Help Put Wright's Call Building Model Back At Taliesin

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PrairieMod
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Help Put Wright's Call Building Model Back At Taliesin

Post by PrairieMod »

Wright Chatters have the opportunity to help fund one of the most exciting Frank Lloyd Wright-related projects to date. A newly launched Kickstarter campaign by the Organic Architecture + Design Archives looks to raise funds to recreate and replace the iconic San Francisco Call Building model, which previously resided at Taliesin, the Wisconsin home of Frank Lloyd Wright.

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When the Organic Architecture and Design Archives, Inc. (OAD), a non-profit 501(c)(3) charitable corporation, was founded in November 2013, part of the stated mission was to promote awareness of the Organic principles as practiced and professed by Frank Lloyd Wright.

With that mission in mind, we have embarked on a project to construct an exact full-size replica of the Call Building model that once graced Mr. Wright’s office at Taliesin and, later, the upper hallway above the entry of Hillside Home School. This almost eight foot tall model, built originally for the 1940 MoMA exhibition, was always quite an inspiring spectacle, providing a bold vertical counterpoint to the horizontal emphasis of both Taliesin and Hillside.

In 2013, as part of the sale of the Frank Lloyd Wright Archives, the original San Francisco Call Building model was transferred to the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA). The OAD Archives believes this model was an integral part of the design of Taliesin, so our goal is to have a replica model professionally built to physically replace the original model and once again occupy its rightful place.

OAD Archives, Inc. is undertaking the project management and fundraising necessary to complete the research and execution of an exact replica of this important Wright-designed model. To that end, we have permission and full endorsement of the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation, as well as MoMA and the Avery Library to undertake this construction. The OAD Archives has also contracted with master woodworker Stafford Norris III to recreate the famous model. Stafford and Eric O'Malley from the OAD Archives recently traveled to New York to view the original model at the MoMA, complete a full set of detail measurements, and take numerous reference photos.

When the model is finished, it will be loaned under special agreement to Taliesin Preservation Incorporated (who manage the restoration and tours of Taliesin) and put back on display at Frank Lloyd Wright's Taliesin.

Please donate to this important project and be a part of returning a replica of this iconic Frank Lloyd Wright-designed model back to its home to inspire those visiting Taliesin for generations to come. Follow the link below to find out how you can participate in backing this exciting and historic project:

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/10 ... nav_search

Roderick Grant
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Post by Roderick Grant »

A goal should be announced. This might cost as much as building the original structure would have in its day.

DavidC
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Post by DavidC »

Roderick Grant wrote:A goal should be announced. This might cost as much as building the original structure would have in its day.
There is a goal of $5,000 listed on the linked Kickstarter site - w/ 59 days left to go to meet it.


David

DRN
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Post by DRN »

Who needs craftsmen anymore? A 3-D printer could poop that thing out in a day or two for the cost of the plastic goo.....yeah right.

Sounds like a worthy project...the original, if I remember correctly, was plaster? Wright had some other plaster models built in Japan; their photos have been in some of the books he published.

PrairieMod
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Post by PrairieMod »

As stated at the Kickstarter project page, we're trying to raise the remaining $5000 needed to complete the construction of the model.

Interestingly, there have actually been two iterations of the Call Building Model--the original plaster model from when it was first exhibited in Chicago in 1914 and the subsequent larger wooden model that was created in 1940 for the MoMA "Show to End All Shows."

It was the later, larger model that so many remember seeing at Taliesin in later years and which we are trying to replicate and put back.

Thanks for everyone's help in hopefully seeing this exciting project successfully come to life!

SDR
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Post by SDR »

What a great project. While I hardly think that Wright's Taliesin office was designed around the model (perhaps there was almost no other place to house and display this giant totem ?), the historic placement does seem ripe for replication.

It's hard to imagine a design more perfectly adapted to modeling in wood ! I'm happy to hear that Stafford Norris has been given the job; this man is well on his way to being the go-to guy for sensitive Wright-related construction/reconstruction tasks. I wonder if he will find a way to make the model in more than one piece, for ease and safety of transport and installation . . .

