100 years ago today, fire and death descended upon Frank Lloyd Wright's Taliesin in Spring Green, WI. Ron McCrea, author of the book Building Taliesin, writes a special piece in Madison's Capitol Times about how the small town rose to meet the devastating chaos with dignity and humanity. Read it here.
Image via Higgins Family
The Sioux City Journal recently featured the story of why the Alfonso Iannelli-sculpted panel depicting the Seventh Commandment ("Thou Shall Not Commit Adultery") was intentionally omitted from the Sioux City County Courthouse in Sioux City, IA. Read about it here and in the newly re-published book on the building and its history, The Woodbury County Courthouse Revealed.
Image via The Sioux City Journal
We learn on Wright Chat that architect Olof Dahlstrand, who designed several beautiful Usonian homes and other buildings in the Carmel, California area, died early Thursday July 17, 2014. Read more about his passing here and then pick up a copy of the book, Olof Dahlstrand: The Usonians here.
Image credit: Eric Luse
Here's a link to an article about MCM architect, Richard Isenhour, who was responsible for several beautiful post-and-beam Modern homes in the Lexington, KY area. His son Larry has written a new book about Isenhour's life and works called The Houses of Richard B. Isenhour: Mid-Century Modern in Kentucky (Butler Books, $45). Read more here.
Image via Butler Books
News reaches us that the Building 51 website (brainchild of Eric Nordstrom, who also owns and operates Urban Remains) has be re-designed in concert with the virtual museum's publishing of its first softbound catalog, which features beautiful photography and in-depth information about the many historically important pieces in its collection. The catalog will be available in the coming weeks (but pre-orders are being taken at the website). Check it all out here.
Image via bldg51.com
I Just finished the new book published by the Walter Burley Griffin Society of America (WBGSoA) titled Rock Crest/Rock Glen Mason City, Iowa: The American Masterwork of Marion M. and Walter B. Griffin with essays by Paul Kruty, Robert E. McCoy, Paul Sprague, and James Weirick. More after the jump...
Both Robert B. and Anthony T. send word that a new monograph has been published by Gibbs Smith on the life work of Organic Architect and Bruce Goff protege, Mickey Muennig. With a forward by architect Herb Greene and an essay by Alan Hess, plus lots of beautiful photography, this book will be a must-have for architecture lovers. More info here.
Image via Amazon
I recently received a copy of the new book, Frank Lloyd Wright's Nakoma Clubhouse & Sculptures, written and designed by Wright aficionado Douglas M. Steiner. The book is an exploration of how the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Nakoma Clubhouse, originally conceived for Madison, WI, came to be posthumously-built as part of a golf resort in Clio, California.
The book details the history of the architectural design, as well as, the geometric statues meant to adorn the initial design. The sculptures took on a separate life of their own, being executed in various forms over the years until their execution as monumental granite statues at the SC Johnson Headquarters in Racine, WI. The book is easy to dive into and its focus on this little-known Wright design makes it a welcome addition to any Wright library. Find out more and order your copy here.
Image via steinerag.com
August 5, 2014 will mark 100 years after the sad and grizzly murders that took place at Taliesin, Frank Lloyd Wright's Spring Green, WI home and studio. Even though a century has passed, interest in the mystery that still swirls around the exact events and motives of the crime captivate people. Follow the link to read more about this persistent interest and watch a video featuring Wright historian Sidney K. Robinson and author Ron McCrea (whose book Building Taliesin explores the tragic event.)
Image via 620wtmj.com
In addition to seeing the newly restored SC Johnson Research Tower, PrairieMod was able to get an amazing personal tour of the nearby (and recently rehabilitated) Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Thomas P. Hardy House (1905). Mark Hertzberg, author of the definitive series of books on Wright's work in Racine, was kind enough to give us a tour of this private residence and the wonderful work that its current owner has undertaken. See more photos of what we saw inside this Prairie School beauty here.
Image copyright PrairieMod
I recently received a copy of a book to review that piqued my interest the moment I opened the shipping box. Drawing Ideas: A Hand-Drawn Approach for Better Design by Mark Baskinger and William Bardel and published by Watson-Guptill is a sumptuous and informative read from cover-to-cover. More after the jump...
