This Portland stone chimney piece, saved from the crumbling ruins of a Robert Adam interior, is offered by Westland London priced at £80,000 + VAT.
Dalquharran Castle was completed c.1790 for Thomas Kennedy of Dunure and was seen as one of the finest examples of the ‘castle style’ of architecture devised by Robert Adam (1728-92) before it fell into disrepair. The celebrated Scottish architect designed more than 60 buildings in this style, which combined a robust castle exterior with a delicate classical-style interior.
Featuring a gently concave design, the chimneypiece was designed for the ambitious round tower library at Dalquharran. As recorded in a letter from 1790, Adam entrusted the carving to the Dutch stonemason Pieter Mathias van Gelder (1739-1809) who also worked with the architect on several other ambitious projects.
The library still retains fragments of the original cornice, which share Adam’s design of the opposing sphinxes carved by van Gelder on the central tablet of the chimney piece.