"THREE PHOTOGRAPHERS -- ONE FAMILY"
An exhibit of the works of Aaron Padwee, Lynn Padwee and Michael Padwee
|Aaron Padwee "Rotterdam Buildings, 1994"|
|Michael Padwee "Mildendo"|
|Lynn Padwee "Uh, Oh!"|
The Maison Jamaer in Brussels
In 2017 I, and other ceramic tile enthusiasts, received an email from Belgian architect Martin Vandevoorde:
"I'm an architect working in the restoration of the architectural heritage[ of] Belgium.
|Jamaer House. (Photo credit: Johan Mares; http://www.belgiumview.com/belgiumview/tl3/view0000186.php4)|
"Our office has followed the restoration of the Jamaer House, in Brussels. This is a wonderful eclectic house from the 19th century.
"One of his highlights was a Minton tiles decor from 1874-1875 by John Moyr Smith and other designers. Unfortunately the tiles were stolen before the [restoration work began].
"The new owner of the Jamaer house, Mr. Alain Blond, has found forty tiles from the sixty-one originals. We [are helping] him to find some pictures of the last in order to reproduce them.
"An artisan can reproduce the tiles but he needs illustrations in high quality (300 dpi). We are searching after owner[s of these tiles] who would [be willing] to scan their tiles. Some pictures of the missing tiles are already in our possession.
"Maybe some Minton tiles have [crossed] the Atlantic. I think about the Bethesda Terrace [in Central Park].
"The researches about the Jamaer house have allowed us to write the listing below. The missing tiles are :
- Water Nymphs : marine nymph seated on a rock with a shell in her hands.
- Water Nymphs : marine nymph with a fish on her right and a sea horse on her left.
- Water Nymphs : profile marine nymph playing with a fish on her right.
- Water Nymphs : marine nymph looking at herself in a mirror.
- Fairy Tales : "Beauty and the Beast" - John Moyr Smith.
"I hope you can help us. If not, do you have any contact information?" (email from Martin Vandevoorde to Michael Padwee dated July 6, 2017)
"The architect Pierre Victor Jamaer [(1852-1902)] obtained planning permission to build his private home in 1874. He drew up the plans himself, adopting a Flemish Neo-Renaissance style, although in his work he frequently confined himself to the Neo-Gothic style, as seen in the Maison du Roi/Broodhuis and in his restoration of the Eglise de la Chapelle/Kapellekerk. The brick walls were richly faced with blue stone, which not only highlights the joints but also enhances the plinth course, with its bosses, while the front door was given an opulent-looking oculus and the bay windows have moulded surrounds, likewise featuring bosses. Accentuating the verticality of the structure, a central wooden bow window extends over two floors, set on corbels in the form of reclining lions. It supports a loggia with a balustrade, featuring ornate wooden decoration and surmounted by a gabled double saddle roof. Inside, the architect gave particular attention to the decoration, installing a beautiful staircase with a wrought iron bannister, a Louis XVI style parlour and a Neo-Renaissance style dining room with an impressive fireplace. The preponderance of stuccowork, mosaics, decorative ironwork, polished marble and enamelled ceramics serves to create an opulent interior with a unique atmosphere. The house recently underwent an exemplary restoration process, carried out by a genuine enthusiast." ("Private house owned by the architect Pierre Victor Jamaer"; https://visit.brussels/site/en /sites/heritage/place/Private-house-owned-by-the-architect-Pierre-Victor-Jamaer)
A real estate company further described this property:
"'The house Jamaer - that Paul-Victor Jamaer, architect of the City of Brussels, ...designed for himself - presents exceptional dimensions and some peculiarities for a period manor house: 725 square meters, ceilings to more than 4 meters, a facade nearly 8 meters wide, an elevator, five levels, a cave at the bottom of a garden of 180 square meters ... . This house represents the architecture of the late 19th century. An eclectic style, we have stone, we have a metal staircase that goes up to the top floor... . Not to mention the woodwork, moldings, period tiles, floors, wallpapers, two lions carved under the vast balcony... . In short, everything that made the grandeur of Brussels architecture', explains Daniel Ahrend, of the real estate agency Barnes... ." (a google translation of Karim Fadoul, "Bruxelles: la maison Jamaer est en vente pour 2,3 millions d'euros", 25 Juin 2018; https://www.rtbf.be/info/ regions/detail_bruxelles-la-maison-jamaer-est-en-vente-pour-2-3-millions-d-euros?id=9955117)
|Tiles on the exterior of Jamaer House. (Photo Credit: "Brussels buildings: Maison Jamaer", WeLoveBrussels, October 27, 2016; https://welovebrussels.org/2016/10/brussels-buildings-maison-jamaer/)|
"Pierre-Victor Jamaer was promoted as the architect of the city in 1847 (which he held until 1895) and he played an important role in the restoration of several houses on the Grand Place – most notably the Maison du Roi (King’s House) in the neo-gothic style." ("Brussels buildings: Maison Jamaer", WeLoveBrussels, October 27, 2016; https://welovebrussels.org/2016/10/ brussels-buildings-maison-jamaer/)
By March 2019 the restoration of Maison Jamaer was completed, and the house was repurposed as a bed and breakfast.
