A recent article in the Chicago Tribune discusses how a proposed new transmission line of electrical towers by ComEd extending through Ogle, DeKalb, DuPage and Kane counties would negatively impact the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Muirhead Farmhouse. I asked Janet Halstead, Executive Director at the Frank Lloyd Wright Building Conservancy to provide PrairieMod readers with some info on what's being done by the preservation community to try and alter this disturbing development. Read more after the jump...
Last Friday we reported that the efforts to try and stop the demolition of an Edward Dart-designed house in Highland Park, IL. Ben Johnston, who sent us the original heads-up drove by the house over the weekend, found that no time was wasted in demolishing this work of MCM architecture. What a shame.
Image credit: Ben Johnston
The people behind PrairieMod are announcing a new opportunity for geographically dispersed Frank Lloyd Wright enthusiasts to gather on-line and watch FREE daily interviews with well-known scholars. This unique on-line gathering is called the Wright Society Virtual Summit, and the inaugural event, STARTING WRIGHT, will explore Wright’s early roots to gain a deeper understanding of his design genius. It takes place Wednesday, March 25 to Thursday, March 26, 2015. Get all the details and register for FREE by following the link.
Image credit: Lisa Kelly/PrairieMod
Ben J. sends a link to the bad news that the Highland Park City Council has given the OK for demolition to proceed on a 1959 Edward D. Dart-designed house on Lake Cook Road. It's another example of how Mid-century Modernism is not being valued and as a result we lose significant examples to the bulldozer. Read more here.
Image credit: Karen Berkowitz/Pioneer Press
Frank Lloyd Wright's Hollyhock House officially re-opens to the public today after an extensive $4.4 million restoration. The Los Angeles Times recently interviewed Jeffrey Herr, curator of Hollyhock House, on what makes the house unique and the surprises they found during the restoration process. Read it here and then go visit!
Image credit: Joshua White / JWPictures.com
Eric Nordstrom, owner and founder of Urban Remains and the bldg. 51 museum announced yesterday that the printed version of the highly anticipated bldg. 51 museum architectural artifact book (which your PrairieMod editor helped in the production of) will be available for purchase in March 2015. copies of the profusely illustrated, full color book will be available at the Urban Remains store and/or can be ordered online through the Urban Remains or bldg. 51 website. in addition, a book launch party will be held at a Chicago venue that will contain an exhibition of highlighted artifacts found in the book. Stay tuned for additional information in the coming weeks. More info here.
Image via Eric Nordstrom
Just a reminder that stained glass artist Larry Zgoda's exhibition at Iannelli Studios Heritage Center in Park Ridge runs through the 22nd of February. Larry will be at the studios this coming Sunday, February 15, 2015 from 1pm to 4pm to engage in conversations about the work and other topics. Read more about the show here.
Image credit: Anne Lunde
The news has been awash in stories covering the recent nomination by the United States of 10 Frank Lloyd Wright-designed sites to the UNESCO World Heritage List. Without having to link to them all, the Smithsonian recently ran an article that sums up the story that I thought readers would appreciate seeing. Read it here.
Image credit Richard A. Cooke/CORBIS
George J. sends a link to a 1926 Lloyd Wright-designed house in Glendale, CA on the market for $1.05 million. Compared to Lloyd's Sowden or Samuels-Navarro residences, there are not any compelling "Wrightian" architectural overtones to this home visible in the photos. One wonders if they have been stripped out over the years or if it was always this understated. More here.
Image via Curbed LA
I recently received word from Landmarks Illinois that the Lake Bluff Historic Preservation Commission will have a public hearing on February 11, 2015 and if they vote to recommend to the village board landmark designation for the endangered Keck + Keck-designed Blair House, the village board will have its first reading on the matter on February 23, 2015. If the village board votes no on that date, demolition can proceed immediately. More after the jump...
Recently appointed dean of the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture, Aaron Betsky, recently joined the folks at Archinect for one of their Sessions podcast to discuss his plans to make Taliesin the best experimental architecture school in the world, and its role in the shifting landscape of architecture education. Listen to episode fifteen of Archinect Sessions, "Let's be Frank" with Aaron Betsky here.
Image via Archinect
The current owner of the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Buehler House in Orinda, CA has requested the city council reduce his tax burden by $30,000 a year for a decade as part of the program to assist owners of properties designated historic landmarks with the preservation of their buildings. Read more here.
