Richard Norman Shaw

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Richard Norman Shaw

Richard Norman Shaw RA (7 May 1831 – 17 November 1912), sometimes known as Norman Shaw, was a Scottish architect who worked from the 1870s to the 1900s, known for his country houses and for commercial buildings.


Shaw was born in Edinburgh,[1] and trained in the London office of William Burn with George Edmund Street. Shaw attended the Royal Academy classes and received a grounding in classicism. There, he met William Eden Nesfield, with whom he briefly partnered in some architectural designs. In 1854–1856 Shaw travelled with a Royal Academy scholarship, collecting sketches that were published as Architectural Sketches from the Continent, 1858. [2]

In 1863, after sixteen years of training, Shaw opened a practice for a short time with Nesfield. In 1872, he was elected an Associate of the Royal Academy. [2]

Shaw worked, among others, for the artists John Callcott Horsley and George Henry Boughton, and the industrialist Lord Armstrong. He designed large houses such as Cragside, Grim's Dyke, and Chigwell Hall, as well as a series of commercial buildings using a wide range of styles.[2]

Shaw was elected to the Royal Academy in 1877,[2] and co-edited (with Sir Thomas Jackson RA) the 1892 collection of essays, Architecture, a profession or an Art?.[3] He firmly believed it was an art. In later years, Shaw moved to a heavier classical style which influenced the emerging Edwardian Classicism of the early 20th century. Shaw died in London, where he had designed residential buildings in areas such as Pont Street, and public buildings such as New Scotland Yard.

Shaw's early country houses avoided Neo-Gothic and the academic styles, reviving vernacular materials like half timber and hanging tiles, with projecting gables and tall massive chimneys with "inglenooks" for warm seating. Shaw's houses soon attracted the misnomer the "Queen Anne style". As his skills developed, he dropped some of the mannered detailing, his buildings gained in dignity, and acquired an air of serenity and a quiet homely charm which were less conspicuous in his earlier works; half timber construction was more sparingly used, and finally disappeared entirely. [2]

Built work[edit]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Shaw, Richard Norman". Who's Who. Vol. 59. 1907. p. 1591. 
  2. ^ a b c d e Chisholm 1911.
  3. ^ Richard Norman Shaw, editor: Architecture: A profession or an art: thirteen short essays on the qualifications and training of architects, London, Murray, 1892. Contributors include: R. Norman Shaw, J. T. Micklethwaite, Reginald Blomfield, G.F. Bodley, Mervyn Macartney, Ernest Newton, Edward S. Prior, John R. Clayton, Basil Champneys, W.R. Lethaby, W.B. Richmond, Gerald Horsley and T.G. Jackson.
  4. ^ a b John Bold; Tanis Hinchcliffe; Scott Forrester (27 January 2009). Discovering London's Buildings: With Twelve Walks. frances lincoln ltd. pp. 105–. ISBN 978-0-7112-2918-1. Retrieved 1 July 2012. 
  5. ^ a b "Survey of London: volume 37: Northern Kensington". British History Online. Retrieved 28 June 2012. 


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