The Legacy of Collinson & Lock

First Night Design

This advertisement for Collinson & Lock is from a D’Oyly Carte programme for Gilbert & Sullivan’s The Yeoman of the Guard at the Savoy Theatre in 1888. Collinson & Lock was a prominent furniture company, founded in the 1860s by F G Collinson and G J Lock, which concentrated on Art Nouveau and Aesthetic designs.

The company’s theatrical links are fascinating. Amongst other work, Collinson & Lock were responsible for decorating the new Savoy Theatre in 1881, while their most famous designer was the architect Edward William Godwin (1833-1886) who was inspired to design for the theatre by his affair with the actress Ellen Terry when she was still married to her first husband, the artist George Frederick Watts.

The union produced two children, the distinguished theatre designer, Edward Gordon Craig (1872–1966) and the theatre director, producer, costume designer and sometime actress Edith…

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