Edward Schroeder Prior (1857–1932) was an architect who was instrumental in establishing the arts and crafts movement. He was one of the foremost theorists of the second generation of the movement, writing extensively on architecture, art, craftsmanship and the building process and subsequently influencing the training of many architects.
He was a major contributor to the development of the Art Workers Guild and other organisations that lay at the heart of the movement’s attempts to bring art, craftsmanship and architecture closer together. His scholarly work, particularly A History of Gothic Art in England (1900), achieved international acclaim. He became one of the leading architectural educationalists of his generation. As Slade Professor of Art at Cambridge he established the Cambridge School of Architectural Studies.
Initially his buildings show the influence of his mentor Norman Shaw and Philip Webb, but Prior experimented with materials, massing and volume from the start of his independent practice. He developed a style that was intensely individual and a practical philosophy of construction that was perhaps nearer to Ruskin's ideal of the "builder designer" than that of any other arts and crafts architect.
The buildings of his maturity, such as The Barn, Exmouth, and Home Place, Kelling are amongst the most original of the period. In St Andrew's Church, Roker he produced his masterpiece, a church that is now recognised as one of the best of the early 20th century.
Prior experimented with unusual plans, massing and volumes and became more and more interested in the nature and use of material and texture. In particular he experimented with reinforced concrete, which was used extensively in Home Place and St Andrew's.
Prior's approach to building was to ensure the use of the best quality materials, developing constructional techniques in partnership with the craftsmen builders. Despite the pioneering use of concrete and experimentation with structural systems, Prior's buildings seem to have relatively few construction and material defects, a tribute to his philosophy and skills.
Read more about Edward Schroeder Prior: Family, Harrow School, Cambridge University, Norman Shaw's Pupil, Practice and Private Life, The Arts and Craft Guilds, Scholarship, Education, Prior The Man, Prior's Writings, Bibliography
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176, 180-86 189-90 Authority control VIAF 878688 Persondata Name Prior, Edward Schroeder Alternative names Short description Date of birth 1857 Place of birth Date of death 1932 ...
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Sure John and I are more than quit.”
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