The Phoenix Business Journal reports that as the owner of the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed David and Gladys Wright House prepares for restoration and property expansion plans, Phoenix City Councilman Sal DiCiccio is just as prepared to oppose the plans in the Phoenix City Council and block a permit request for events. Read more about the ongoing battle here.
Image via bizjournals.com
Archinect.com reports that the effort to raise $2 million by the end of 2015 to help prop-up the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture as an independent organization. The Foundation set a $1 million goal to be reached by the end of August 2015, and is now half way there – but must raise the remaining funds by August 25 in order to continue fundraising as planned. Read more about the current situation here.
Image via Wikipedia
Since yesterday's posting of the list of surviving original Frank Lloyd Wright clients, PrairieMod readers did what they do best: they do the necessary research to see if all the info is correct. Well, it turns out that John Clouse, Paul Ringstrom, and Janet Halstead of the Frank Lloyd Wright Building Conservancy did more digging and we now have a revised list of surviving clients. See the full list after the jump...
Mark Hertzberg recently spoke to Sean Malone about his time, experiences, and announced departure as CEO of the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation. The retrospective, posted on Mark's weblog, Wright in Racine, is in three parts: A photo history of Sean during his tenure; An April 2012 profile of him, written as he began his stewardship of the Foundation; and highlights of their recent conversation on July 13, 2015. Read and see it all here.
Photo copyright Mark Hertzberg
The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports that Wisconsin Governor and Republican Presidential hopeful, Scott Walker, vetoed 104 items from the state budget, including "...a plan that would have created a Frank Lloyd Wright Heritage Trail that showed drivers on Wisconsin highways how to get to landmarks the famed architect designed. Along with it, he removed a $500,000 grant that would have been used to promote the trail."
It's a shame a plan to bring more tourism (and tourism dollars) to the state could not survive the machinations of petty politics. Read more here.
Image credit: Michael Sears
We recently received notice from several Old Town neighborhood residents and the Chicago Art Deco Society (CADS) that a building on the historic block of Burton Place is slated for demolition on July 15, 2015. The building is at 159 W. Burton Place and was recently sold to a developer. A demolition permit has been applied for to build a large and intrusive new structure. Since the current home is immediately adjacent to the Carl Street Studios designed by Edgar Miller, Sol Kogen, and Jesus Torres, its demolition would cause irreparable damage to the historically important surrounding structures. Learn more after the jump...
The Phoenix Business Journal reports that four former Phoenix mayors—Paul Johnson, Phil Gordon, Skip Rimsza and Terry Goddard—have all voiced their support for tours and programs at the David & Gladys Wright House. Now if they could just convince the neighbors...Read more about it here.
Image via davidwrighthouse.org
The Arizona Republic reports that Sean Malone, the CEO of the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation, has announced he will step down after his two-year contract is up in 2016. Based in Wisconsin, Malone feels the Foundation's CEO needs to be based in Scottsdale, AZ at Taliesin West and he cannot make the move. His tenure was marked with a tripling of annual fundraising dollars, but much more needs to be raised to stabilize both Taliesin sites. The Foundation begins the search for a replacement, which they hope to have by November. Read more here.
Photo credit: Sean Malone and Minerva Montooth at Wright's birthday dinner, Saturday June 6, 2015 at Taliesin, Spring Green. © Mark Hertzberg
The Wright in Wisconsin website and an article in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports the news that an unassuming bungalow in Shorewood, WI, was identified by Mike Lilek as a previously unidentified Frank Lloyd Wright American System-Built Homes design from 1917.
As stated on the WiW website: "The Shorewood house is a “Model A203” with two bedrooms. An open porch at the rear of the house was enclosed for added living space at an unknown date, though the original art glass windows are still in place. A basement-level garage was added in 1976."
What's refreshing is that this discovery has a link to Mike's research available for all to review—lending facts to back up the claim.
Images via Wright in Wisconsin website
The Phoenix Business Journal reports on the newest wrinkle in the ongoing saga to open the David and Gladys Wright House to the public for tours and events: Deed restrictions. Opponents to the plans to open the house to the public cite local deed restrictions that limited the activities of neighborhood homes to act only as residences. The owner of the Wright house counter that their plans do not violate the actual wording of the deed restrictions. Read more about this architectural tug of war here.
Image credit: Outinaz/via Wikimedia Commons
Swaback Partners are back in the news with the announcement of a new project with nonprofit Sun Health, the largest provider of destination retirement communities in Arizona. Swaback Partners, headed by Frank Lloyd Wright apprentice Vern Swaback, are working on an updated master plan for 300 acres on one of Sun Health's Life Care campuses—the La Loma Village in Litchfield Park, AZ. As reported in this press release, "concepts include the culture of a village and multiple-use structures as well as elements of agri-tourism, a farm-to-fork model and expansion of existing independent living and assisted living spaces." Read more here.
