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DRN
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Post by DRN »

The 1952 design for Affleck reminds me in some respects of Paul Rudolph's Wallace house about 10 years later....
https://www.google.com/search?biw=1346& ... mIq_hRvKrU

SDR
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Location: San Francisco

Post by SDR »


Roderick Grant
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Post by Roderick Grant »

To call the Affleck Project a tortured Jester would be generous. It may well have been the work of Howe, as you suggest, SDR, but with all those circles and inverted lunettes, I would favor Wes for this one.

It is a bit early for FLW not to have had anything to do with it; it looks more like FLW doing a bit of pocket-picking, designing something he knew Affleck would never follow through with, just for the commission ... as he did with Ayn Rand.

SDR
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Location: San Francisco

Post by SDR »

The "opus" I referred to was the drawing, not the house---perhaps the wrong term . . .

In studying these drawings, Bill and I thought that the lunette windows were a bit . . . off. It was his opinion, as well, that the red "flora" sprinkled about were likely to be Mr Wright's contribution to the rendering.

Was Wes really given design work to do ?

S

wjsaia
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Joined: Sat Aug 26, 2006 6:53 pm

Post by wjsaia »

DRN wrote: My question is where is Heritage getting all of these drawing sets?...do they network?...is this a mother load from a single collector or his/her estate?...did these drawings and prints "walk" out of Taliesin?...were these drawings and prints part of the mid-1980's drawing sale held by Taliesin?...were these sent by Taliesin to a preferred contractor for pricing?
With the exception of the several items noted to have the provenance of coming from Kelly Oliver's archives, there is no question in my mind but that almost all of the drawings, including original colored-and-FLlW-signed presentation drawings and sets of original transparencies of working drawing that carry Wright's initials in red squares (and sets of blueprints and diazo prints that, personally, as reproductions, I wouldn't consider particularly valuable but nevertheless attract significant price realizations) were stolen from Taliesin by one individual around 1956 to 1958.

There were three Heritage Auctions sales that I know of that included this material, April 16, 2018, October 21, 2018, and April 15, 2019.

Coming up tomorrow, June 5, 2019, there is another sale by a different auction house, Wright20, that includes eight original FLlW-signed preliminary drawings of the Price Tower (Lots 410, 411, 413, 414, 415, 416, 421 and 422), two of the Charoudi cottage (Lots 424 and 455), two of the Haynes house (Lots 452 and 457), and three of the Rayward house (Lots 453, 454, aned 456). I believe the same person who stole the various Wright drawings and sets of prints sold through Heritage Auctions also took these from Taliesin.

https://www.wright20.com/artists/frank-lloyd-wright/

None of the material sold in the Heritage Auctions sales or now offered in tomorrow’s Wright20 sale was part of the 1980 sale by the Foundation that DRN refers to and ought never to have left Taliesin. None of these drawings bears an embossed stamp of the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation and identification number that Bruce Pfeiffer and his assistants began to place on Wright’s original drawings that had been in the Foundation’s possession in 1959. They were stolen prior to any such archival effort at Taliesin. A few of the un-built projects represented in the Heritage Auctions sales are of projects never known to Bruce; they are not recorded in Taschen’s three-volume set of supposedly complete works or in any other way, save for the pages still up on the Heritage Auctions website.

WJS
Last edited by wjsaia on Tue Jun 04, 2019 1:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.

SREcklund
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Post by SREcklund »

wjsaia wrote:
DRN wrote: My question is where is Heritage getting all of these drawing sets?...do they network?...is this a mother load from a single collector or his/her estate?...did these drawings and prints "walk" out of Taliesin?...were these drawings and prints part of the mid-1980's drawing sale held by Taliesin?...were these sent by Taliesin to a preferred contractor for pricing?
With the exception of the several items noted to have the provenance of coming from Kelly Oliver's archives, there is no question in my mind but that almost all of the drawings, including original colored-and-FLlW-signed presentation drawings and sets of original transparencies of working drawing that carry Wright's initials in red squares (and sets of blueprints and diazo prints that, personally, as reproductions, I wouldn't consider particularly valuable but nevertheless attract significant price realizations) were stolen from Taliesin by one individual around 1956 to 1958.

There were three Heritage Auctions sales that I know of that included this material, April 16, 2018, October 31, 2018, and April 15, 2019.

