Posted by the editors on Sunday, 3 March 2013
Architecture: ‘The Artistic and the Beautiful’: Frank Lloyd Wright’s Wide-Ranging Views (audio interview): “..In 1957, two years before his death, Frank Lloyd Wright sat down with WNYC (ndlr: radio) to discuss his design philosophy, exhibiting his trademark eloquence and blistering opinions. The year of this interview marks an explosion of commissions for Wright, who by then had been practicing architecture for 70 years..
Wright mainly designed homes until 1957-58, when he took on 90 new projects, many for public buildings. Over all, Wright’s last decade was his most prolific, accounting for nearly one-third of his oeuvre. This interview was recorded in his Plaza Hotel apartment where he’d moved two years earlier in order to oversee construction of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, on which he had been working for 14 years. Here, Wright neatly dismisses the project’s many critics, promising “…a new point of view…it’s going to be so enlivening and refreshing that it will make some of these painters quite ashamed of the protest that they issued against it.”
In this interview, Wright also expresses distaste for the nascent designs of Sydney Opera House, as well as the U.S. Air Force Academy structure, whose designers he lambasts as “Poetry Crushers with a capital P.” The Academy’s use of an advisory committee of architects prompts Wright to remark that “an architect is either an inspiration or…he’s merely a committee-mind…a liability.”
Asked whether he’s acquainted with New York’s planned Lincoln Center complex, Wright remarks, “I think it wouldn’t do me any good to become acquainted with it. I suggest the other way around: they become…acquainted with the ones that I’m doing.”
Two notable influences on the young Wright were his itinerant childhood (his father was a traveling minister), and years spent on his uncle’s Wisconsin farm where he “learned…the region in every line and feature…the modeling of the hills, the weaving and fabric that clings to them, the look of it all in tender green or covered with snow or in full glow of summer.” His mother, a school teacher, enhanced his understanding of structure by giving him a set of newly invented blocks developed by revolutionary German educator Friedrich Fröbel whose theories laid the foundations for modern education.
Beyond architecture, Wright is also noted as a singularly influential and innovative urban planner, interior designer, architectural writer, and educator. He is noted for his often prescient, sometimes embattled philosophical and social views, a range well displayed in this broadcast, when in the middle of describing his new designs for homes with children’s playrooms, he can’t help but point out that “the American family should be three, not four…and above that, heavily taxed, more and more as they increase in number.” (Wright fathered seven children.)..
Recognized by the American Institute of Architects as “the greatest American architect of all time,” Frank Lloyd Wright was born in Richland Center, Wis., and went on to design 1,141 structures — including houses, offices, churches, clinics, schools, libraries, bridges, and museums — 532 of which were built. Today, 409 are still standing, nearly one-third of them listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Wright died in 1959, six months before the Guggenheim opened.
Asked what architects could do to help build “a better society and civilization,” Wright slips into an uncharacteristically heartfelt tone, suggesting they “study nature, seriously, intelligently, and with feeling, and appreciation.” He also warns that if New York City doesn’t acquire more green space immediately, it will be “uninhabitable.”
At least four of Wright’s descendants became architects, one of whom, his son John Lloyd Wright, invented Lincoln Logs. Other descendants include an architecture professor, two interior designers, a master woodworker, and the actress Anne Baxter, who is Wright’s granddaughter..” Fascinating…
image: © 2009 The Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation, Scottsdale, Arizona, USA; article: Charis Conn, WNYC, NEH
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Posted in Architects, Architecture, Architecture + Design, Art, Articles, Contemporary Architecture, contemporary design, Cultural Architecture, Design, Design & Decoration, Designalog, Educational Architecture, Exhibitions, Galleries, green, Green Design, Humanitarian Design, Infrastructure Architecture, Institutional Architecture, Interiors, Interviews, Mid-Century Design, Modernism, Museums, Public Architecture, Public Facilities, Public Parks, Residential Architecture, Urban Design | Tagged: 'The Artistic and the Beautiful', 'The Artistic and the Beautiful': Frank Lloyd Wright's Wide-Ranging Views (audio interview), AIA, American Institute of Architects, Anne Baxter, Architects, Architecture, Arizona, Australia, Charis Conn, Design, Designalog, Falling Water, Frank Lloyd Wright, Friedrich Frobel, Guggenheim Museum, Homes, Houses, Housing, Interviews, Lincoln Center, Lincoln Logs, Museum Architecture, Museums, NEH, New York City, North America, Public Parks, Residential Architecture, Scottsdale, Sydney Opera House, The Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation, Urbanism, US, US Air Force Academy, WNYC | Leave a Comment »
Posted by the editors on Wednesday, 28 November 2012