Image via YouTube
Chicago Tribune architecture critic Blair Kamin recently offered an editorial rebuttal in Architectural Record to architecture critic Michael Sorkin's recent defense of the proposed (and controversial) George Lucas Museum of Narrative Art to be sited on the city's sacred lakefront. Read it here.
Image via Lucas Museum of Narrative Art
Zachary M. sends a link to a story in The Oklahoman that showcases the recently restored red earth-toned shingles and repainted silver steel trusses that frame the roof of the Bruce Goff-designed Hopewell Baptist Church (1951) in Oklahoma City. With the roof done, restoration work turns inward with structural repairs to support the auditorium floor. Read and see more here.
Photo by Paul B. Southerland, The Oklahoman
The Atlantic's Citylab recently made the argument that neither New York nor Chicago deserves the title of "Best U.S. Architecture per Square Mile" but it instead belongs to...wait for it...Dallas, TX. I won't bother using the space here to scoff at this proclamation since Curbed Chicago does a pretty good job poking holes in it here.
Image via citylab.com
Curbed recently featured the micro 3D printed Ittyblox buildings on the web-based collective called Shapeways. Produced at a 1:1000 scale, you can collect and build you're own cities, complete with LED light effects for nighttime enjoyment. Of course, the mini model of the Guggenheim released to celebrate the New York MakerFaire is by far my favorite. More here and here.
Image via shapeways.com
wtxl.com reports that the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Clifton and George Lewis House (aka "Spring House") is open the second Sunday of every month from 2-4 pm for tours of the building and the surrounding grounds. It costs $15 a person and children under the age of 12 are free. Follow the link to watch a video and read more. If you would like to learn more about Spring House, you can call 850-321-6417 or visit www.PreserveSpringHouse.org.
Image via wtxl.com
If you live near central Florida, then you won't want to miss a three-part series of lectures given by architecture enthusiast Timothy Totten on Frank Lloyd Wright. They will take place February 10, 17, and the 24 at the W.T. Bland Public Library, 1995 N. Donnelly St., in Mount Dora, FL. All the lectures start at 10:30 am and are free to the public. More info here.
Image via Wikipedia
In conjunction with the recent National Park Service announcement that 10 Frank Lloyd Wright sites across the country have been submitted to UNESCO as a World Heritage nomination, the Unity Temple Restoration Foundation (UTRF) has confirmed that one of them, Unity Temple in Oak Park, IL, will undergo a comprehensive $25 million restoration and that UTRF has launched a fundraising campaign of the same magnitude. More after the jump...
The University of Arkansas Libraries' Special Collections and Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art Library and Archives has put together a new on-line exhibit of materials titled "Fay Jones and Frank Lloyd Wright: Organic Architecture Comes to Arkansas" that focus on Frank Lloyd Wright and E. Fay Jones. The exhibit coincides with what would have been Jones's 94th birthday on Saturday. Check it out here.
Image via digitalcollections.uark.edu
The Daily Herald reports that if the State of Illinois approves a deal between ComEd and Kane County Forest Preserve District officials it will place a $200 million electricity improvement development (including 17 new towers) near Muirhead Springs Forest Preserve...and way too close to the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Muirhead Farmhouse. Read more about this unsettling development here.
Image via The Daily Herald
Newsreview.com reports that there is more than one way to destroy a Richard Neutra building. You can outright demolish it or you can completely smother it through terrible additions and bastardizing changes. The city of Reno has apparently done this to two of their Neutra buildings: The Church Fine Arts Building at the University of Nevada, Reno and the Centennial Coliseum (now known as the Reno Sparks Convention Center). Read more about it here.
Image via newsreview.com
The Organic Architectural and Design Archives (for which you PrairieMod editor is a part of and contributes design on the Journal) has officially received non-profit 501(c)(3) status from the federal government! This is a big step in our efforts to save archival materials associated with organic architects and designers and to open-up access to them for study and appreciation. To learn more about OAD Archives, its mission, and about the Journal of Organic Architecture + Design that we publish, follow the link.
Image via OAD Archives
Taliesin West has announced its Spring 2015 lecture series entitled "Free and Open to the Public" will explore open-source, pro bono, and public space design by some of the world's leading architects and designers. Follow the link to get more info.
