Video: Unity Temple's "Latecomers" entrance

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DavidC
Posts: 7898
Joined: Sat Sep 02, 2006 2:22 pm
Location: Oak Ridge, TN

Video: Unity Temple's "Latecomers" entrance

Post by DavidC »

"Latecomers" entrance - (2:55)


David

Roderick Grant
Posts: 10294
Joined: Wed Mar 29, 2006 7:48 am

Re: Video: Unity Temple's "Latecomers" entrance

Post by Roderick Grant »

Excellent! I have never known of this "latecomer" passage. I'll have to peruse Siry's book.

SDR
Posts: 19606
Joined: Sat Jun 17, 2006 11:33 pm
Location: San Francisco

Re: Video: Unity Temple's "Latecomers" entrance

Post by SDR »

All published plans of this building show a different arrangement of the lowest level than that revealed in this little video. The passage we travel through is drawn as an open room with a curious arrangement of partitioned cells; it is labeled "coat room" on all plans. It appears that a partition was erected at about where the numeral 4 appears, on this plan drawing https://www.planetclaire.tv/fllw/fllwim ... pfirst.jpg

In addition, the privacy screen at the bottom of the stair has been removed, to create a straight passage across the basement to the stair at the opposite end. One wonders when this was done, whether additional bathroom facilities have been installed (added to the two toilets that Wright drew), and what is behind the door that appears on the hallway partition as the camera moves past it.

S

Rood
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Joined: Sat Oct 30, 2010 12:19 pm
Location: Goodyear, AZ 85338

Re: Video: Unity Temple's "Latecomers" entrance

Post by Rood »

Interesting tour, but, rather remarkably, it's almost exactly the route I took to enter the sanctuary, the cold, snowy Sunday after Christmas, when I arrived late. The fascinating thing is that our video guide "sat" almost exactly where I sat that Sunday morning. I was the only person on the balcony that time, too! The magical sound of a soloist singing in that beautiful room has never left me.

President Kennedy had just drafted me ... in the cold war following the construction of the Berlin Wall ... and I was determined to see as many FLLWright buildings as possible, before being shipped off to Colorado Springs, and an uncertain future. Late December might not be the best time to go on tour, but, gosh, when i arrived in Racine ... I had the JWax tour guide all to myself.

SDR
Posts: 19606
Joined: Sat Jun 17, 2006 11:33 pm
Location: San Francisco

Re: Video: Unity Temple's "Latecomers" entrance

Post by SDR »

The congregation that commissioned the Temple was said to number 400 souls. Does the auditorium (Wright's term) seat 400 ? At first glance it seems hard to believe. But I count 58 pews; if each pew sat seven persons, that would more than cover the need.

S

Reidy
Posts: 1597
Joined: Fri Jan 07, 2005 3:30 pm
Location: Fremont CA

Re: Video: Unity Temple's "Latecomers" entrance

Post by Reidy »

The standard story is that getting latecomers unobtrusively to the back of the room is one function of the cloisters, though the video shows that they'd still have to walk in front of at least one row of pews. Did Wright intend those pews? Fig. 75 on p 101 of Siry's book suggests that he did, but the drawing is unclear as to whether it shows the cloisters or the balcony above them.

SDR
Posts: 19606
Joined: Sat Jun 17, 2006 11:33 pm
Location: San Francisco

Re: Video: Unity Temple's "Latecomers" entrance

Post by SDR »

I wonder when the "Latecomers" sign was installed . . .

S

Reidy
Posts: 1597
Joined: Fri Jan 07, 2005 3:30 pm
Location: Fremont CA

Re: Video: Unity Temple's "Latecomers" entrance

Post by Reidy »

Some time after I first saw the building in the 80s. I have a hard time believing that, if a bride and her party want to make an entry, Wright intended them to go through that dreary hall.

SDR
Posts: 19606
Joined: Sat Jun 17, 2006 11:33 pm
Location: San Francisco

Re: Video: Unity Temple's "Latecomers" entrance

Post by SDR »

Almost every Wright structure has attached to it, by now, some apocryphal addenda, the sort of thing a docent can trot out when the troops become restless. Perhaps these "legends" and anecdotes could be posted for reading outside the building, next to the dedicatory and congratulatory plaques, to be consumed at will by those who enjoy them.

I imagine docents in Japan, say, silently leading visitors into and through a temple or ancient residence, pointed without words to salient features, and allowing those gathered to take in the beauty free from unnecessary chatter . . .

S

Roderick Grant
Posts: 10294
Joined: Wed Mar 29, 2006 7:48 am

Re: Video: Unity Temple's "Latecomers" entrance

Post by Roderick Grant »

Barnsdall, Ennis and Freeman would require veritable tomes to list all of the addenda patched onto them.

DavidC
Posts: 7898
Joined: Sat Sep 02, 2006 2:22 pm
Location: Oak Ridge, TN

Re: Video: Unity Temple's "Latecomers" entrance

Post by DavidC »

Unity Temple - (3:08)


David

SDR
Posts: 19606
Joined: Sat Jun 17, 2006 11:33 pm
Location: San Francisco

Re: Video: Unity Temple's "Latecomers" entrance

Post by SDR »

In the closing shot of the video we see, at far upper right, a dark vertical line---a division---in the continuous light screen (never was Wright's term more apt). These off-center divisions (there is a major one and a minor one) suggest some function. Is there one of these in each of the four light screens ? Is that an operable panel, perhaps, giving emergency or maintenance access to the space between the screen and the exterior glass ?

The mottling of the painted surfaces in this restored space serves as an admirable example to be sought in other Wright refinishing projects: restraint. Would Wrightians---and Mr Wright himself---be offended if I suggest that, in this matter, "less is more" ?

S

DavidC
Posts: 7898
Joined: Sat Sep 02, 2006 2:22 pm
Location: Oak Ridge, TN

Re: Video: Unity Temple's "Latecomers" entrance

Post by DavidC »

Oak Park Art League - (3:47)


David

Roderick Grant
Posts: 10294
Joined: Wed Mar 29, 2006 7:48 am

Re: Video: Unity Temple's "Latecomers" entrance

Post by Roderick Grant »

According to Robert Winter, the post office across the street from Unity Temple was designed by Paul Philippe Cret, a French architect and professor at the University of Pennsylvania. It is a wonderful building in a Deco style.

DavidC
Posts: 7898
Joined: Sat Sep 02, 2006 2:22 pm
Location: Oak Ridge, TN

Re: Video: Unity Temple's "Latecomers" entrance

Post by DavidC »


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