The Lutyens Trust America is an educational, not-for-profit organization (501(c) (3) status pending) which acts as a source of information aimed at enhancing the appreciation, study, and conservation of the works of Sir Edwin Lutyens O.M., K.C.I.E., P.R.A., who died on New Year’s Day 1944. His motto was Metiendo Vivendum – “By Measure We Live.”
Born on March 29, 1869, Edwin Lutyens started work as an architect in his twentieth year, 1888, and as he worked persistently, with very little time for other interests, his output is enormous. He designed over three-dozen major English country houses and altered and added to many more. He remodeled Lindisfarne Castle and built Castle Drogo; both castles are now owned by the British National Trust. Lutyens also designed Gertrude Jekyll’s home, Munstead Wood, and together they created well over a hundred gardens. In addition to the Cenotaph in Whitehall, Thiepval Arch on the Somme and many other memorials and cemeteries for the First World War, Lutyens designed the Viceroy’s House (now Rashtrapati Bhavan), New Delhi, the British Embassy in Washington, D.C., Johannesburg Art Gallery, and many other large and distinguished buildings. The final great work of his life was his design for the Cathedral of Christ the King in Liverpool of which only the crypt was built. But he also loved more light-hearted activities, and immersed himself in delightful minor projects, such as Queen Mary’s Dolls’ House, now in Windsor Castle, as well as designs for furniture, lighting, and stage settings.
The Lutyens Trust (UK) was founded on December 20, 1984 following the success of the Arts Council exhibition devoted to the work of Edwin Lutyens held at the Hayward Gallery in London in 1981. The founding trustees were Colin Amery (chairman), Jane Brown, Roderick Gradidge, Mervyn Miller, Mary Lutyens, Daniel O’Neill, Margaret Richardson, and Gavin Stamp.
The Hayward Gallery exhibit came on the heels of efforts within the United States to celebrate the legacy of architectural design left by Edwin Lutyens. A small photographic exhibition, proposed by Allan Greenberg and organized by Arthur Drexler, was held at the Museum of Modern Art in New York between October 1978 and January 1979. In 1978, a Fiftieth-Anniversary dinner was held at the British Embassy in Washington, D.C. to celebrate the only Lutyens design built in the United States. The speakers at this event were Philip Johnson and Hugh Casson.
In response to the continuing admiration of Sir Edwin Lutyens within the America design community, efforts to form The Lutyens Trust America began in 2017. The initial Board members are Martin Lutyens, Robin Prater, Candia Lutyens Peterson, Judith Prause, and Marcos Lutyens, with Ted Bosley and Tom Kligerman serving as Advisory Board members. The Lutyens Trust America is a separate organization from the Lutyens Trust. However, the two organizations work closely together and support similar goals.
The objectives of the Lutyens Trust America, like those of the Lutyens Trust in the UK, are to promote the preservation in perpetuity of any buildings, gardens, or objects designed by Edwin Lutyens (including those gardens designed in partnership with Miss Gertrude Jekyll) and generally to protect and preserve their existing character and amenities; to inform and educate the public about Lutyens buildings, gardens, or objects so as to increase their appreciation and understanding of the architectural qualities involved; and to undertake and promote any form of research in connection with Lutyens buildings, garden, and objects, and any other related matter and to provide for the dissemination and publication of the results for the benefit of the public.
If you are in sympathy with what we are trying to do, we would welcome you as a Member. We celebrate the beginning of each new year on March 29, Sir Edwin Lutyens’s birthday. You will be kept in touch with our activities via our regular newsletters. For details on how to become a member or on donating to The Lutyens Trust America visit the Contact page.