Design for Chimney-Piece with Cherub 

Creator(s):   Grinling Gibbons 1648-1721

Date:    Undated, but datable 1689-94

Accession Number:   SM 110/52

Dimensions:   388mm x 230mm

Materials:   Pen and brown ink over graphite under-drawing, with yellow ochre, green-yellow, pink, blue and grey washes; later black ink redrawing of baseline of design; on laid paper

Location:   Sir John Soane's Museum

Credit Line (copyright notice for material) :   © Sir John Soane's Museum

Online Catalogue Entry :

Design for Chimney-Piece with Cherub © Sir John Soane's Museum


This design for a chimney-piece with a cherub is one of Gibbons’s most elegant compositions. The fire surround would have been in carved stone or marble and the cherub probably in limewood; the glass or porcelain vases would have been real examples and the drapery would probably have been trompe l’oeil carving, again in limewood. The baroque recorder in the trophy is accurately drawn, with the correct number of fingerholes and the bottom one properly displaced.
Literature: Wren Society, IV, pl. 40.
Digitisation of the Drawings Collection has been made possible through the generosity of the Leon Levy Foundation.
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