I recently picked up a rare brochure called "Color and Protection" which was produced by the American Asphalt Paint Co. for the 1933 "Century of Progress" World's Fair in Chicago. It's a printing tour de force, featuring several metallic and other beautiful bright colors on every page as the Fair and its buildings are graphically represented for the reader. Its importance (beyond being a technical work of printing art) is that it shows us how colorful the Fair was—thanks to designer and color-guru Joseph Urban. Check out scans here of this special brochure from the University of Chicago's special collections.
Image via uchicago.edu
I'm hoping a reader out there might be able to help the PrairieMod library acquire the 4 volume set of The Architectural Drawings of R.M. Schindler by David Gebhard and published originally by Garland Architectural Archives.
The set will greatly augment our ability to study and help others research the work of one of Modernism's most important architects (it would have been most helpful to have when we were saving the Schindler/Wright cottage not long ago).
If you have a set that you'd like to see end up in the PrairieMod library, please contact me at email@example.com.
Image via Google books
Head's Up! Today's presentation by author Kim Bixler on “Growing Up in a Frank Lloyd Wright House," sponsored by Wright On the Park and River City Society for Historic Preservation in Mason City, IA has been rescheduled to take place at 7 pm Friday, Feb. 21, 2014 at the Mason City Architectural Interpretive Center, 520 First St. S.E.
Image via stockmanhouse.org
Metropolis Magazine recently interviewed ArchiTech Gallery owner and author, David Jameson, on the life and the work of Alfonso Iannelli. Read the interview here and then pick up the comprehensive Iannelli book AND go see the new Iannelli exhibit at the ArchiTech Gallery. Details here.
Image via ArchiTech Gallery
Heads up! The Kalo Foundation in Park Ridge, IL will be hosting a display of Arts & Crafts-era silver (specifically Kalo Workshop pieces) to coincide with the book signing of Hand Wrought Arts & Crafts Metalwork and Jewelry: 1890 - 1940 by Darcy L. Evon, author and Kalo Foundation consulting historian.
The event takes place Sunday, February 23, 2014, at 2 pm at the Iannelli Studios Heritage Center, 255 N. Northwest Highway, Park Ridge, Illinois. Books will be available for sale at the event. Read a recent review of the book here and get more info on this and other Kalo Foundation events here.
Image via Kalo Foundation
There's new Registration info for author Kim Bixler's upcoming "What is it like Growing Up in a Frank Lloyd Wright House?" lecture in Mason City, Iowa on February 20, 2014 at 7:00 pm. The event takes place at the Mason City Architectural Interpretive Center, 520 1st Street NE, Mason City, Iowa. Space is limited. Registration required. Go to flw.eventbrite.com to register.
Read about this and other Wright-related events taking place soon in Mason City here.
Image via eventbrite.com
Author and historian Jack Quinan's Weekly Wright Up blog provides an exploration of Italian architect Carlo Scarpa's work (which is the subject of a new book by Robert McCarter) and how Frank Lloyd Wright's ideas may have provided influence. Read it here.
Images via wright-up.blogspot.com/Phaidon Press
Joe Siry's Beth Sholom Synagogue: Frank Lloyd Wright and Modern Religious Architecture, which was published by the University of Chicago Press in 2011, was recently named a finalist for the 2013 National Jewish Book Award in the visual arts category. Read more about it here.
Image via University of Chicago Press
The Portage Daily Register recently published an article on the recently uncovered letters and photos associated with George Elgh and his experiences at Frank Lloyd Wright's Taliesin (all encapsulated in the updated edition of Ron McCrea's Building Taliesin book). Read and see more here.
Image via wiscnews.com
Author Ron McCrea wanted to let PrairieMod readers know that the e-book version of Building Taliesin: Frank Lloyd Wright's Home of Love and Loss is out, with a new section of previously unpublished material that surfaced after the print edition was published. It includes photographs and letters written by a young draftsman during Taliesin's first winter, describing the new estate and life there in vivid detail. More info after the jump...