Residential Architecture: Broom Way Residence by Nonzero Architecture: “..Having lived in the historic Brentwood, California, neighborhood for a decade and well aware of its unique quality, the owners had planned to expand their 1950’s house. Demolishing the unremarkable structure and building from ground up ultimately turned out to be the better solution. The resulting 4,200 square foot residence was completed in September 2011..Inspired by strict regulations demanding a mid-century ideal of humane modernism and appreciative of its values, the design is a contemporary interpretation and celebration of its inherent qualities, with an added strong focus on sustainability ..A steep down-slope site above a wooded canyon required a low profile from the street and the careful positioning of the volumes to preserve views, while making the comparably large home appear modestly scaled in keeping with the neighborhood..The massing concept consists of a simple large open glass volume for the shared living spaces, wrapped around three-dimensionaly by a solid band of smaller rooms that also maintain the owner’s privacy from the street. Closely integrated into the historic surroundings, the house features a typical transparent clerestory above the opaque walls and a floating flat roof with exposed steel beams..The desired inside-outside relationships, openness and attention to craft and detailing were achieved with a glazed steel post-and-beam structure. The concrete retaining walls are left exposed where possible and contrast with the steel and the sustainably harvested tropical hardwood siding..Photovoltaic glass panels power the house and offer a serene dappled light on the terrace while, along with deep roof overhangs, they help shade it. Natural ventilation is facilitated and encouraged through the placement of operable windows and folding glass walls, opening to the large deck, along the path of the prevailing breezes..Throughout the house, views of the canyon, the trees and the distant ocean and shoreline are carefully framed for maximum enjoyment as well as privacy. Spaces are extended outward and the surrounding landscape is continually incorporated into the design. The entry sequence leads through the solid perimeter band of rooms, through a glazed door sheltered by a skylight, into the large space, which finally opens up dramatically after one passes behind the freestanding kitchen volume..Built-in mahogany cabinets and shelves, including a fully rotating shelf wall separating a study and offering a choice between bookshelves and a TV, help to keep the tall space open and uncluttered..Roof beams from the old house were repurposed as steps and benches throughout and complement the largely drought-resistant landscaping..” Extensive glazing, natural light, views; modest street-side elevation; clerestory windows; interesting form, interior volumes, details; solar energy, sustainability..
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image: © Juergen Nogai; article: ”Broom Way Residence / Nonzero Architecture” 23 Nov 2012. ArchDaily. <http://www.archdaily.com/297019>
Posted in Architects, Architecture, Architecture + Design, Contemporary Architecture, contemporary design, Design, Designalog, Interiors, Mid-Century Design, Modernism, Residential Architecture, Solar Design, Sustainable Architecture, Sustainable Design | Tagged: archdaily, Architecture, Brentwood, Broom Way Residence, Broom Way Residence by Nonzero Architecture, Built-in Furniture, California, Clerestory Windows, Concrete, Decks, Design, Designalog, Folding Glass Walls, glass, Hardwood, Homes, Horizontal Wood Cladding, Houses, Indoor/Outdoor, Mahogany, mid-century modern, Nonzero Architecture, North America, Photovoltaics, Repurposing, Residential Architecture, Roof Beams, Roof Overhangs, Skylights, Solar Energy, steel, Steep Sites, sustainability, Terraces, US, wood | Leave a Comment »
Posted by the editors on Friday, 23 November 2012
Residential Architecture: Santa Monica Residence by Jendretzki: “..This new pavilion added to an existing mid-century house in the Rustic Canyon area of Santa Monica, California, USA, bordering the Pacific Palisades involved negotiating the high functioning requirements of a Los Angeles based family and their love for scandinavian design and detailing..By utilizing a muted material palette of light toned wood and glass we were able to harmoniously engage the southern California sun and create a tranquil work studio and inviting home..” Extensive glazing, natural light, garden views; interesting materiality and details..
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image: © Alejandro Wirth; article: Gaete , Javier . “Santa Monica Residence / Jendretzki” 07 Nov 2012. ArchDaily. <http://www.archdaily.com/290019>
Posted in Architects, Architecture, Architecture + Design, Contemporary Architecture, contemporary design, Design, Design & Decoration, Designalog, Interiors, Mid-Century Design, Residential Architecture | Tagged: Additions, archdaily, Architecture, Brick, California, Design, Designalog, Extensions, Fenestration, glass, Homes, Houses, Jendretzki, Mid-Century Design, mid-century modern, North America, Pavilions, Residential Architecture, Santa Monica, Santa Monica Residence, Santa Monica Residence by Jendretzki, Scandinavian design, Skylights, steel, US, wood, Wood Cladding | Leave a Comment »