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A Frank Lloyd Wright FISHWAY?????

Posted: Mon Sep 12, 2005 9:56 pm
by Steve G.
I'm a fish biologist who was invited to a FLW house in New Canaan, CT (John Rayward house- Tarianna) to inspect a fishway that allows migratory fish to swim up and around a dam that was built on the Noroton River as part of the house. It pre-dates all other CT fishways and appears to be pretty effective (although there are a few defects that I am working with the current homeowner to correct). It appears to be fashioned after West Coast salmon ladders. Fishway design is pretty tricky and is a specialty yet FLW seems to have done a pretty good job. I'm wondering if this was his own design or whether he contracted with some engineer with fishway design experience for this job. As a fish biologist, I'm new to FLW stuff and am hoping someone might point me in the right direction. Does someone have a book that describes this house and with which they could refer to see if there is any background information on the fishway? Is there a library that contains papers that could be consulted? Are there other FLW houses/buildings that also included fishways? Any advice, insight, information would be welcome.

Posted: Tue Sep 13, 2005 8:33 am
by Paula
You can contact Margo Stipe at the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation in Arizona. She may be able to shed some light on the history of that house as well as any engineering consultants involved. By the way, most FLlW fans would think you are very lucky to have been able to visit that home. It's spectacular!

Posted: Tue Sep 13, 2005 9:46 am
by rgrant
The gardens and waterworks were designed by someone who worked on the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens.

Balls I say!

Posted: Tue Sep 13, 2005 11:04 am
by ASS

Posted: Tue Sep 13, 2005 10:30 pm
by pharding

Posted: Tue Sep 13, 2005 10:41 pm
by Pat Mahoney
A landscape architect currently researching this property does not believe the Brooklyn Botanical Garden information is correct based on interviews with past owners. She also believes the Fish steps date to prior to 1968 and perhaps to the original construction.

Posted: Wed Sep 14, 2005 3:24 pm
by usonian1
Does anyone know if photos of this residence exist somewhere on the web? This is one of my favorite FLW homes and I would love to see some, other than the few published in books.

Posted: Wed Sep 14, 2005 8:26 pm
by Guest
I have to wonder if the design was as good as Mr. wright intended. I hear Rayward was constantly trying to cut costs during construction. So much....that it may have hampered the design.

Posted: Thu Sep 15, 2005 8:36 am
by rgrant
An aerial view that shows the entire structure was published in the 80s in Sotheby's catalogue when it was on the market. But Rayward is one of those questionable late designs. Not only did TAA add significantly to the structure after Mr. Wright's death, but the original layout is a distended version of the Laurent masterpiece and lacks the earlier building's grace. In fact, the list of Laurent knockoffs includes some of the least of Wright: Winn, Spencer, Marden and a number of unbuilt projects. More problems with attribution.

Posted: Thu Sep 15, 2005 11:19 am
by JimM
rgrant wrote: More problems with attribution.

Or perhaps the tendancy to recycle due to an unrealistic workload?

Follow-up to responses

Posted: Sat Sep 17, 2005 8:44 am
by Steve G.
My thanks to to all who have responded [well, at least most, :) ]. I will follow up on some of these ideas. However, I wonder if Pat would be willing to share the contact information for the architect researching this property because that person may have access to the information that may answer my questions.

Posted: Sat Sep 17, 2005 10:21 pm
by Pat Mahoney
I would happy to share that info if you would like to pm me.