Monday, November 22, 2010

Extra Texture

David Ireland


I've just returned from a trip to Charleston and Wadmalaw Island. For the first time I was able to visit my mural installed at the Branford-Horry House (built c. 1755-ish) and I oversaw the installation of a rather large work of mine on Wadmalaw, (just completed November 2010), but I'll explore those projects in later posts. Here I want to delve into the texture of the Aiken-Rhett House, a place I visited in the late afternoon of my last day in town.





Throughout my stay I was rather engaged with the installation of my mural, making the trek out to Wadmalaw every day and wondering if I was going to see much of Charleston, the inside of it anyway. I know of and have previously visited a number of house museums in and around Charleston but there was that one that stood out in my mind. "I want to go to that run down one" I told people. Oh yes, they knew it but it was up to me to finally figure out it was the Aiken-Rhett which fortunately was just a few blocks from my hotel.





Brilliant golden autumn light and hardly anyone around to bother me. So it was a magical visit to a house that Antoni Tapies and David Ireland could only dream of.
Antoni Tapies
No photography allowed so being the artist scofflaw I am set my digital camera to silent and snapped away. The place is so thrilling to me, absolutely thrilling.


To be turned loose with a little self guided audio tour and each room I entered all to myself: I love this house! Tell me why do suppose that is?


Furthermore:

I found some wonderful photos on the Library of Congress website.
There are a couple of excellent blog posts at a great site I just found called The Architecturalist.
And Glenn Keyes Architects had a hand in the preservation of the house. More about that firm later.

10 comments:

  1. Scott, is it that you can invision what the rooms were, or could become?

    xoxo
    Karena

    Art by Karena

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  2. Hi Karena,

    It was sort of a rhetorical question but in fact I love this house exactly as it is.

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  3. I love it, too. One knows better in such places what the original space was like, rather than in more complete restorations. when I'm in a space like this, I'm more aware of all the things from which I'm separated by only one dimension.

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  4. The atmosphere is very evocative of past lives but I really love it because it's like one big walk in Tàpies painting.

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  5. I am always so taken by houses forgotten in time....when I was growing up, there were several I regularly explored....all now disappeared or fixed up beyond recognition. The Aiken Rhett house is indeed transporting

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  6. I do think it perfect. it is true about Charleston, and sometimes things are perfect in ruin.

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  7. Really, this place makes me practically giddy. I can hardly even describe it.

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  8. You've got to come to Maine and go to the Olsen House..you would love it...somewhere last year I did a post on it on my blog. Before I started labeling, but I think in September 2009.

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  9. I'd love to come to Maine. I'm really intrigued with Vinalhaven. Do you know it?

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