Most Beautiful Room
A site dedicated to the visual analysis of lost architecture and art
Half-scale guilloché detail carved by the architect in Indiana Limestone

email: info-at-mostbeautifulroom-dot-com

phone: six-zero-nine, 865, one-four-eight-three


Richard Chenoweth is an architect, artist, and architectural historian. He has been teaching at Mississippi State University since 2018.

This website is dedicated to his architectural research which is based on digital invesitigation of original sources. His most recent project was his digital investigation of the Egyptian-style Library of Congress as designed by B. Henry Latrobe in 1808. Richard presented a paper on this project at the 2021 SESAH Conference in Natchez MS.

He recently sold a painting to the State of New Jersey for a new State Department of Health building. His painting Morning on the Millstone was one of thirteen selected for the new building through a triple-juried selection process from 650 entries. His recently completed commission for a bas relief portrait of the Poet John Keats won an award from the Portrait Society of America in 2017.


Lourie & Chenoweth LLC won an international architectural design competition in 2001 for a new prototype metro canopy for the Washington Metro Area Transit Authority's (WMATA) Metro Canopy Program. Richard was lead designer on the competition and the Pilot Program as the team refined the steel and glass prototype. Eventually, Richard and Jon designed and built about fifty of the canopies across the Washington DC region, creating an instant icon and symbol of the Metro system. There are a few more still underway including a ninety-foot diameter glass dome at Dupont North Station and six canopies for National Park Service property, including the National Mall.

Richard also specializes in residential architecture, and using a typological approach, is adept at both historical and modern languages. Good house design is a creative solution to a set of challenging requirements and is not necessarily a certain style. But it can be. A client's lifestyle and needs will be the foremost requirement. The house also must be well-planned, efficient, and structurally logical. It also must respond to resilient and sustainable construction practices. The house might reflect the materiality of its surroundings or its region. But a house can do more. It can be an expression of its own presence within nature, a part of the landscape. Or, it might be a more formal expression of how one lives, or aspires to live, as expressed by traditional designs.


In 2001, Richard won the Gabriel Prize for the study of French architecture. The Gabriel Prize funded a three month sabbatical to France. The purpose of the Prize is to examine architecture graphically, through drawing and painting, within the context of a self-devised program of study. Richard stayed mostly in Paris, drawing 18th century buildings and landscapes experienced and written about by Thomas Jefferson, or ones that Jefferson may have known. French architectural ideas appear in Monticello, the University of Virginia, and the U.S. Capitol.

All content © 2021 Richard Chenoweth except as noted