HISTORIAN’S CORNER: June 7
Taliesin Preservation’s historian Keiran Murphy’s weekly round-up of noteworthy FLLW resources.
Two Taliesin Fellowship apprentices working on drawings in the Hillside Drafting Studio in Wisconsin. The large, 4-panel model in the foreground is of “Broadacre City,” Wright’s large concept for land and agrarian development (*It was never built). The number of drawings hanging on the wall depict Wright’s many commissions after World War II—and were also projects the Taliesin Fellowship apprentices worked on under his direction. Image owned by The Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation Archives (The Museum of Modern Art | Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library, Columbia University, New York).
Need a bit of design inspiration? Scroll through this digital collection of interesting architecture photographs.
THE TALIESIN FELLOWSHIP/SCHOOL OF ARCHITECTURE:
A Wright apprentice in the 1930s, Peter Berndtson went on to design noteworthy spaces that are still being recognized and written about today: nextpittsburgh.com/current-features/peter-berndston-designed-usonian-house/
PUBLICATIONS WORTH PERUSING
Two Stellar Fictional Reads:
“Loving Frank,” by Nancy Horan.
This book is a historical fiction account of Wright’s relationship to his mistress, Mamah Borthwick—narrated from her point of view. Some critics accused the author of trying to mask an architectural history lesson, but once the setting of the tale is set, the story Horan spins is more fun than educational. (Thus if you go on a Hillside Studio and Theater tour, do not try to align the plot with factual information gleaned from your guide.) Although the most “invented” element is by far the dialogue as Horan did solid research before putting pen to page.
“The Women,” by TC Boyle.
The novel has an unusual premise. A former apprentice in the Taliesin Fellowship tells the story of the main loves of Frank Lloyd Wright’s life, backwards in time. It is surprising, entertaining, and vivid especially in regard to Wright’s second wife (Miriam Noel) becoming a dominant personality. Also, unbelievable as it may seem, all of the press conferences in the book—a fair number spotlighting Miriam Noel’s conflict with her estranged husband, Wright—did occur.