If you've enjoyed following the exciting news behind the acquisition of the rare historical photos of Frank Lloyd Wright's Taliesin, here's your chance to play an active role in helping to secure an equally rare album of Taliesin-related photos. Find out how after the jump...
As Jack writes:
"Help would be appreciated. The need is $5,000, and I have $1,500 at the moment. Even small donations would help (thirty-five $100 donations would put us where we need to be), and I think [PrairieMod readers] could help significantly.
Why buy the album? First, it shows how Wright physically connected the old Hillside gym building (which was transformed into a boys dorm) to the new 1902 school/gym building. Everyone who knew about the connection (severed in 1932-33) is either dead or has not been found. And now there is a picture that proves it.
Second, the album shows how Wright designed the Hillside elevations (the I-shaped building) to achieve both the physical connection to one of the pre-existing buildings and to mask two older buildings themselves. The height of the Assembly Room wing exceeds the height of the old gym building; the height of the new gym (now the theater) masks the West Cottage. So the old buildings somewhat dictated Wright's Hillside design and its elevations and siting. Who knew he was trying to hide something?
Third, it shows student life, a student room, course work (there has to have been a photography segment in some course because one of the Hillside classrooms had a subsidiary darkroom), and the students' love of the place. (It was a gift to the creator's grandmother. He was Cecil Weldon Smith of Clifton, Illinois, and the album was a Christmas gift for his grandmother--as indicated on the endpaper at the front of the album. And we need to know a lot more about him and his family so that we can figure out how it ended up in a Maine bookstore.
People who pledge at this time will receive a tax deduction through the Wisconsin Historical Foundation after pledges are redeemed. The pledgers will receive a formal letter from the foundation asking for redemption, and they will receive something for IRS purposes once they have redeemed their pledges. Money does not have to be sent now.
The Wisconsin Historical Foundation will purchase the album, then give it to the Wisconsin Historical Society for its photo archives--just as happened with the Taliesin album in 2005 (remember that?) and with the recent 25 photos from the Fuermann studio that were acquired earlier in March. (I saw the photos today for the first time in preparation for a television broadcast, and they're terrific in detail they provide. You can count the cabbages in the garden.)"
It's a really exciting opportunity to play an active roll in helping to save a piece of Wright-related history that will inform further study and appreciation of Taliesin.
So how can PrairieMod readers get in touch with Jack with their pledges?
E-mail: Holzhueter@uwalumni.com. Phone: (608) 767-2280. Jack needs the pledger's name, full address, e-mail address, phone number, and amount of pledge. (he does not need credit card information; that can be supplied to the Wisconsin Historical Foundation once it contacts pledgers to redeem their pledges.) Gifts of at least $100 and up will ensure a successful campaign to save these important photos!
And, if you pledge your support let me know at firstname.lastname@example.org so that PrairieMod can say "Thanks" and send you an extra "little something" to sweeten the deal!
Image via taliesin.edu