Matthew Wells: Modelling the Metropolis

The Architectural Model in Victorian London

As London grew in the 19th century, it became the global centre of finance, industrial capitalism, and the British Empire. New buildings, urban spaces, and infrastructural networks were demanded, constructed, and rebuilt. Architectural models were a crucial medium, enabling architects, politicians, and the wider public to conceive the city’s expansion. Based on extensive research in archives, museums, and period publications, this book addresses not just architectural models but also an eclectic range of images and objects – technical products, sculptures, diagrams, engravings, maps, photographs – sketching the politics and aesthetics of 19th-century architecture in London.