Changing faces: architectural façades collection

Clever devices for comparing designs

Inspired by the We Live in the Office exhibition which takes us on an architectural journey as told through the history of the façade we thought it would be fun to put together a gallery of architectural drawings all of which feature moveable flaps, an ingenious graphic device by which the reader can view alternative designs on one sheet.

One of the major proponents of this device was the landscape architect Humphry Repton. Repton would produce a Red Book, so called because of their red Morocco leather bindings, for the client of each of his proposed landscape schemes. These bound volumes of essays and watercolours served as persuasive marketing tools for his work and included both 'before' and 'after' views of the development sites utilising overlaid paper flaps to indicate Repton's suggested improvements. One such example held by the RIBA is the Langley Park Red Book for Sir Peter Burrell in 1790 for his Beckenham seat.

One of Repton’s sons, the architect George Stanley Repton, also employed this device to good effect for example at Kitley House showing 'before' and 'after' views from all four points of the compass for the MP for Devonshire, Edmund Pollexfen Bastard.

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99499 items
View of Frascati and its villasRIBA16395

View of from the River Ganges of the town of Bithur, Uttar PradeshRIBA37178

View of garden with fountainRIBA18947

View of GenoaRIBA7038

View of Gibraltar from above Camp BayRIBA18766

View of Gibraltar from the bayRIBA18765

View of Gosport with Portsmouth in the backgroundRIBA47245

View of Grasmere Lake, CumbriaRIBA14842

View of Gray Street, ManilaRIBA11171

View of Great Malvern Priory (Parish Church of St Mary and St Michael) churchyard, Malvern, WorcestershireRIBA29444

View of Greenwich from Deptford, LondonRIBA18817

View of Grosvenor Gate Lodge and terraced houses on Park Lane and the corner of Upper Grosvenor Street, facing Hyde Park, London: perspectiveRIBA22448

View of Hackney, LondonRIBA18818

View of Hammersmith from Chiswick, LondonRIBA18819

View of Harrow seen from the grounds of Harrow School, LondonRIBA29423

View of houses and small shops possibly in LondonRIBA29427

View of houses at Sion Hill, Clifton, Bristol: perspective view with parkland in the foregroundRIBA32107

View of houses beside a river with mountains beyond, Daramandi, Uttar PradeshRIBA37177

View of houses facing Hyde Park, London: perspectiveRIBA32015

View of houses on Park Lane, facing Hyde Park, London: perspectiveRIBA32016

View of housing and billboard posters on a busy street probably in LondonRIBA29405

View of HowickRIBA19754

View of huts or cottages in a woodland setting - design for a satyric or rustic stage setRIBA38322

View of Hyde Park Corner, London, following alterationsRIBA20935