Filmmaker Michael Miner's newest documentary in the series Masterpieces – The Most Extraordinary Buildings Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright is now available and features the incomparable Auldbrass Plantation.
The DVD not only highlights the extensively restored Southern estate by Wright, but contains a bonus section featuring a treasure trove of additional footage for the passionate Wright fan, deleted scenes, and more than 30 minutes of extended interview from noted Wright scholar and author David DeLong." Read more.
News.com.au highlights Phantom Architecture a book by Philip Wilkinson that collects the world’s weirdest building designs that were never made. One of their favorites was "The Illinois," a mile-high Chicago Skyscraper designed by Frank Lloyd Wright in the late 1950s. Read more.
Speaking of buildings that never were, Vertical Cities, a new exhibition at the Yale School of Architecture, might help you get your head around them. The show offers 200 models of skyscrapers—real, proposed, imagined—shrunk to 1:1,000 scale. Rotterdam-based designer Harry Hoek of M&H Traveling Exhibitions constructed the facsimilies, from carved wood, stacked paper, molded plastic, or soldered metal. Through February 3, 2018, visitors can tower over some of humanity’s biggest ideas.
Among the fantastical flights of fancy are such gems as Buckminster Fuller’s geodesic spheres—ground-bound or levitating when pumped full of pleasantly warm air. Frank Lloyd Wright's "Mile High", though skinny, bests them all in sheer altitude. Read more.
Dr. Vincent Scully, a Yale University professor for six decades passed away November 30, 2017 at his home in Lynchburg, Virginia. He was 97. The renowned architect Philip Johnson called him “the most influential architecture teacher ever.” For Dr. Scully, architecture wasn’t just about buildings. Known as the foremost architectural historian of his time, he exerted a profound influence on how the wider public understands the purpose of architecture. In more than a dozen books and thousands of lectures that were an awe-inspiring form of performance art, Dr. Scully sought to impart several central ideas: that buildings help define a culture, that architecture should be a humanizing force and that a well-built community can foster a well-lived life.
When Dr. Scully reached Yale’s mandatory retirement age of 70 in 1991, his final lecture was featured on the front page of the New York Times. Architects and Yale alumni attended from around the world. More here and here.
Author and architecture critic, Christopher Hawthorne, reconsiders the legacy of the Frank Lloyd Wright on the 150th anniversary of the architect's birth in Coming Around to Frank Lloyd Wright.
"The elements of Wright’s work that once struck me as simply nostalgic now look much more complex and layered: more like a synthesis of forward- and backward-looking impulses, as interested in the future of modular systems, say, as in the importance of memory or the power of archaic form. His best work was American in a deeply historical sense—throughout his career he rejected imported models—but it was also American in an inventive, optimistic, and pragmatic sense, in its ad hoc and can-do spirit...
...do your best to understand the buildings on their own terms, as I’ve been trying to do with the L.A. houses, for their structural logic and materiality as much as their formal vocabulary or picturesque qualities—what emerges is a figure rushing into the future more energetically than we remember. Wright wanted to experiment not just with his buildings but the limits of the field itself. He wanted to put an energetic new American architecture on a wide test track, open up the engine, and let the thing run."
The architectural influences of Frank Lloyd Wright are still very evident. When Howard Brounstein, a Californian who had studied design, was finally able to purchase land next to Cowichan Bay he wanted to build a very low and unobtrusive home reminiscent of Frank Lloyd Wright's flat-roofed architecture. Read more.
In the The Whirling Arrow, Rob Rainone, a School of Architecture at Taliesin Immersion student, discusses how being inspired by Taliesin West led to greater understanding of Frank Lloyd Wright’s work while recreating desert masonry on a smaller scale.
Immersion students are included on the “joylist”—a weekly list of chore assignments for residents of Taliesin West—including a week of decorating the dining room. Needing to follow the tenets of Wright’s organic architecture, the design should be of its place, its time, and its user.
Rob decided to replicate Wright’s concept of desert masonry on a small scale to support tea lights or tapers in the dining room of Taliesin West. These handmade desert masonry candleholders are available for purchase at the Frank Lloyd Wright Store at Taliesin West. Call 602.800.5444 to place your order or visit the Store at Taliesin West. (Candleholders are not available for purchase online.) Read more.
Finding the commonalities between man and the organic elements of his environment has been at the heart of Art icon James Hubbell’s work for more than 60 years. Hubbell, now 86 years old, cites among his influences the principles of Frank Lloyd Wright, the expressionistic style of Modernist Spanish architect Antonio Gaudí (creator of the fantastical Sagrada Familia cathedral in Barcelona), the abstract forms of African sculpture, and the meditative qualities of Buddhism.
Educated in the mid-1950s at the Whitney Art School in New Haven, Connecticut, and later the Cranbrook Art Academy in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, Hubbell started out in sculpting and expanded into many other forms, including home design. Together with his son, Drew, a San Diego architect who has been Hubbell’s business partner since the mid-1990s, the father and son team built many of the buildings at their Santa Ysabel compound as well as custom homes, museums, schools, chapels, sculpture gardens and seven public parks throughout the Pacific Rim.
Hubbell’s signature design elements are soaring curved roofs, domes and arches, hand-textured clay, curled metals, colorful stained-glass windows and hand-cut tile mosaics, all inspired by the natural shapes of shells, leaves, rocks, vines, tree, ocean waves and waterfalls. As in nature, there are few straight lines.
Over the past four years, symptoms of Parkinson’s disease have reduced Hubbell’s ability to draw and paint as he once did. But always looking at the bright side of things, Hubbell said he’s found a path around his health problems. “I figure that you work with what you’ve got. If you don’t have much, you still have something,” he said. “I’m very grateful for what I have and we have a lot of work right now. You could say I’m addicted to work.” Read more.
A stunning home by Taliesin Apprentice Daniel Liebermann in Berkeley Hills, California is asking $3.8 million and is still looking for its next steward. As Curbed SF points out, the home oozes originality and beauty, but it could do with a little TLC. Read more.