This is a view from the wonderful new highwalks under “London Wall Place”, the office development.
Here is the drawing in situ on the high walk:
It has been snowing now for several days. Robin invited me to sketch The Charterhouse in the snow, and suggested a viewpoint from the second floor of the Infirmary.
From here I could see all three of the Barbican Towers. Someone was clearing snow in the foreground, but they moved on before I could get them in the picture.
It was a good place to sketch, warm and quiet. I could hear the muffled sounds of the nurses moving about below, and of the Brothers who were in the infirmary. Sometimes they called out.
Here is what the picture looked like before the colour went on.
This picture took about 2 hours: One hour for the pencil outline, half an hour for the pen, and half an hour for the colour – roughly. It took ages to get the proportions right. Especially in the snow, the eye sees detail in far-away objects, so the temptation is to draw them too big.
After I handed in my visitor’s badge at the gate, I went out into Charterhouse Square. I looked back at the Chapel. And did a quick pen sketch, standing in the snow.
This took about 10 minutes, coloured later on my desk at home.
Thank you to Robin, and to the Brothers, Master and staff at the Charterhouse for their hospitality.
Bastion House aka 140 London Wall is a huge modernist monolith, reminiscent of the monolith in “2001 – A Space Odyssey”. I couldn’t find a site to draw the monolith part today, so here is a view at Podium Level, looking West towards the Museum of London.
You see the dark undercroft, walkways and a road to a car park. Also you see the bridge that crosses London Wall.
http://postwarbuildings.com describes it thus:
“London Wall was part of a movement of amazing optimism and faith in the ideology of architectural modernism and its promise of a new built form for the city following the devastation of the blitz. It demonstrates what was possible within the breadth of vision following the Second World War and the new powers of centralised planning control. The London that emerged from the ruins of war was to be the remedy to the haphazard milieu of previous. London Wall emerged as a segment of architectural clarity, symbolic of the efforts of the public body to exercise control over the built environment and crucially attempts on the private sector.”
Architects: Powell and Moya, 1972
Here are some images of the monolith in the film “2001 – A Space Odyssey” (1968) which surely influenced, or was influenced by, architecture of the period.
I recently learned that Bastion House is going to be demolished, along with the Museum of London which is adjacent. That’s why I rushed out to draw it. The building is not listed. Here is the “immunity” listing, which is the reverse of a listing:
downloaded from: https://historicengland.org.uk/listing/the-list/list-entry/1427161
I drew Bastion House from a very convenient ledge behind an iron gate. About an hour and 20mins.
Here is a drawing of the Museum of London which I did last year:
Bastion House is just off to the right.
I sketched this after a visit to Salters Hall as part of “Open House London”.
Salters Hall is one of the London Livery companies, very ancient. The building was completed in 1976 to the designs of Sir Basil Spence. It was refurbished, with substantial alterations, in 2014. The architects for the alterations were de Metz Forbes Knight. There is a new entrance pavilion added on the East side, and they filled in the “undercroft” or open area that had been created by the 1970s architect. The Hall is off the drawing, to the left. I shall return to draw it.
The garden is open to the public. It will be even more accessible and obvious once the London Wall Place development is done.
No. 1 London Wall Place is in the back of the drawing. It is a development by Brookfields, The original Roman London wall is on the right, partly covered in scaffolding and plastic sheeting.
“London Wall Place is a 500,000 sq ft scheme designed by MAKE” says the website.
I have previously drawn the new bridge across Wood Street, which is part of this development.
Peabody Tower, 13 floors, 52 flats, is part of the “Roscoe Street Estate”. It was completed in 1959. The architects were John Grey and Partners.
A very interesting history of the Estate was done in 2010 by Publica. Their report is here:
In the foreground is the first-floor playground of the Prior Western Primary School. The building in red brick is Fortune House, built at the same time as Peabody Tower, although it looks very different.
This drawing took 1hr45min. Done from the podium next to Breton House.
Drawn in the sun after a lunch in the Barbican Kitchen. The wind kept shifting my art equipment around, and the shadows changed as the clouds came and went.
About an hour and 15 minutes, drawn and coloured on location.
The London Wall Place newsletter of 5th January 2017 said:
“We wish to advise that the operation to install the new footbridge across Wood Street was aborted on Wednesday 21st December due to technical issues with the alignment of the Macalloy suspension bars that connect the bridge deck structure to the pylon.
We are in the process of rectifying these issues and have agreed a new road closure with the City of London for the bridge installation, week commencing 6th February with a back up closure the following week.
The install of the stainless steel pylon on the 19th December was a success and this is ready to receive the bridge.”
“Macalloy” is the name of the manufacturer of the steel bars. They are based in Sheffield.
The bridge was successfully installed on the 6th February.
I drew the picture sitting on my suitcase near the vehicle entrance to the St Giles area. A man came to open the nearby garage, which was crammed with builder’s equipment and paint pots. Later, a succession of well dressed middle-aged people came by, as though leaving a large event. They were all of a type, and spoke distantly with each other.
Afterwards, I walked underneath the bridge and looked at the junction between the bridge and the sloping walkway, on the right of the picture. This joint is interesting because the walkway slopes down, so, to join it perfectly, the bridge cannot be horizontal at this point. It looks as though the bridge twists slightly to accommodate this geometry, but it’s difficult to see at the moment. I have drawn the bridge as slightly rainbow-shaped, as that’s what it looked like, but the architect’s pictures in the newsletters show it as flat: