The Prairie School in Iowa Virtual Class And Home Tours
Here is an exclusive opportunity to learn about the Prairie School in Iowa and visit with the architectural enthusiasts who call these places home through a 3-part Virtual Class featuring 3 virtual home tours: Feb 9, 16 & 23.
Virtual Class led by Paula Mohr, PhD and Ryan Ellsworth, AIA — February 9, 7-8:30 PM:
In the first half of the twentieth century, Iowa was a significant player in the development of what later came to be known as the Prairie School of architecture. This 3-part course will explore some of Iowa’s internationally renowned Prairie School buildings, such as works designed by Frank Lloyd Wright and Walter Burley Griffin. We’ll look at examples located across the state, including the Woodbury County Courthouse and Mason City’s Rock Crest-Rock Glen as well as less famous examples located in small towns throughout the state.
Tour #1 — The Meier House, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, Monona, Iowa — February 16:
Virtual tour of the Meier House, the only Iowa example of the American System-Built House, a Join homeowners Jason Loper and Michael Schreiber as they explain their fascinating stories of finding and restoring this beautiful 1916 home. Motivated by Wright’s lifelong interest in affordable housing, he designed these homes between 1911 – 1917. The tour will be followed by a Q&A with the homeowners, our instructors and attendees.
Tour #2 & #3 — The Schneider House and The Page House, designed by Walter Burley Griffin, Mason City, Iowa — February 23:
Virtual tours of both the Schneider House and the Page House in the Rock Crest-Rock Glen development in Mason City, the first planned Prairie School development in America. Homeowners Tim & Joan Platz and Gary & Anne Schmit will take you through their amazing homes and afterwards you can ask them questions and join in the discussion with other attendees and class instructors. Find out how you can dig deeper into the Prairie School architectural legacy of Mason City.
But hurry! Early Bird Tickets at $35 are only available until 7PM on Feb 1. After that, tickets will be $45. You will receive your access codes to the sessions after you register and a few days prior to the date of the session. This is a fundraiser for Iowa Architectural Foundation to help them through the Covid period.
More information here.
Meet “The God-Almighty-Joneses”
Mark Hertzberg explores the genealogy of “The God-Almighty-Joneses” with the help of two living descendants. They are Georgia Lloyd Jones Snoke of Tulsa, Wright’s first cousin, twice-removed, and her distant cousin Simon Evans, who lives in Wales. Nan, who is referred to on some of these slides, is Mrs. Evans.
Hertzberg's history finds a tantalizing discovery…the Royal Family of Great Britain is related to the Lloyds.
"So, now we have a link between Frank Lloyd Wright’s family and the House of Windsor, the Royal Family of Great Britain (something that the producers of Masterpiece Theater and “The Crown” have overlooked)! So, should the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation, the Frank Lloyd Wright Building Conservancy, and All Other Things Wright send a message to Buckingham Palace, inviting them to join their ranks...or at least send a few pounds and shillings their way? After all, Prince Charles, you know, the Prince of WALES (!) is keenly interested in architecture!"
Mark ends with, "Georgia and Simon have taken us on a remarkable journey. It begins with a couple seeking better fortunes and religious tolerance and ends with their grandson, an architect who spent his summers in the valley of “the God-Almighty Joneses,” whose work is revered to this day. I leave you with photographs I have taken at Unity Chapel, the family chapel across the road from Wright’s beloved Taliesin. " Read the blog and see the photos here.
Celebrating Van Wezel And A Century of Sarasota Arts
Sarasota Magazine features a century of milestones in the making of the cultural community of Sarasota, Florida. Through the decades, Sarasota has embraced the Arts. Of note, the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall in 1970.
The Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall, designed by William Wesley Peters of Taliesin Associated Architects of the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation, opened its doors with a gala performance of Fiddler on the Roof. The landmark lavender seashell-shaped building has presented countless Broadway productions, concerts and performances ever since.
View this timeline and see the milestones here.
Silver Lake's "Reunion House" Recommended As Historic-Cultural Monument
The "Reunion House" on Neutra Place, a modernist, hillside design of overhanging eaves, horizontal lines and floor-to-ceiling windows in the Silver Lake neighborhood of Los Angeles, has been recommended as a city Historic-Cultural Monument.
The Cultural Heritage Commission voted with one abstention Thursday to approve the application, even though COVID-related issues had prevented members of the commission from visiting the site.
The single-family residence at 2440 North Neutra Place, which now has an apartment above the garage, was built in 1951 by Richard Neutra, who is “regarded as one of the most influential architects of the 20th century,” according to architectural historian Barbara Lamprecht, who prepared the application. Though the Reunion House was originally built for Arthur and Kathryn Johnson, it was purchased in 1966 by the architect’s family. Richard Neutra’s son, Dion Neutra, became the owner.
Influenced early on by Frank Lloyd Wright’s philosophy of “breaking the box,” Neutra rose to fame with the design of the Lovell Health House in Los Feliz. He went on to build hundreds of homes across the world, as well as works such as the Adelphi University Swirbul Library in Garden City, New York, and the University of Southern California Child Guidance Clinic in Westwood.
“Richard Neutra’s design was already a superb example of his mastery in manipulating his typical vocabulary of point, line, and plane in the architectural context of shifting solids and voids,” Lamprecht said. Subsequent alterations by Dion Neutra - such as the 450-square-foot addition above the garage - only added to the significance of the property, since they were highly compatible with Richard Neutra’s design intent, according to Lamprecht.
The Reunion House now goes before the City Council, which will officially decide whether to approve it as a Historic-Cultural Monument. More here.
Unity Temple's Valentine’s Day Virtual Concert
On Saturday, February 13, 2021 at 7pm, Unity Temple Restoration Foundation presents a Valentine’s Day concert, featuring three musical duos performing music of romance. Three duos will perform including Duo Diorama with MingHuan Xu, violin and Winston Choi, piano; Ariella Mak-Neiman, piano and Adam Neiman, piano; and Liba Shacht, violin and John Sharp, cello. The event is offered through Zoom and will include an audience Q&A after the concert which is pre-recorded at Frank Lloyd Wright’s Unity Temple.
In case you would like to hold off viewing the concert until February 14, you are in luck! The entire recorded event will be available for registrants to view for 48 hours.
Re-launched in 2019, the Unity Chamber Music Series is hosted in partnership with artistic directors, Winston Choi and MingHuan Xu, and is part of UTRF's cultural and educational programming. Like many other arts organizations, UTRF had cancelled or postponed programs due to the COVID-19 crisis. During these unprecedented times, UTRF's offering of online concerts gives the organization an opportunity to continue serving people not only in the Chicagoland area, but across the world while live concerts aren't possible.
“We are excited to provide these streamed events while Unity Temple is closed, and hope that they will be a source of enrichment and joy for our audience within the safety and comfort of their homes," said Heidi Ruehle, UTRF executive director.
Event registration is $20, with a reduced rate of $10 for students. More information and online registration are available here.. Proceeds from the Unity Chamber Music Series will benefit UTRF’s mission to preserve Unity Temple and provide quality public programming.
“During this incredibly challenging time, it is even more important and vital for us to feed our souls with the vibrancy, intimacy and profound beauty of chamber music. We believe that these virtual performances can bring some much-needed comfort and nourishment,” state UCMS artistic directors Xu and Choi. “We cannot wait to see all of you in person, experiencing live music at the glorious Unity Temple, but we hope that these musical performances can provide some solace and inspiration to you all.” Read details here.
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