|Minton tiles along one wall.|
|Minton tiles on the other side of the fireplace.|
|Detail of some Minton tiles. (Credit for three photos: Martin Vandevoorde)|
Martin Vandevoorde sent another email to us on March 27:
"After almost as many months as there are tiles on the walls, I'm very proud to announce to you the end of the restoration of the Jamaer House in Brussels.
"All of you have help[ed] us in our researches to resurrect a beautiful decor from the nineteenth century. The Minton's tiles have a showroom in Brussels again." (Email from Martin Vandevoorde to Michael Padwee dated March 27, 2019)
Alain Blond, the owner of Maison Jamaer at the time of it's restoration has recently placed the Maison Jamaer on the market. Mr. Blond is quoted by the news agency RTBF as saying:
"'It is against my heart that I decided to put it back for sale', [explains Blond]..., the person who made sure that this exceptional property, left abandoned after 2009, became a lighthouse in the district... . A lighthouse as it was in 1876, at the time of its construction in an eclectic style that prefigures art nouveau. The careful restoration under the supervision of Monuments and Sites has lasted nearly five years." (a google translation of Karim Fadoul, "Bruxelles: la maison Jamaer est en vente pour 2,3 millions d'euros", 25 Juin 2018; https://www.rtbf.be/info/ regions/detail_bruxelles-la-maison-jamaer-est-en-vente-pour-2-3-millions-d-euros?id=9955117)
LINKS TO MY PAST BLOG ARTICLES
"A Possible Early Sketch for one of Frederick Dana Marsh's Marine Grill Murals" and a new exhibit.
"The Commercial and Personal Art Tiles of Rafael Guastavino, Jr.: Part II"
"The Lower East Side and Bialystoker Landsmanshaftn"
"The Identification of United States Art Tiles" and three new resources
"Tile Advertisements in the Paris Métro" and "SAVED!!! The Empire State Dairy Tile Murals in Brooklyn, New York"
"The Sevillian tile style: Catalogo de Azulejos de Estilo Sevillano"
"Bits and Pieces: Updates for the Lever House, the Kesner Building and 2116 Ditmas Avenue, Brooklyn" and an obituary for Robert Pinart
"The Commercial and Personal Art Tiles of Rafael Guastavino, Jr." (Part I)
"Art Deco Commercial Architecture: Montgomery Ward’s Mid-Size Department Stores"
"Tessellations: Islamic Tile Patterns and M.C. Escher"
"Grant's Tomb, the Community and the Gaudi-esque benches of Pedro Silva" AND A request for help
"A Factory As It Might Be" and the 2016 Ortner Preservation Awards
The Atlantic Terra Cotta Company and the Beginnings of Polychrome Terra Cotta Use
Bits and Pieces: The Brooklyn-Battery Tunnel and following up on the James N. Gamble House and the Charles Volkmar Overmantle Mural
Art Deco Buildings and Their Lobbies: the Chrysler Building, the Film Center Building and the Kent Garage/Sofia Brothers Storage Warehouse
ARCHITECTURAL MURALS OF LUMEN MARTIN WINTER and a REPORT ON THE EMPIRE STATE DAIRY BUILDING
The Heart of the Park: Bethesda Terrace and its suspended Minton Tile ceiling
A Landmarks hearing was held on July 19, 2016...
