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Posted: Wed May 16, 2018 7:32 am
by Tom
Nice Website

Posted: Wed May 16, 2018 8:18 am
by SDR
Now I"m looking for a little water-side house, by Breuer I'm almost sure, In Connecticut I think, with a ramp to the door and end panels (for privacy) that are diagonally sheathed.


Posted: Wed May 16, 2018 10:22 am
by Matt
Was the Gregory farmhouse by Wurster the first? Designed in '29 ... am-w-55032

Posted: Wed May 16, 2018 12:48 pm
by Tom
If '29 is correct it beats Wright's Willey house by six years.
Although blaming the ranch house on Wright is kinda superficial.

Posted: Wed May 16, 2018 1:18 pm
by Reidy
The Wurster looks like a straightforward rural California house that could have been built any time from 1800 to 1950, with long, covered breezeways, a trellis and plenty of room to work outdoors. Am I missing something?

Posted: Wed May 16, 2018 2:35 pm
by Matt
I'm looking at it purely from the interest in vertical wood siding. I think Wurster added a V groove which does result in a shadowline, but others in the northwest mounted is flush (Yeon, Belluschi).

Willy is brick. I'm not sure if Wright every used vertical mounted siding and his Usonians never had flush mounted boards, right?

Posted: Wed May 16, 2018 3:50 pm
by SDR
Right -- I believe. Some Usonian ceilings are flat boards, typically with a V-groove of some sort.

Wurster's early farmhouse predicts his later work: plain and orthodox -- vernacular -- detailing, using common material. Wurster:
"Interiors of Douglas fir plywood are more expensive than sheet rock but look cheaper, so we use Douglas fir plywood" (quoted by Joe Esherick).


Posted: Thu May 17, 2018 9:15 am
by Tom
Oh yeah, I mentioned Willey only in reference to ranch house influence not vertical siding.
Sorry for curve ball
Love that quip from Wurster ... read that before but had forgotten ... summarizes the architects dilemma

Posted: Thu May 17, 2018 9:26 am
by SDR
Methinks he doth protest too much; it's like apologizing for the wrong "fault" ? But it acknowledges, in an oblique manner, the architect's preference for "cheap" (i.e., plain) material and detailing choices . . . I guess.

Wurster got high praise from his colleagues. In a slender but large-format publication that appeared in conjunction with an exhibition, three of them describe the work, and the office in San Francisco, from the later '30s on.


Posted: Thu May 17, 2018 12:51 pm
by Roderick Grant
FLW called him "William Worse Than Wurster."

But I think he was just being a bit too smart, like Noel Coward, who of actor Keir Dullea, said "Keir Dullea, gone tomorrow."

Posted: Thu May 17, 2018 2:04 pm
by SDR
One would hope. Wurster, of all people, was neither a threat nor a competitor to Wright, merely a competent and quietly innovative practitioner.

Come to think of it, that in itself might be a sort of challenge . . . !

Frankly, I'm surprised FLLW had heard of him.