C. R. Ashbee Architect, Designer, and Romantic Socialist Alan Crawford

Publication date:
01 Sep 2005
Yale University Press
512 pages: 241 x 171mm
200 b-w + 20 color illus.
Sales territories:


Charles Robert Ashbee—architect, designer, social reformer, and a major force behind the Arts and Crafts Movement—was one of the most significant figures in British artistic and cultural life at the turn of the century. Inspired by the Romantic anti-industrialism of John Ruskin and William Morris, Ashbee started a small craft workshop in the East End of London in 1888 called the Guild of Handicraft. He not only made it a place where work could be satisfying and creative, but in 1902 boldly moved the Guild’s workshops out to the idyllic Cotswold town of Chipping Campden. Utilizing the often vivid journals kept by Ashbee and his wife, Janet, the book documents Ashbee’s life and work, the story of the Guild, and the part Ashbee played in a wide range of reform movements.

Alan Crawford is a freelance writer.

'[A] handsome production, with a clear layout and a generous number of illustrations. This is only part of its appeal, however, as most Yale art books share these design qualities. The reputation of the book lies, as readers quickly discover, in the enourmously impressive depth of Crawford's background research and his skill in delivering this wealth of material in an absorbing narrative. ...This book is unquestionably a key text on the Arts and Crafts Movement.' - The Art Book