SDR

Paul Ringstrom
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Post by Paul Ringstrom »

SDR wrote: I wonder if he will find a way to make the model in more than one piece, for ease and safety of transport and installation . . .SDR
This is a good idea, if possible. Transporting this behemoth could be a problem.
Owner of the G. Curtis Yelland House (1910), by Wm. Drummond

PrairieMod
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Post by PrairieMod »

Thanks to everyone who supported the project so far--the first day was a great success for the Call Building Kickstarter campaign! The effort to raise the remaining funds needed to build a replica of Frank Lloyd Wright's iconic San Francisco Call Building Model and return it to its original home at Taliesin in Spring Green, WI is off to a great start with 1/5th of the goal reached. There's still a ways to go and we need as much support as possible to ensure this amazing model is put back in the "Wright" place. Please help us in that goal by donating here:

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/10 ... ding-model

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DRN
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Post by DRN »

As an aside, was the model the complete project or just the tower portion of the proposed scheme? The sketches and rendering seem to have the thin slab-like tower engaged with a lower wider building that has similar detailing. Was the low building to be new construction, or a facelift of an existing building? The domed Beaux-Arts Call building is visible to the left of Wright's composition in the renderings...

Was Wright's tower to be to the right of the Call building in this image?
http://www.timeshutter.com/sites/defaul ... g-2-NB.jpg

Is this post-1906 quake pic taken from the same angle as Wright's perspective rendering?
http://images.fineartamerica.com/images ... re-art.jpg

The Beaux-Arts Call was re-clothed later in the 20th Century to a vaguely Art Deco appearance...was Wright's proposed scheme to the right and just down the street?
http://www.timeshutter.com/sites/defaul ... ped_02.jpg

I find the prospect that Wright "edited out" part of his scheme when having the model made interesting. It would seem he saw the tower part as "the thing". The form is elegant and the object is so much more sculptural and pure with the reality removed.

Roderick Grant
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Post by Roderick Grant »

There were two versions of the design. First, just the slab, as appears in Wendingen, pp 80-1, then with a ten-story addition placed between the slab and the older building, as shown in "The Drawings Of FLW" by Arthur Drexler, plate 45. The original was deemed too narrow with limited floor space, so the addition, which is in perfect harmony with the slab, added floor space to the lower floors.

SDR
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Post by SDR »


RonMcCrea
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Post by RonMcCrea »

This is a bit off-topic, but seeing this model makes me think of how the publishers of newspapers used to have aspirations for the buildings that housed them. They wanted public monuments to glorify themselves (think of Col. Robert R. McCormick's Tribune Tower) but also to express the institutional and constitutional importance of the newspaper in American democracy. The Call Building would have stood out in the skyline of the City by the Bay.

Alas, many of those distinguished newspaper office buildings -- three generations of my family worked in newspapers -- are being sold for other uses as the papers shrink or close. And today's newspapers are owned by publicly traded companies that want no frills and really don't care about making architectural statements.

I always thought it sad that Wright's favorite publisher and friend William T. Evjue, founder of the Madison Capital Times, never commissioned a him to design a newspaper office. He was a great Progressive, but I think he might have been too cheap.

Rood
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Post by Rood »

Perhaps it is because at heart Mr. Evjue was a parsimonious Norwegian, but then he championed Mr. Wright's Monona Terrace project until the day he died, and that counts him one. Today his name is associated with more than one public institution.

As for newspapers, we sometimes forget the structural "ideas" seen today in the Johnson Wax buildings were explicitly displayed in Mr. Wright's 1931 design for the Capitol Journal newspaper building for Salem, Oregon, where, instead of being hidden, the printing processes were visibly showcased for all to see.

Paul Ringstrom
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Post by Paul Ringstrom »

'Frank Lloyd Wright's Design for the "Capital Journal," Salem, Oregon (1932),' by Donald Leslie Johnson, Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians, Vol. 55, No. 1 (Mar., 1996), pp. 58-65
Owner of the G. Curtis Yelland House (1910), by Wm. Drummond

DRN
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Post by DRN »

The journal Paul references can be purchased here:

http://www.jstor.org/stable/991055?seq= ... b_contents

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