Cosmopolitan interiors: Oscar Wilde and the House Beautiful

van der Plaat, Deborah (2011) Cosmopolitan interiors: Oscar Wilde and the House Beautiful. Interstices: Journal of Architecture and Related Arts, 12 48-58.

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Name Description MIMEType Size Downloads
Author van der Plaat, Deborah
Title Cosmopolitan interiors: Oscar Wilde and the House Beautiful
Journal name Interstices: Journal of Architecture and Related Arts
ISSN 1170-585X
Publication date 2011-11-14
Sub-type Article (original research)
Volume 12
Start page 48
End page 58
Total pages 11
Place of publication Auckland, New Zealand
Publisher Enigma : He Aupiki
Collection year 2012
Language eng
Abstract In 1882, the Irish poet, writer and aesthete, Oscar Wilde (1854-1900) travelled to the United States and Canada to promote, in an early example of indirect marketing, the American showing of Gilbert and Sullivan’s comic opera Patience. Funded by Richard D’Oyly Carte of the Savoy Opera Company, the highly recognisable Wilde was to educate the American public on the principles of aestheticism, a reference point for humour in Gilbert and Sullivan’s opera (Gere and Hoskins 2000; Haill 2011). Travelling throughout America and Canada over a 10-month period, and lecturing in diverse and often unconventional venues, including the “Trimmed Hat Department” of the Eric Bros., Department Store in New York, Wilde delivered variations of four basic lectures: “The Renaissance in English Art”, a presentation on the Pre-Raphaelites and the Grosvenor Gallery Artists, “Irish Poets and Poetry of the Nineteenth Century”, “Art and the Handicraftsman” and “House Decoration”. First delivered in Chicago in May 1882, the latter was later retitled the “House Beautiful: The Practical Application of the Principles of Aesthetic Theory to Exterior and Interior House Decoration, with Observations upon Dress and Personal Ornaments” (Hofer & Scharnhorst 2011; Gere & Hoskins 2000). While Robert Ross, Wilde’s literary executor, published the first two lectures in 1908, no manuscript of the latter has survived.1 A reconstruction of the text, however, based on first person reports in the American press of 1882, has been produced (O’Brien 1974).2
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status Unknown
Additional Notes Interstices12 - "Unsettled Containers: Aspects of Interiority" derives from a symposium held at The University of Auckland’s School of Architecture and Planning in honour of Distinguished Visitor David Leatherbarrow in October 2010.

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: ATCH (Architecture Theory History Criticism) Publications
School of Architecture Publications
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Created: Mon, 14 Nov 2011, 15:03:05 EST by Deborah van der Plaat on behalf of School of Architecture