Vintage photos of Quintin and Ruth Blair house

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peterm
Posts: 6297
Joined: Thu Mar 13, 2008 10:27 am
Location: Chicago, Il.---Oskaloosa, Ia.

Vintage photos of Quintin and Ruth Blair house

Post by peterm »

"A Modern House in the Old West":
http://www.steinerag.com/flw/Artifact%2 ... HH6-56.htm

I had never noticed these terrific interior shots before. The nook for the baby grand in the middle of the glass wall is downright surreal. Duchamp and Breton would approve!

DRN
Posts: 4058
Joined: Mon Jul 10, 2006 10:02 am
Location: Cherry Hill, NJ

Post by DRN »

Great find...I had never seen so many pics of the house as originally built. Compare those to these taken in March, 1989:

http://pdfhost.focus.nps.gov/docs/NRHP/ ... 000998.pdf

By 1989, the carport seems enlarged/enclosed, the living room shed roof looks thickened (possibly hiding A/C ducts above the thin roof plane?), and a strange stone and glass pier has grown next to the house's bedroom(?) wing.

Storer noted that Bruce Goff had designed some alterations to the house...the connection of Mrs. Blair to Goff in Chicago in the '30's, noted in the 1956 article, might explain that.

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

Post by Roderick Grant »

That odd goiter on the living room roof looks like a structural adjustment, perhaps to address sagging of the original under-built structure. There is a wood structure atop the chimney stack that may conceal an air conditioner, so I suppose the ducts may have been sprawled across the roof, but I don't recall seeing any interiors with vents interrupting the ceiling panelling.

The plan (Mono 8/31) indicates that the piano was intended to be turned 90 degrees counterclockwise from the position shown, with the keyboard exposed and the long, hinged side parallel to the stone wall, probably for sound projection.

The Blairs attended the 1986 FLW Homeowners' Conference in Los Angeles. Very nice couple. Are they still there? One or both?

DRN
Posts: 4058
Joined: Mon Jul 10, 2006 10:02 am
Location: Cherry Hill, NJ

Post by DRN »

In the 1989 pics, 9of12 indicates an A/C diffuser at each of the high living room ceiling corners that were not present in 1956. Possibly A/C was added when some structural issues were adressed?

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

Post by Rood »

When I visited the Blair House in 1979 (with my sister and her 3 month-old son, visiting from their home in Bolivia) the piano keyboard did face into the living room, so these pictures are a surprise. Unlike these photographs, the inner portion of the piano nook looked dark and forbidding... much like the piano nook carved into the stone wall of the Cabaret Theatre at Taliesin West.

Mrs. Blair also dragged out Goff's drawings for me to inspect. I said nothing, but they were a shock. Next to Wright's living room was a two-story monstrosity ... way out of scale with Wright's design. Mrs. Blair indicated that they were all but ready to build.

After returning to the desert I naturally told Johnny about Goff's plans ... and that's the last I ever heard of his addition. Johnny was a quiet, unassuming fellow, but when he put his foot down he put his foot down.

clydethecat
Posts: 125
Joined: Thu May 24, 2012 8:29 pm

Post by clydethecat »

Roderick Grant wrote: The plan (Mono 8/31) indicates that the piano was intended to be turned 90 degrees counterclockwise from the position shown, with the keyboard exposed and the long, hinged side parallel to the stone wall, probably for sound projection.
Yeah, it's unplayable as photographed. Doesn't look like there's enough room between the keyboard and the wall for a human on a bench. Some art director probably moved it.

ross
Posts: 223
Joined: Fri Apr 22, 2011 10:49 am

Post by ross »


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