Image via Swaback Partners
The Phoenix Business Journal reports that the owner of the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed David and Gladys Wright House in Arcadia, AZ has sent out mailers to about 15,000 neighborhood households in an effort to turn opinion towards the organization's plans to host events, tours, and concerts at the property. Read more here.
Image credit: Outinaz/Wikipedia
Google celebrates Earth Day with one of their "Google Doodles" which when clicked, takes you to a quiz that tells you what animal you are (I'm a Komodo Dragon, apparently).
Take a walk outside, turn off that extra light, bicycle to work...do something to remind yourself that this blue marble we live on is all we got and we need to take care of it. Then treat every day going forward like Earth Day!
Image via Google
Mark H. sends a link to a disturbing story in the Chicago Tribune about Republican Illinois Governor, Bruce Rauner's plan to eliminate the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency. That move could significantly impact state historic sites (including the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Dana House in Springfield, IL) and would hobble a program that bring in million of dollars of tourism money and has contributed to more than $1 billion in construction spending. Read more about it here.
Image credit: Antonio Perez, Chicago Tribune
The Buffalo News reports that the founders of the Buffalo Transportation/Pierce-Arrow Museum (and home of the newly-constructed Wright-designed filling station) in downtown Buffalo, NY have acquired adjacent property and have plans to expand the museum to 300,000 square feet, making it largest auto-related museum in the world. Read more about it here.
Photo credit: Derek Gee/Buffalo News
Tonight will be an important moment in the effort to save the Keck and Keck-designed William Blair House in Lake Bluff, IL. Lisa DiChiera of Landmarks Illinois sends info about the meeting and what you can do to make your opinion heard in the effort to save this work of Chicago Modernism. More after the jump...
CSPnet.com reports that the McKinney-Lindholm family, which owns the Cloquet, MN-based Best Oil company, will be selling its 20 Little Store gas stations and convenience stores to TravelCenters of America. However, the family will retain the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed gas station and ownership of 15 acres of land where the Wright-designed home know as "Mantyla" stands. Read more here.
Image via Wikipedia
Michael Bridgeman informs us that Tuesday night the Madison, Wisconsin city council approved a zoning change will allow the hotel proposed for the Robie Lamp House block to exceed established height limits. The result is that more shadow will be cast on the Lamp House and its context will be further degraded. The vote was 13 to 7 in favor of the zoning change.
In the meantime, a working group has started research toward creating a small historic district that would include the Lamp House, a recommendation in the special report of the Lamp House block committee adopted by the council last year. We'll continue to keep readers informed of this long-running preservation challenge.
Image via Gary Brink & Associates
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
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...
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
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
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
The State Journal-Register reports that newly inaugurated Illinois State Governor, Bruce Rauner, used a Bible that had once belonged to Springfield, IL heiress and important Frank Lloyd Wright client, Susan Lawrence Dana, in his swearing in. Read more about it here.
Image credit Justin L. Fowler/The State Journal-Register
Mark Hertzberg sends word that he has posted photos to Wright in Racine of the celebration of Frank Lloyd Wright apprentice Charles Montooth at Unity Chapel and Taliesin, which took place on Saturday, January 3, 2015. See and read more here.
Image © Mark Hertzberg/photographs with permission of the Montooth family
The New York Times reports that the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture in will attempt to raise $2 million before the end of 2015 to secure its long-term future as an independent organization, apart from the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation. This comes after the public kerfuffle over the school's loss of accreditation in 2017 and path towards dissolution. Read more about it here.
Image via usatoday.com
Crains Chicago Business reports that after developer Garrett Kelleher failed to make a $22 million dollar payment on the property where the Santiago Calatrava Chicago Spire was to be built, it was taken over by Related Midwest LLC. This effectively kills any dream of building the spiraling tower.
The building site's new owner does pledge to create "an architecturally significant and thoughtful development befitting this premier location," so perhaps there's hope for something architecturally worthwhile yet. Read more here and here.
Image via Crains Chicago Business
There was lots of excitement and picture taking in Wilmette yesterday--it's not everyday that people see a Prairie School building cut into three pieces and moved to a nearby town! But that's what happened to the John S. Van Bergen James Irving Residence, which was saved from demolition by moving it to nearby Evanston. Read the various news coverage of the event here, here, and here, and see more photos at Mark Hertzberg's Wright in Racine blog.
Image copyright Mark Herzberg
After 16 years, the ArchiTech Gallery (the bricks and mortar version in Chicago's art gallery district) will close at the end of December, 2014. Till then, the Burnham, Sullivan and Wright exhibition is still on the walls till November 29, 2014. This is a sad day for those of us that love being able to see architectural art up close and in the wonderfully salon-like setting that is(was) the ArchiTech Gallery. If you have not made a trip to go visit the Chicago gallery, then get there before it closes this winter!
