Our clients, the owners of a early 19th century townhouse in Dublin, required a large Georgian library to form the main part of the raised ground floor living space.
The brief was to create an understated room in which books are the heroes.
When designing libraries into period settings, Artichoke will often integrate its work with a building’s original architectural joinery, and in this case the grand townhouse room, built in 1819, presented itself beautifully. A section of the original Georgian dado was stripped of years of paint build up to present its original crisp lines. This was then copied and integrated along the face of the library bookcases to make them appear more architectural.
The perfect location of the door into the room also allowed the library furniture to span both sides of the opening, giving the Artichoke team the opportunity to integrate the architrave into the library furniture. Apart from this, the room was left entirely as built in 1819, presenting one long wall for the main bookcase, and two recesses either side of the chimney breast.
The client’s request for Artichoke to design them a library coincided well with a series of recent visits by Artichoke to St Giles House in Wiltshire, original home to the 1st Earl of Shaftesbury, Anthony Ashley-Cooper.
The house had fallen into disrepair after the second World War and was on the English Heritage buildings at risk register until being rescued by Nick Ashley-Cooper in 2010.
The magnificent library remained untouched throughout (apart from by pigeons!), and was in a sorry state. It was this room that gave is the inspiration for the design direction for the library in Dublin.