Frank Lloyd Wright's Taliesin To Unveil UNESCO World Heritage Plaque
Taliesin Preservation and the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation are unveiling a new plaque at the architect's 800-acre estate in the rural Driftless Hills near Spring Green, WI, celebrating the site's inclusion on the UNESCO World Heritage list. The in-person media event and virtual public streaming watch party will feature special guests, including Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers. UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization) recognizes landmarks or sites for cultural, historical, or scientific relevance.
"This is an incredible moment for Taliesin Preservation, our sister organization The Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation, and our incredible community of friends, partners and donors. As a UNESCO World Heritage Site we are now officially recognized worldwide for bringing outstanding cultural and natural heritage to humanity—and we pledge to continue this as a laboratory for living in the 21st century."- Carrie Rodamaker, Executive Director, Taliesin Preservation
"This designation is a great source of national pride, and while eight buildings are included in the inscription, it recognizes the importance of Wright's work, embodied in every one of his buildings and designs. These sites are not simply World Heritage monuments because they are beautiful. It's so much more than that. These are places of profound influence, inspiration and connection." - Stuart Graff, President & CEO, Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation.
Media Partners are invited to attend the plaque unveiling in-person at Taliesin on September 15, 2021, at 9 a.m. Please RSVP to Aron Meudt-Thering at email@example.com. The public is invited to be a part of this wonderful event at noon CST on Facebook, YouTube, and at taliesinpreservation.org. More information here.
Unity Temple Celebrates UNESCO Designation
After a two-year, $25 million restoration process, Unity Temple in Oak Park, Illinois re-opened to the public in 2017 and was named a UNESCO World Heritage Site in July 0f 2019.
While the honor firmly cemented Unity Temple’s place among highly esteemed architectural sites around the world – UNESCO states that the designated sites contain cultural and natural heritage considered to be of outstanding value to humanity – due to the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the installation of the honorary plaque and in-person celebrations were curtailed.
Unity Temple Restoration Foundation Executive Director Heidi Ruehle says the honor will finally be celebrated on Saturday, Sept. 25 at 10 a.m. when an honorary plaque on the northeast corner of the building is unveiled.
Barbara Gordon, chair of the Frank Lloyd Wright Building Conservancy, will give a speech on the importance of the designation and what that distinction means for the village of Oak Park.
After the unveiling, guests who have not yet had a chance to tour the restored building can walk through Unity Temple, 875 Lake St. The event is free to the general public, and advanced registration is required. Register at utrf.org/event/worldheritage.
Of special note, this fall the Unity Temple Restoration Foundation relaunches its Break::the::Box lecture series, including four lectures with keynote speakers following the theme “Healthy Architecture: The Impact of Design on Human Well-Being.”
The series of lectures will explore concepts and theories by professionals examining the role architecture has in sustaining human well-being in relation to economic development, historic preservation, nature-inspired design and modern live/work culture.
On Sept. 16, Dr. Antony Wood presents “Community, Sustainability and The Skyscraper: Can They Co-Exist?” That will be followed on Nov. 18 by Dr. Richard Condit, who will discuss the “Epidemiology of Chicago School Architecture.”
The series will resume on Feb. 17, 2022, when Amy Coffman-Phillips and Rachel Hahs present “Architectural Well-Being: How the Built Environment Can Enable Healthier Lifestyles.”
Finally, on, April 21, 2022 Erin Aleman will deliver a lecture on “Live/Work Architecture: Designing for a New Way of Living.” More information here.
Midwest's Best Airbnb
If you're going on vacation and want to stay somewhere, you might as well stay at the best. Frank Lloyd Wright’s Schwartz House in Wisconsin was named this year's Midwest's Best Airbnb. This four-bedroom, two full, and two half bath is Frank Lloyd Wright's built version of his LIFE Magazine "Dream House" design from 1938.
To get a look inside Frank Lloyd Wright’s Schwartz House click here.
Wright Through The Lens
Mark Hertzberg posts several intriguing photos of Taliesin and the Wyoming Valley School Cultural Arts Center from a recent visit. Check out the images at his blog, Wright in Racine here.
In The Abstract: Eugene Beyer Masselink
In honor of Eugene Masselink's recent birthday, the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation's Whirling Arrow blog posts an appreciation of Taliesin's wonderful artist and designer. Eugene Beyer Masselink was among the earliest of Frank Lloyd Wright’s apprentices at the Taliesin Fellowship. A learned artist, Masselink had exhibited his work, studied with abstract painter Hans Hoffman, and traveled Europe by car – all before he arrived at the Taliesin Fellowship in 1932. Enrolling as a painter, not an architect, he was initially put to work constructing models, such as those for the S.C. Johnson Administration Building and Broadacre City projects, and often found himself clearing brush or constructing buildings at Taliesin, in Spring Green, Wisconsin.
However, within the first year, Masselink was appointed the personal secretary to Wright. This was a herculean task. He was now handling all the business matters for the Fellowship, as well as Wright’s practice. This meant he was often the first point of contact with potential clients, vendors, contractors, reporters, admirers, et al. Despite these demands, Masselink still found time to create – including landscapes and portraits of his peers at the Fellowship. Read more here.
Hollyhock House Haiku
Friends of Residential Treasures: Los Angeles (FORT: LA) featured Hollyhock House as the subject of their latest Open House project. Readers were challenged to create Hollyhock Haiku to capture the experience of being inside Frank Lloyd Wright’s masterpiece, Hollyhock House. The resulting poems highlight so many facets of the house, its design and its remarkable setting in East Hollywood. Listen to famed British actor Stephen Fry read three chosen haiku here. And you can sign up for free at fortla.org to read all the Hollyhock Haiku. Enjoy!
Licking Co. Foundation Fundraising For Sullivan Building Restoration
The Licking County Foundation continues their efforts to raise funds for completion of the historic Louis Sullivan building restoration in Newark, Ohio. Last week, the organization announced a $1.1 million matching challenge grant from the Wisconsin-based Jeffris Family Foundation, which would support the final stage of the restoration project. Jennie Dawes, Licking County Foundation communications and donor services associate, said their organization seeks to match the donation to raise $3.1 million total.
The Louis Sullivan Building of Newark has graced the Courthouse Square for over a century at One North Third Street. It was built in 1914 and opened its doors on August 25, 1915 as The Home Building Association Company, commonly known as “The Old Home”. One of only eight banks designed by noted American architect Louis Sullivan, it is both a national treasure and a treasured piece of Central Ohio’s heritage. It was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1973. The Licking County Foundation received the building as a donation in 2013 and announced in 2019 a plan to restore the building to as if it were 1915.
The exterior renovation began in 2019 with the cleaning of a lower section of the exterior and aimed at restoring the facade, which included intricate terra cotta, art-glass windows and mosaics, and the installation of new doors, lower-level windows, roof and facade illumination. More here.
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