the home of the inimitable art historian mr john richardson, most known for his picasso biographies in albany london, is a very sought after address indeed. once the piccadilly mansion of frederick the duke of york and albany had to be reconfigured and expanded to a series of apartments due to financial concern. these flats were made available to the gentlemen, bachelors and widowers of distinction. i suppose mr r qualified as one. the original conversion was done by henry holland who designed these chambers with careful thought as to include a hidden pasage for servants, later to be called the mistress’s walk for obvious reasons. mr hollands refurbishments are a refreshing change towards simplicity after the excesses of robert adam. the apartment’s atmospheric appeal lies in the fact that it is decidedly un-decorated and holds true to the english talent for creating comfort with out seeming to try to hard. the furniture and objets seem to be collected by inclination and since it follows no particular fashion they are difficult to date. my favourite is the ex bedroom bathroom conversion which includes mahogany bathroom augments and wallpaper pugin designed for the houses of parliament. the ex dining room bedroom conversion has a castiglione and a leger print inscribed to mr r hanging above the french empire bed in front of a double door hidden by matching fabric curtains and a delightful 19th century adjustable brass table. the richly appointed drawing room testifies to the comment of horace walpole you cannot call it magnificent; it is the taste and propriety that strike. amen.

AD 11/79