Martin Wood explores Nancy Lancaster's substantial contribution to the arts of interior decoration and garden design.
Nancy Lancaster (1897-1994) was one of the premier tastemakers of the 20th century and essentially created what is known as the English Country House Style, which emphasized a mixture of chintzes and antique furniture. The owner of Colefax and Fowler, an influential British decorating firm that codified this quintessentially English look, Lancaster had an assured sense of scale, boldness, a sharp wit, and an instinctive understanding of how to make a house mellow, elegant, and unpretentious. She carried the same clean elegance into the garden, where she worked in a formal yet romantic neo-Georgian style.
Wood discusses Lancaster's houses and gardens including Mirador in Virginia; Kelmarsh Hall in Northamptonshire, England; Ditchley Park, in Oxfordshire; and Haseley Court. He discusses Lancaster's remarkable personal life, her dynamic design partnership with John Fowler, and her interactions with friends, including her aunt Nancy Astor, Duff and Lady Diana Cooper, David Niven, and Winston Churchill. This illustrated lecture includes images of Lancaster, her houses, her gardens, and her friends by celebrated artists and photographers, including John Singer Sargent, Cecil Beaton, and Horst P. Horst.
This lecture was cosponsored by the Royal Oak Foundation.