Two Restorations: The City Hall Subway Station and the Tweed Courthouse
Egyptian, Moorish and Middle Eastern Ornamentation Used In Art Deco Terra Cotta in New York City, and Empire State Dairy Update
Wall Murals in Brooklyn: A Mini Survey
Inside Prospect Park: The park's Rustic, Classical and other Internal Architecture
Herman Carl Mueller in Titusville and Trenton, New Jersey; A Charles Volkmar Discovery in Clifton, New Jersey
A Book Review and New Discoveries and Updates-II: Jean Nisan, Ceramic Tile Artist
Polychrome Terra Cotta Buildings in Newark, New Jersey
New Discoveries-I: The Tiled House of Jere T. Smith
Introducing the Stained and Dalle de Verre Glass Art of Robert Pinart
Bits and Pieces: Polychrome Terra Cotta- and Tile-Clad Buildings
Socialist and Labor Architecture and Iconography in New York City
Bits and Pieces: Two Mosaics--Hamden, CT and Manchester, NH
The Renaissance Casino and Ballroom Complex in Harlem: Another Tunisian Tile Installation Headed for Demolition
Clement J. Barnhorn and the Rookwood Pottery
The Woolworth Building
The Mosaic Art of Hildreth Meière
Lost Tile Installations: The Tunisian Tiles of the Chemla Family
The Grueby Children's Murals on East 104th Street
The Experimental Lustre Tiles of Rafael Guastavino, Jr.
Bits and Pieces: Two "E"s--Eltinge and Elks; and more about Jean Nison
The Ceramic Tiles and Murals of Jean Nison
Pleasant Days in Short Hills: A Rookwood Wonderland
Architectural Ceramics in the Queen City
Isaac Broome: Innovation and Design in the Tile Industry after the Centennial Exhibition
"Immigration on the Lower East Side": A Public Arts Mural Created by Richard Haas
Movie Palaces-Part 2: The Loews 175th Street Theatre
Béton-Coignet in New York: The New York and Long Island Coignet Stone Company
Michelin House, London
Movie Palaces, Part 1: Loew's Valencia Theatre
An Architectural and Ceramic Tour of Istanbul - Part II
The Tiles of Fonthill Castle
An Architectural and Ceramic Tour of Istanbul - Part I
Tiled Facades in Madrid
Nineteenth Century Brooklyn Potteries
Ernest Batchelder in Manhattan
Leon Victor Solon: Color, Ceramics and Architecture
Architectural Art Tiles in Reading, Pennsylvania
Charles Lamb and Charles Volkmar
Kansas City Architecture - II
Kansas City Architecture - I
Westchester County--Atwood and Grueby
Modern Houses in New Caanan, Connecticut
PPG Place, Pittsburgh
Aluminum City Terrace, New Kensington, Pennsylvania
Newark's WPA Tile Murals: “Fine Art is an Important Part of Everyday Life”
Public Art Programs in New York City: The CETA Tile Murals at Clark Street
Concrete and Tiles-I: Moyer, Mercer, Murosa
The Café Savarin and the Rookwood Pottery; Chocolate Shoppe Rebounds
Architectural Ceramics of Henry Varnum Poor
Herman Carl Mueller and the Church of St. Thomas the Apostle
Meet Me at the Astor
The Mikvah Under 5 Allen Street; "Historic Hall" Apartments Revisited
Some Moravian Tile Sites in New York
Brooklyn's International Tile Company
Subway Tiles-Part III, the Squire Vickers Era
Subway Tiles-Part II, Heins and LaFarge
Subway Tiles--Part I, Guastavino tiles
Trent in New York-Part III, Historic Hall Apartment House
American Encaustic Tiling Company-Part II, Artists' Tiles
Trent in New York-Part II, a Dey Street Restaurant
American Encaustic Tiling Company-Part I, Tile Showrooms
Trent in New York-Part I, The Bronx Theatre
Fred Dana Marsh's Tiles
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