Fir Tree House

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dkottum
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Joined: Sun Jan 09, 2005 8:52 pm
Location: Battle Lake, MN

Post by dkottum »

This house and Taliesin West are great examples of how beautiful space can be created with the most ordinary and rustic of materials, especially if they appear to be gathered from the surrounding landscape.

doug k

Roderick Grant
Posts: 10575
Joined: Wed Mar 29, 2006 7:48 am

Post by Roderick Grant »

Can you imagine this amount of excitement over the Davis House? Here are two houses, much the same in character, but detailed so differently that one is outstanding while the other is almost odd and decidedly bland.

SDR, I wonder if FLW did design the upholstered back segments of the banquet (images 12 and 13). It doesn't look like his work. More interesting is image 10 showing the canted boards interrupted by the cushion on the seat by the fireplace. The yellow is a perfect choice; all the rough and tumble of the house is balanced by an inviting, soft-colored fabric.

The hanging light fixture (12, 13) is magnificent!

DRN
Posts: 4044
Joined: Mon Jul 10, 2006 10:02 am
Location: Cherry Hill, NJ

Post by DRN »

Great house, good to finally see it.
The substructure in the living room brought to mind a lamella frame, not that it is a lamella, but it is reminiscent of one.

http://sketchucation.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=46044

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

Post by SDR »

Thanks for that, Doug -- there'd be no way to know about that detail without your inspection.

Right, RG -- it doesn't quite look like Wright. A sympatico designer, though ? Modular repetition . . .

The lounge chair is interesting. Do we suppose all the furnishing are by Mr Wright ?

Lamella dome at my home-town amusement park:

Image

Paul Ringstrom
Posts: 4400
Joined: Sat Sep 17, 2005 4:53 pm
Location: Mason City, IA

Post by Paul Ringstrom »

dkottum wrote:Curious how the were joined I climbed up for a look. The cross member was butted and fastened to the through member with perhaps a 1 1/2" x 1/4" steel plate about 6' long, one on top and (I think I remember) one on the bottom, lag bolts about a foot apart fastening the steel to the wood. The (fir?) structural members were then wrapped on the three visible sides with 1/8" Luan plywood.

Another trick from the magician.
Wouldn't this violate TRUTH and HONESTY in the use of and nature of materials? I think E. Fay Jones treated this type of interior super-structure in a more honest way by leaving the steel connectors exposed.

This is the equivalent of using brick walls on a cantilevered balcony in the Harold Price Jr. House: http://rbeuc.freesuperhost.com/english/ ... use33.html

of desert masonry on a cantilevered balcony in the Arch Oboler House: http://savewright.org/wright_chat/viewt ... 9cfc7b6369

As Wright could have said: "Don't do as I do, do as I say."
Owner of the G. Curtis Yelland House (1910), by Wm. Drummond

Deke
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Joined: Thu Jul 27, 2006 10:18 am
Location: Los Angeles
Contact:

Post by Deke »

What a treat to see a lesser known work. It makes me wonder what other seldom-photographed homes are out there. Price is one of them. This was has a terrific mix of style and rustic cabin-ness. The use of shingles on the exterior walls is pretty unique, and I can't think of a house with such a variety of designed furnishings. Love to see the furniture detail sheets, but alas I'm no long in LA with access to the Getty.

Deke

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

Post by Rood »

I must say, the Friedman home is in better shape now than at any previous time. When I spent the night there in the 70's, there was no lush lawn, and no pool. Acreage in front of the living room down to the stream and mountain-side to the west was used for cattle-grazing, and the ground was brown-dry, heavily overgrazed, and very rocky ... and ... strewn with dried cow-dung ... all right up to the living room terrace.

The house is about 20 miles east of Santa Fe, maybe ten miles north of Interstate 25 and just off NM Highway 63. Indeed, the back of the house is barely 50 feet west of Highway 63, only it is so well concealed behind bushes that ordinarily you wouldn't know it was there. The entry gate south of the house gives it away, of course, only you have to look close or you'll drive right on by.

I am surprised mention has not been made of the living room "rug".

N.B. By the way, SDR, the photos are by Trevor Tondro ... not BBP
Last edited by Rood on Mon Apr 01, 2013 9:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Rood
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Location: Goodyear, AZ 85338

Post by Rood »

Deke wrote:What a treat to see a lesser known work. ... Love to see the furniture detail sheets, but alas I'm no long in LA with access to the Getty. Deke
Better be quick about it. Reportedly ... Columbia wants to restrict, or end Getty access to Wright's archives.

Deke
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Location: Los Angeles
Contact:

Post by Deke »

Not sure how Columbia could do that. The Getty paid for the photo-documentation of the archive and a set of photos was part of the bargain. As was the microfiche of all the correspondence.

Deke

Tom
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Joined: Sun Jan 30, 2011 7:53 pm
Location: Black Mountain, NC

Post by Tom »

The structural framing of the large room seems like an conscious attempt by Wright to somehow raise, rotate, or by some other manner bring the modular grid of the plan more explicitly into the third dimension.

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

Post by SDR »

Speaking of the floor covering, and the grid, I wonder why no one has thought before to make a patchwork carpet following the lines of the grid. It would seem an obvious move -- for better or worse -- when carpeting was desired in a Usonian . . .

SDR

Education Professor
Posts: 594
Joined: Tue Jul 05, 2005 3:10 pm

Post by Education Professor »

It is nice to learn more about this mostly unknown project. Does anyone have some photos of the Davis house that can be posted for comparative purposes?

EP

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

Post by SDR »

Image

Image

Image

Image

Black and White photos © W A Storrer

Laurie Virr
Posts: 472
Joined: Sat Jul 25, 2009 5:32 pm

Post by Laurie Virr »

I met Richard Davis and toured his house in 1964. He was flamboyant, but kind and generous.

Frank Lloyd Wright must have assessed his personality, and decided that he was a candidate for a scheme that the architect first envisaged a quarter of a century previously, but never had realized in built form.

The house was a great disappointment. The sense of human scale that is the overwhelming characteristic of the architect’s designs, was nowhere to be experienced in the living/dining area. Rather than being designed from the inside out, it appeared that the reverse was the case: the external form dictated everything.

Internally, the excessive ceiling height in the living/ dining achieved little other than increase the volume of space to be heated in a MidWest winter.

Regretfully, I had to assign the house to that group of structures that Frank Lloyd Wright determined to build,
come what may. In that respect, Richard Davis joined Harold Price and Solomon Guggenheim.

I departed Marion, Indiana, with the conviction that had the Lake Tahoe scheme proceeded, the barges would have been top heavy. The fir tree theme had been taken a stretch too far.

DRN
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Joined: Mon Jul 10, 2006 10:02 am
Location: Cherry Hill, NJ

Post by DRN »

A good quality satellite photo of Friedman is available on GoogleEarth and GoogleMaps. Follow NM63 north from Pecos about 5MI (it follows the river). The characteristically angular roof will be visible on the west side of the road...Rood wasn't kidding when he said it was close to the road. Was it flood plain avoidance, or locating at the highest elevation on the property from which to survey the view that drove the placement?

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