San Francisco, California
London, United Kingdom
When & Where
Sir John Soane's Museum
Soane was born in 1753, the son of a bricklayer, and died after a long and distinguished career, in 1837. Soane worked in the offices of George Dance (from 1768 to 1772) and Henry Holland (from 1772 to 1778), before establishing his own architectural practice.
John Soane studied architecture at the Royal Academy of Arts, London and won the Academy's highest accolade, a three-year Travelling Scholarship. The Grand Tour changed his life forever.
Soane designed this house to live in, but also as a setting for his antiquities and his works of art. Here you will discover Egyptian antiquities, fragments of Greek and Roman architecture and friezes, cinerary urns, sarcophagus reliefs, and plaster casts, cork architectural models, classical bronzes, terracottas, vases and mosaics.
After the death of his wife (1815), he lived here alone, constantly adding to and rearranging his collections. Having been deeply disappointed by the conduct of his two sons, one of whom survived him, he determined to establish the house as a museum to which ‘amateurs and students’ should have access. Soane left his house and collections as a gift to the nation, through an act of parliament. When you enter, you will be transported back to 1837, the year Soane died.