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CHUCK KOVACIC ARTS A Breath Of Plein Air
221b BAKER STREET/Los Angeles
BSLA is an authentic sitting room recreation of the famed detective, Sherlock Holmes. Open for private viewing by appointment only.
"Jack-knifed" correspondence, Napoleonic bust and chiming clock await Mr. Holmes' return. A seven percent solution adds its own drama.
A Webley "bulldog" pistol was an inexpensive Belgian firearm favored by many a Victorian gentleman.
Placement between the hearth and window allowed for the quick disposal of any failed chemical experiment.
CHEMIST'S TABLE DETAIL
Surrounded by test tubes and beakers, the 1903 microscope is from a London firm and is ready to aid in any investigations.
Although there is no Canonical mention, many gentlemen considered a sitting room safe a necessity.
Our table features a Tantalus, as well as a selection of mementos gathered from various investigations. Note the elegant buffet lamp.
Victorians had a fascination with nature. Holmes would have appreciated the irony of a displayed bat.
These rare predecessors of the seltzer bottle are difficult to find nowadays. They were prone to crack and even explode when charged; as a result, a sturdier wire mesh replaced the wicker weave as time wore on. The gazogene on the right is a particularly rare and intact example that dates to 1851, manufactured by the Berit Company in Paris. The settee was an Anglo-Japanese design popular in 1870.
When properly charged with the required additive powder, the gazogene would complement any beverage. Such were the beginnings of the modern cocktail.
Our table is set for afternoon tea. A covered dish offers a tempting treat while an English bow-back chair provides proper seating. A "tin dispatch-box" awaits investigation.
In a nod to Holmes' favorite hobby, beekeeping. A close look at the 1881 lamp reveals a bee gathering. A rare volume on the subject awaits!
BSLA's rarest item is a set of mother-of-pearl handled and silver flatware. The "SH" inscription was a unique London flea market find.
A refreshing drink, a thoughtful pipe and cuffs for any culprit! Each will be needed when contemplating the paw cast suggestive of a "gigantic hound."
Holmes disdained the convention of proper seating. Still, coordinated parlor sets were considered an indication of social status. A variety of reading material is at the ready, aided by the comfort offered by a "bulldog" pillow.
This early oil fueled flashlight was first issued to London's famed police force. The brass example was of heavier construction for use aboard ships and called a "boat" or "signal" lantern. Many examples were manufactured in New York by the Dietz Company.
A student lamp, an early telephone and stationery items typically found in a Victorian desk await the detectives hand.
The eras' Encyclopedias' offer useful insights to terminology and phrasing. This mint edition dates to 1906 and was published in Endinbourgh. The great wax seal is that of Charles II and backs up the "Mazarin" stone.
BSLA is privileged to display four original steel engravings of the fabled Reichenbach Falls of Switzerland. These rare prints form an appropriate background for an "alpenstock." To the left, boxing gloves and a French "Legion of Honor" certificate acknowledge Mr. Holmes' other abilities.
BAKER STREET, CIRCA 1880
More than a century ago, today's BAKER STREET consisted of Upper Baker Street, Baker Street and York Place. Its popular townhouses were first constructed beginning in 1720. Fine examples of this Georgian architecture remain today.
LONDON TOWNHOUSE, CIRCA 1880
BSLA features a number of period townhouse photos. Awnings have no Canonical reference, yet, here they are!
PRESENT DAY TOWNHOUSE
The townhouses of the Marylebone district are largely intact and well maintained. The 18th century developer Henry William Portman saw that the residences were well built in a period before building codes.
After considerable research and numerous visits to London, I sculpted a representation of a townhouse row. Such groupings were meant to mimic the facades of more imposing buildings. See if you can find the "Man in the Window."
My research has yet to discover any evidence of a "bow" window along Baker Street. Such an expensive architectural detail would only be found on higher end construction such as found two blocks east along Abbey Road. However, for my fellow Sherlockians, BSLA has imagined it!
"Two broad windows" as described in SIGN. Architecturally correct to those found along Baker Street.
Upon occasion, BSLA has been the site for commercial production. Its detail has impressed nearby Hollywood art directors.
Here at BSLA, my investigations continue. Fellow Sherlockians are always welcome to visit.
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