  • Tigbourne Court, Witley, 1899
  • Folly Farm, Sulhampstead, 1905
  • Viceroy's House, New Delhi,  1913
  • Cenotaph in Whitehall, London, 1919
  • Britannic House, Finsbury Circus, London, 1925
  • Castle Drogo country house, 1930

 

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