Poster by Garth Lindquist & Michael DesBarres. Image via Taliesin West Lecture Series Facebook page.
Mark H. sends a link to a New York Times article about the danger facing the Paul Rudolph-designed Orange County Government Center, in Goshen, NY. While the Brutalist building is hard for many to embrace (including, apparently Orange County government members plotting its demise) it's an important example of MCM architecture that even the World Monuments Fund included on its global watch list alongside landmarks like Machu Picchu and the Great Wall of China. Read more about it here.
Image credit: Fred R. Conrad/The New York Times
When the the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Hollyhock House in LA reopens next month after a long restoration period, architecture lovers will be able to see it over a 24-hour period from Feb. 13-14. The city council is going one step further in and having admission be free during that open house. Read more here and plan your visit here.
Image via wikipedia
The Chicago Tribune reports that historic preservation officials in Lake Bluff, IL will apply for landmark status for the Keck & Keck-designed Blair House (1955), although everyone pretty much acknowledges that it may be an act that only stalls the bulldozer. The house has languished on the market for four years without a buyer and the 27 acres of land are far more valuable than the Modern house that sits on it. You can figure out the rest. Read more here.
Image credit: Susan Benjamin, Village of Lake Bluff
Archpaper.com reports that the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation has chosen former Cincinnati Art Museum director, Aaron Betsky, as the new dean of the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture. He comes with a long list of accolades and replaces outgoing dean Victor Sidy, who returns to private practice. The school is in the midst of a fundraising campaign to decide its accreditation fate, but the article states that the naming of a new dean signals that the FLWF "will continue to award degrees at their Taliesin East and Taliesin West campuses either way, perhaps in partnership with accredited institutions." Read more here.
Image via blog.archpaper.com
RAGO auction house has a gaggle of Frank Lloyd Wright-related materials on the block in their upcoming February 2015 auctions. There are several lots of prints related to projects for Huntington Hartford, ca. 1948 and some reproduction furniture—but the standout item is an original 1905 bronze sconce from the Darwin D. Martin House in Buffalo, NY. We'll see if a collector snaps this piece up or if it will make its way back to the house it was intended for. Check out all of the items here.
Image via RAGO
Curbed LA reports that after six long years of extensive restoration work, the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Barnsdall Residence (aka "Hollyhock House") in Los Angeles, CA will be open again to the public starting February 13, 2015. Can't wait to go and see it again! Read more about it here.
Image via Curbed LA
Author and historian, William Allin Storrer, sends word that a new, single-volume version of Frank Lloyd Wright: Designing Democratic America should be published next week and will shortly thereafter appear on Amazon.com. It contains everything seen in the previous two-part set with the exception of the reduced plans appendices (he hopes to redo that section with better resolution and complete with the houses that will be in the prequel; Frank Lloyd Wright, Creating American Architecture, which is close to completion).
Image via Amazon.com
Curbed Chicago reports that Frank Lloyd Wright's Isidore Heller House (1897) will be having an open house to try and locate a buyer for the Hyde Park beauty. Come see this early Wright masterpiece at the open house this Sunday January 25, 2015 from 12-2pm. More photos and info here.
Images via Curbed Chicago
The Oklahoma State University Museum of Art will host an exhibit on Frank Lloyd Wright's Christian House (aka "Samara") from February 9 — April 21, 2015. Titled "Frank Lloyd Wright's Samara: A Mid-Century Dream Home" it will explores the relationship between an architect and his clients, Dr. John and Kay Christian, as they worked together to create a Usonian dream home. More details here.
Image via museum.okstate.edu
Chuck and Nancy Sweetman will explore Frank Lloyd Wright's career in a presentation at 7 p.m. Monday, February 2, 2015 at the Robert E. McCoy Architectural Center. The presentation will follow Wright’s career chronologically and will include photos of works from across the country. More info here.
Image via stockmanhouse.org
Curbed.com spotlights what is being called the first new Joseph Eichler-designed house built since 1974 that will soon be finished in Palm Springs, California (where no Eichler has existed before). As stated on Curbed: "This first 'Desert Eichler,' a variation adapted from one of Eichler's original blueprints, is being built by Troy Kudlac, a Palm Springs broker and developer who buys, remodels, and resells midcentury homes." Read more about it here and see the house's Zillow page here.
Image via Curbed