Question on house visits re upcoming trip to New England

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DavidC
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Question on house visits re upcoming trip to New England

Post by DavidC »

My wife and I will be traveling to Concord, New Hampshire next month. And at that time we will most definitely be taking a tour of Zimmerman House in Manchester, NH.

We were wondering if anyone knows if the current owners of the Kalil House (also in Manchester) and/or the Baird House (Amherst, MA) might be amenable to visits from Wright enthusiasts? Anyone here ever had the pleasure to experience either of these two homes?


David

Jeff Myers
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Post by Jeff Myers »

TNguy can you get a better pic of Zimmerman's exterior especially the carport, as I am working on the house with little information.
I am hope you have a great trip up to New England. Someday I will be going up there on a trip.
JAT
Jeff T

Roderick Grant
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Post by Roderick Grant »

Kalil is just down the road from Zimmerman; you could walk easily. After the original owner died, his brother John inherited the house and moved in for a while. He has now put it on the market ($1.8M) and contact info is on "Wright on the Market." The property includes a "mother-in-law" house, not by FLW.

Baird died some years ago at more than 90. Since he had no family to leave his house to, he left it to the man he had hired to do some work on, I think, the heating system. The new owner attended one of the Conservancy conferences and seems personable enough. I don't recall his name, but you might try a letter, though the timing is a bit tight.

Kalil is one of the best-built Usonian Automatics, construction supervised by Eric Lloyd Wright. I've never been inside, but I think I might feel panicked, claustrophobe that I am. There is a front door and a double glass door by the dining area, otherwise there's no way out of the house, even by a window. The bedroom wing is accessible only at the end of the hallway. Don't fire marshals approve these things?

dkottum
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Post by dkottum »

Not knowing, who would guess Zimmerman and Kalil were built about the same time by the same architect.

What is the common element? Scale?

SDR
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Post by SDR »

Right -- Baird and Kalil are distinctly related, by their silhouette and forms -- Zimmerman would be the odd man out. Haven't visited, so can't speak to scale and presence. . .

SDR

DavidC
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Post by DavidC »

Jeff - the plan is to take many pictures at Zimmerman - and I'll certainly grab some fo the carport for you, too.


Roderick - thanks for all of the very helpful information. We plan on mailing off some notes tomorrow to the two homes - and we'll see what happens.

Have you felt claustrophobic in any other Automatics you've been in? Or is this just the feeling you get from the thought of Kalil in particular?

I don't happen to be claustrophobic, but some of rather tight gallery-ways (e.g. - Pope, Rosenbaum, etc) can get you thinking.


David

Roderick Grant
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Post by Roderick Grant »

David: It isn't the scale that bothers me. Pope's and Hanna's narrow halls aren't a problem at all. I don't like being in a place where escape is limited.

SDR: Baird and Kalil "distinctly related by their silhouette and forms"? Explain.

SDR
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Post by SDR »

I mean that both types are composed of rectangular volumes with thick flat roofs overhanging by various amounts. The materials and fenestration are completely different, of course.

I don't have a pic already loaded of Baird; Manson has a "tower" that is particularly reminiscent of Kalil. Sorry for the size disparity:


Image Kalil


Image Manson

DavidC
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Post by DavidC »


SDR
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Post by SDR »

Thank you, David. Wright uses his Usonian Automatic masonry decoratively, to the extent of cantilevering it beyond the house walls -- but even he knows not to create a carport of it like the one on the Baird house !

S

DavidC
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Post by DavidC »


SDR
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Post by SDR »

I've been drawn to the unusual asymmetrical pattern created on this wall by the alternation of operating and fixed glazing, from the first time I saw it.

How could it be that the operating units (you can see their handles) have larger openings than the fixed glass ? The exact opposite is usually the case. . .

Image


Perhaps the pattern is not asymmetrical when the whole wall is seen. . .?


SDR

peterm
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Post by peterm »

My guess is that if one were to look at the original drawings, the operable windows would have been designed to be closer to the same size and shape as the fixed glazed concrete blocks, but maybe for cost reasons, smaller stiles and rails were used, resulting in larger glazed openings.

But this is just speculation.

I don't particularly like the effect of the contrasting sizes of glazing, though I am sure that it could create some sort of interesting pattern.

SDR
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Post by SDR »

It seems like an unintended consequence, doesn't it. It certainly does make an almost op-art effect. One would have expected a more "rational" checkerboard, rather than the chevrons that resulted from having each operable unit stepped down from it's neighbor, starting at an implied centerline (which is off-center in the photo).

Every fourth unit is operable, resulting in a 25% coverage. The effect can also be seen in the exterior photo, above.

SDR

Jeff Myers
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Post by Jeff Myers »

I like the pattern of the operable and fixed glass. I wonder if this is the Usonian Automatic version of the Usonian Perf.
JAT
Jeff T

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