Andrea Palladio

Andrea Palladio 1508-1580, was an Italian architect who worked in the Republic of Venice and established a world-wide reputation. He was born in Padua and gained early experience as a stone cutter in the workshops of sculptor Bartolomeo Cavazza da Sossano. He continued working as a mason following a move to Vicenza at the age of 16, eventually finding patronage under the humanist scholar Gian Giorgio Trissino, who encouraged him to study arts and architecture.

Palladio’s own style began to emerge in 1541. Adhering closely to its Greco-Roman inspiration, it is now considered the pinnacle of high renaissance classicism, and Palladio one of the most influential figures in the history of western architecture.

Palladio built rural villas in the province and palaces in the city of Vicenza and churches in Venice, all now under the protection of World Heritage status. The buildings succeeded by reflecting the practical needs and aspirational wishes of their users, combining these with beautiful aesthetics and the mood of the times.

With the publication of the treatise The Four Books of Architecture, in 1570, the influence of the Palladian style spread. It became dominant throughout Europe, and was popularised in England by Inigo Jones, who’s Queen’s House in Greenwich was the first completely classical building in the country. Jones went on to design the Banqueting House in Whitehall, with ceilings painted by Rubens, and the layout of the Covent Garden piazza including St. Paul’s Church on its west side. Palladianism crossed the Atlantic and was championed by Thomas Jefferson in the United States. The Palladian capitol building was completed in 1800, and Palladio was named by congress as the father of American architecture. Palladio’s influence continues to the present day and is sure to endure.

Our version of the Palladio parquet is derived directly from the Four Books of Architecture. As with others of a traditional type, this bold parquetry design is intended to be implemented at a generous scale.

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