Arts and Crafts Architecture
Picture Tour

Isaac Bell House (page 2 of 2)

Southeast corner view of one of the best surviving examples of the Shingle Style in America. Photo by Howard J. Partridge.

South and East Elevations from Driveway
Isaac Bell House in Newport, Rhode Island

This Shingle Style showpiece, built 1881-83, is an early work of McKim, Mead, and White, the same architectural firm who eventually would design the Boston Public Library, the Rhode Island State Capitol Building, and New York's now demolished Pennsylvania Station.  At a time when most American architects were imitating European models, Charles Follen McKim, William Rutherford Mead, and Stanford White were seeking their architectural inspiration from Colonial America.  The choice of unpainted wood shingles; understated, often classically inspired door, window, and trim details; and rambling, two and three story, clustered forms are as much a homage to the early American homes of New England as they are a unique American interpretation of avant garde English Arts and Crafts philosophy.  The firm also built or remodeled several other buildings nearby in the Shingle Style, including Stanford White's gorgeous Newport Casino and Tennis Club.  White's career ended violently with his very public execution by Harry K. Thaw in 1906.  The sensational trial that followed inspired several Hollywood movies.  Photo taken in 1994 by Howard J. Partridge.
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