Louis Osman was born in Exeter 1914 and studied drawing at the Slade School of Art and trained at the Bartlett School of Architecture. In 1935 he became a FRIBA and won a scholarship which took him to Syria on a British Museum expedition. During the war he was a major in intelligence and in 1940 married Dilys Roberts who would later become his enamellist. He registered his hallmark in 1957 after his friend Gerald Benney had encouraged him to work in silver and he managed to excel in being a goldsmith and medallist as well as continuing his career as an architect. He designed the treasury to hold silver at Lincoln Cathedral and produced the Welsh gold crown for the investiture of the Prince of Wales in 1969 and in 1976, the gold, enamelled casket for the Magna Carta, given by the British government to celebrate the Bicentennial, and now in the Capitol at Washington; and a long succession of magnificent, provocative treasures for the collection at Goldsmiths' Hall. In 'Treasures of the 20th Century' he is quoted '"Mass production does not particularly interest me. I feel that what I do should have its roots in the past but should be completely modern and of today." He only ever worked to private commission throughout his entire life, his work being outside current design trends and entirely of his time.' He often used Britannia silver which is more malleable as well as having a richer colour. Peter Musgrove, Andrew Marsden, Michael Knight all worked with him and Wally Gilbert was with him from 1982-8. Osman died in 1996.
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LOUIS OSMAN Cavendish Square Model
Architectural Wood Model
Cavendish Square London
Model made by Louis Osman in 1950
War damage to Palladian houses owned by the Sisters of the Society of the Holy Child Jesus needed restoration and the 33 year old Louis Osman took it on.
This wood model is of his design for a bridge linking Nos. 12 and 13 and was actually sent to Rome for approval.
(It was delayed in customs for some weeks).
The statue of the Madonna and Child was by Jacob Epstein and unfortunately the original maquette by Epstein is missing from this model.
Height: 61 cm
Width: 33 cm
Depth: 16 cm
Illustrated on page 38 'Louis Osman' by Jenny Moore
Provenence: Acquired when Osman's house Harpton Court, Presteigne was sold by his daughter, Marie-Louise.
Pair Silver Spoons
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Silver and Wood Beaker
(see 'Louis Osman' by Jenny Moore pg 160
for a similar example)
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and see more detailed