I've always been intrigued by the blue "Mod" book cover design from a 1970 re-issue of the 1939 An Organic Architecture: The Architecture of Democracy. The letter forms that make up "Frank Lloyd Wright" are written in right-angle lines—but I always felt the design missed the mark by not creating a perfect square out of the forms. So, I decided to remix the idea, clean up some of the parts, and made a perfect square iteration. Of course the next step was to obviously make it cherokee red. Now that feels (W)right!
Left image via steinerag.com/Right image copyright PrairieMod
The Oak Park Public Library will feature a free cinema and discussion series from 2 to 4:30 pm on November 3, 10 and 17, 2013 that will interest Wright-ophiles. The series is titled "Wright Reels: The Taliesin Fellowship and Film" and examines feature-length and short films screened at Taliesin’s Hillside Playhouse from 1942-43 and is inspired The Fellowship apprentice Priscilla J. Henken’s book Taliesin Diary. This series will have Risé Sanders-Weir, professor of film history at Triton College, introducing the films. Read an interview with professor Sanders-Weir to learn some insights into Wright's film tastes during the years being explored.
Image via oppl.org
The Michael H. Berkowitz Gallery in Brooklyn, NY has three 1942 silver gelatin photographic prints by Louise Dahl-Wolfe for sale that feature the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Rose Pauson House in Phoenix, AZ as the setting for a Harper's Bazaar fashion shoot.
What's especially significant about these images is that the house was lost to fire in 1943, so images like these are some of the only ways in which we'll ever know this architectural masterpiece.
Check them out on the 1st Dibs here. If you're interested in learning more about the Pauson House, be sure to check out the book Building the Pauson House: The Letters of Frank Lloyd Wright and Rose Pauson by Allan Wright Green.
Images via 1stdibs
Heads-up! There are two events that Frank Lloyd Wright's Taliesin West is preparing for that PrairieMod readers in the area should not miss. The first is an author presentation and book signing by Kim Bixler on Wednesday, October 16, 2013 and the second is DESIGN + HISTORY: The AIA Taliesin Colloquium, October 18-19, 2013. The Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation is excited about both events, but particularly proud to be partnering with the National AIA's Historic Resources Committee on this landmark event for historic preservation. The two-day symposium promises to offer participants a high level of discussion on historic preservation topics led by true leaders in the field. Find out more info on both exciting events here.
Image via franklloydwright.org
PrairieMod reader, Dave Arland, was kind enough to send along some photos and write about his recent experience touring Frank Lloyd Wright's Hardy House in Racine, WI. More after the jump...
Here's a link to an interview with author and 100-year-old former cook at Frank Lloyd Wright's Fallingwater, Elsie Henderson. Read it here.
Image via History News Network
PrairieMod Squad member, Donna O., was kind enough to review a new book from Pomegranate on the life and art of Walter J. Philips. Read and see more after the jump...
The new book, Alfonso Iannelli: Modern by Design is out in stores and ready to become a treasured holiday gift. But why did it take a decade to come to life? Author and owner of the ArchiTech Gallery, David Jameson, provides the compelling behind the scenes story to how this must-have book came to be. Read it here.
Image via PrairieMod
Chicago Tonight's Art Beat: Inside the Arts Blog recently featured the uber-rare Frank Lloyd Wright-designed 1896 The House Beautiful book that many of us would give our eye teeth for. I've had the privledge of seeing Wright's very own copy of this book in person and it is beyond words. Now if I could just find a copy at a Chicago used book sale some day. Read more here.
Image via chicagotonight.wttw.com
Don't forget to attend the Alfonso Iannelli: Modern by Design book signing this Sunday, September 8, 2013 at the original Iannelli Studios in Park Ridge, IL. Author David Jameson and historian Tim Samuelson will be there to sign books—I'll be there too! Come out to see where the magic happened and meet us all. Details here.
Image via PrairieMod
In 2012, The Clinker Press released their letterpress printed version of Inspiration, an essay by architect Louis H. Sullivan, which had its first reading at the third annual convention of the Western Association of Architects at Chicago, November 17, 1886. Get details and your copy of this beautifully inspiring book here.
Image via The Clinker Press