Image via ArchiTech Gallery
Landmarks Illinois and the city of Evanston send word that on Friday, October 10, work will begin to relocate the historic John S. Van Bergen-designed James Irving House to Evanston, IL from its current location at 1318 Isabella Rd. in Wilmette, IL. The house will be temporarily stored in the parking lot of the future Whole Foods location at Isabella St. and Green Bay Rd. until the new site in Evanston is ready. Read more after the jump...
KJZZ.org reports that after the steady and building backlash from the public, students, and alumni over the handling of the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture's loss of accredidation (and long-term viability) by the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation, the Board of Directors has had a "change of heart." As stated in the KJZZ article:
"All 17 members of the foundation's board of trustees voted in favor of working toward independently incorporating the school, which is currently a division of the foundation. This move would mean the school could continue offering a master's degree program beyond 2017, because as an independent entity it would be in compliance with new accreditation rules set in 2012 by the Higher Learning Commission, the agency that accredits the Wright school and other colleges and universities."
This is heartening news and shows that the sides are finally listening to each other. Hopefully this will be the start of rebuilding trust and ensure that the education of future Organic Architects will continue. Read and listen to more here.
Images via FLWSoA
The news of the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture's accreditation loss and the internal organizational struggle for its future has been all over the news. The School's survival and its ability to gain accreditation hinges on the need for it to be incorporated as an independent subsidiary from the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation (something the FLW Foundation Board of Trustees has not been willing to do at this point). Now, a new on-line petition has been started to help build public support for the School's independence and its future. It will be interesting to see how this story plays out if public overwhelmingly supports the School as a separate entity.
If you want to show your support the School, then sign the petition here.
Image via Change.org
Architect, the magazine of the American Institute of Architects, recently featured a Q&A interview with Frank Lloyd Wright School Board of Governors member, Jerry van Eyck on the subject of the ongoing battle to keep the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture from dissolving after losing accreditation. The magazine previously featured a similar Q&A with Sean Malone, the President and CEO of the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation, so it's interesting to get the other side as well.
What's often overlooked in all of this war of the words is how the students themselves feel. Luckily, student Pablo Moncayo has stepped up and put together a couple of YouTube videos speaking up on how he (and presumably other students) feel about the potential loss of their institution. Watch the videos here and here.
We'll keep watching how this story develops and will continue to report on its twists and turns. Feel free to let us know how you feel in the comments section!
Image credit: Barrett Doherty
When the news that the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture would lose its accreditation in 2017, the reaction from most was one of surprise and sadness. The Frank Lloyd Foundation opted not to incorporate the school separately for fear of losing control and voted to forgo accreditation.
While Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation president and CEO, Sean Malone, stated in an interview that the Foundation was going to be looking for another accredited institution with whom to partner so they can jointly offer a professional degree, the School's own board of governors saw the situation differently.
On Wednesday, the architecture school’s board of governors released a statement saying it “respectfully disagrees with the decisions and actions” by the Foundation’s board to ostensibly shut the school down.
Image credit David Wallace/The Republic
Lon Arbegust sends word that the AD German Warehouse Conservancy, Inc. has received verification from the Internal Revenue Service that ADGWC, Inc. is now exempt from Federal Income tax under section 501 (c) (3) of the Internal Revenue Code. ADGWC is qualified to receive tax deductible bequests, devises, transfers or gifts under section 2056, 2106 or 2522 of the Code. They welcome all who wish to contribute to this unique Frank Lloyd Wright restoration effort. Follow the effort at the ADGWC Facebook page here.
Image via ADGWC, Inc.
We heard from both Helena K. and Justin D. that yesterday afternoon's storms in Chicago brought major flooding to the Louis Sullivan and Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Charnley-Persky House on 1365 North Astor Street. Water poured into the National Landmark building, which serves as the headquarters of the Society of Architectural Historians, through a second-floor bathroom. The water rushed up and out of the toilet and sink, flooding the bathroom and running down to the library on the first floor. The basement of the house was flooded with over two inches of water. SAH is cleaning up and waiting for experts to come in and help repair the water damage. See more photos and help support SAH here.
Image via sah.org
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
Friday, August 15, 2014 will mark the 100th anniversary of the terrible murders that took place at Frank Lloyd Wright's Spring Green, WI home and studio, Taliesin. William B. Scott of the Scott Architectural Archives and OAD Archives recently found a digital copy of the story as printed in The Ogden Standard from Ogden, Utah. It not only shows how wide-spread the story was a century ago, it also shows how sensationalized it was. Click on the link below to see a larger version of the article.
Artist Larry Zgoda has recently donated a hand painted plate by renowned Chicago artist, Edgar Miller, and an antique Osterizer, food blender, designed by Alfonso Iannelli to the Iannelli Studios Heritage Center in Park Ridge, Illinois. Judy Barclay accepted the items on August 1, 2014, and expects to display them with the developing museum’s collection of Iannelli and related art and artifacts. Read more after the jump...