Learning from Las Palmas: Spanish architectural influence in the British Empire

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


Until recently the overseas empires of Spain and Britain occupied largely unrelated historiographies, particularly with respect to art and architecture. This has tended to obscure the cross-fertilisation of ideas that took place at times between these two empires. One example was in the nineteenth century, at the relative height of British imperial power, when the English Church sought to extend its influence by erecting new and imposing churches across the British world. The problem of adapting ecclesiastical buildings to climatic conditions that were entirely different from those experienced in the British Isles was acute, particularly in tropical environments. In looking around for solutions to this problem, English ecclesiologists seized upon Southern European traditions in ecclesiastical architecture, especially those of Spain. This paper will reassess this influence, retracing the impact these strategies tested over two-hundred years earlier in the Spanish empire had on architects and clergymen working in the British empire.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusUnpublished - 2015
EventCAA (College Art Association) Annual Conference - New York, United States
Duration: 11 Feb 201514 Feb 2015


ConferenceCAA (College Art Association) Annual Conference
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityNew York


  • architecture
  • empire
  • Britain
  • Spain
  • ecclesiology


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