History of William Burges – English Architect and Designer

William Burges (architect)

William Burges (architect) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

#BritainsHistory says William Burges (1827–81) was an English architect and designer, and one of the greatest of the Victorian art-architects. He sought in his work to escape from 19th-century industrialisation and the Neoclassical architectural style and to re-establish the architectural and social values of a utopian medieval England. He stands within the Gothic Revival tradition, his works echoing the Pre-Raphaelites and heralding the Arts and Crafts movement. His first major commission was Saint Fin Barre’s Cathedral, Cork, in 1863. Burges’s most notable works are Cardiff Castle and Castell Coch, both for John Crichton-Stuart, 3rd Marquess of Bute. Other buildings include Gayhurst House, Knightshayes Court, and St Mary’s, Studley Royal. Many of his designs were never executed or were subsequently demolished, and his plans for the redecoration of the interior of St Paul’s Cathedral were abandoned. He also designed metalwork, sculpture, jewellery, furniture and stained glass. Art Applied to Industry, a series of lectures he gave to the Society of Arts in 1864, illustrates the breadth of his interests. The revival of interest in Victorian art has led to a renewed appreciation of Burge’s and his work.

 

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