Plasterwork

Royston was asked to remodel plasterwork for the Front Parlour at Home House, Portman Square in London. He worked from Robert Adam’s original drawings for the room. The various elements were modelled in plasticine on to pieces of wood which were delivered to a London plaster workshop who cast and installed them in the room. The restoration of the building was written up in articles, in Country Life and House & Garden.

Royston decided to decorate his own house using designs from 18th century architects. The dimensions of the rooms were the determining factor in deciding which designs could be used. This was drawn up accurately onto the ceiling, using the measuring key on the original drawing. The borders, straight lines and circles, are run in plaster using a template. The ornament is modelled by Royston and then cast, sometimes hundreds per mould, by Fiona.

Four rooms have decorated ceilings and the decoration has expanded the space in each room. The paint colours are mixed by Royston. There is a decorated chimneypiece in each one. Three ceilings are decorated with paintings in frames, in the style of Rebecca and Zucchi.

The ground floor ceilings are from George Richardson’s book of ceilings, Plates 13 and 19. The former has a chimneypiece by Wyatt from Heveningham (unexecuted design), The latter has a Richardson chimneypiece. An article in Swansea Life, 2113, shows one of these ceilings but the colours have since been changed.

In the larger bedroom is the Headfort Ballroom ceiling with a central history painting after Zucchi. This room has a simple Wyatt chimneypiece. Another bedroom has a Wyatt ceiling from Curraghmore in Ireland with a Richardson chimneypiece.

Royston has modelled and installed door friezes, to echo the main friezes of rooms. He modelled a frieze copied from a Dublin town house for a new build garden pavilion in Ireland.

View the Plasterwork Gallery here