Coming up tomorrow, June 5, 2019, there is another sale by a different auction house, Wright20, that includes eight original FLlW-signed preliminary drawings of the Price Tower (Lots 410, 411, 413, 414, 415, 416, 421 and 422), two of the Charoudi cottage (Lots 424 and 455), two of the Haynes house (Lots 452 and 457), and three of the Rayward house (Lots 453, 454, aned 456). I believe the same person who stole the various Wright drawings and sets of prints sold through Heritage Auctions also took these from Taliesin.

https://www.wright20.com/artists/frank-lloyd-wright/

None of the material sold in the Heritage Auctions sales or now offered in tomorrow’s Wright20 sale was part of the 1980 sale by the Foundation that DRN refers to and ought never to have left Taliesin. None of these drawings bears an embossed stamp of the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation and identification number that Bruce Pfeiffer and his assistants began to place on Wright’s original drawings that had been in the Foundation’s possession in 1959. They were stolen prior to any such archival effort at Taliesin. A few of the un-built projects represented in the Heritage Auctions sales are of projects never known to Bruce; they are not recorded in Taschen’s three-volume set of supposedly complete works or in any other way, save for the pages still up on the Heritage Auctions website.

WJS
:shock: :(
Docent, Hollyhock House - Hollywood, CA
Humble student of the Master

"Youth is a circumstance you can't do anything about. The trick is to grow up without getting old." - Frank Lloyd Wright

SDR
Posts: 19704
Joined: Sat Jun 17, 2006 11:33 pm
Location: San Francisco

Post by SDR »

In typical fashion, WJS (Bill Schwarz) spent considerable time studying the various auction-house offerings linked and discussed in this thread before
reaching the conclusion he outlines above. Bill is not one to offer opinions rashly or prematurely. The name of the individual he believes responsible for
the theft of the Taliesin material is readily found, on pages linked in Bill's post, following "(from the) collection of . . ."

Whether the materials were consigned to the two auction houses by the man himself, or by his heirs, is not yet clear. What should be clear is that a
handsome profit is being realized, both by the seller and by the auctioneers, while the materials themselves remain in private hands---in some cases at
least, prized for the signature found on them more than for their irreplaceable content.

S

Tom
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Location: Black Mountain, NC

Post by Tom »


Tom
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Post by Tom »

Only now made the connection between that unbuilt Affleck project and the Loeb project.

Matt2
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Post by Matt2 »

Has anyone compared correspondence with drawings to see if there are other unknown or missing projects floating around? Luckily Wright kept both so there should be letters from every client that ever cut him a check.

Tom
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Post by Tom »

Tom wrote:Only now made the connection between that unbuilt Affleck project and the Loeb project.
Practically identical projects.
However, there are no stairs in Affleck.

DRN
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Post by DRN »

From the Varenhorst & Hickman collection at Wichita State University:
http://specialcollections.wichita.edu/c ... 6-2-a.html
Box 19 FF 16 Spencer Residence, Specifications for House for Mr. and Mrs. Dudley W. Spencer, Brandywine Head, Delaware, Frank Lloyd Wright, Architect
Per the WSU bios and the Geiger list, Hickman (Taliesin 1947-1954) left before the Spencer specs would have been prepared in 1956. Varenhorst (Taliesin 1957-1958) was at Taliesin after Spencer specs were completed in 1956. Varenhorst does not show up in the Spencer correspondence that I have read. The printed set of Spencer specs was listed as sold by Erich Jon Dunwell (Varenhorst's estate?) to WSU ca.2006.

A printed set of Spencer construction drawings was sold at Heritage Auctions in April 2019 among the other items we have discussed in this thread. No provenance was given, but with the Varenhorst/Dunwell listing on similar items sold 2 months later at Wright20 on June 5, it would seem very plausible that Varenhorst took these items from Taliesin in 1958 and that Erich Dunwell (Varenhorst's heir?) has been selling them following Varenhorst's death in 1997.
Last edited by DRN on Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:16 am, edited 1 time in total.

DRN
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Location: Cherry Hill, NJ

Post by DRN »

Varenhorst likely could have accessed projects he was not connected with...he could have legitimately worked on a similar project which may have been a derivation of the plan type. John Howe was known to assign new apprentices to trace a residential drawing set of a past project to learn studio standards for drafting, but the apprentice would only have kept the apprentice made tracing, not the original...I'm also not aware of spec books being needed for this exercise. It was my understanding that apprentices were not to keep these items used for reference. Likewise, prints of drawings were made in town and purchased for project use, not as keepsakes for apprentices.

Apparently from what Bruce Pfeiffer described, the project files containing the drawings and specifications were readily accessible to those working in the drafting room in the 1950's and earlier. Bruce later started to control access to the inactive Wright era files, eventually moving them to a separate building.
Last edited by DRN on Thu Jun 06, 2019 5:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.

SDR
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Post by SDR »

That is in accord with what I've heard from others who were there. Individual drafters were not credited with their work; the resulting drawings were Taliesin property---as is typical of any office ?

S

Roderick Grant
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Post by Roderick Grant »

There were two hefty 'books' Geiger referred to as 'the bible' which consisted of drawings of most if not all of the buildings FLW had designed. They just lay about the T-West drafting room for anyone to page through during the brief time I was there in '62. They were bound, so it would not have been easy to swipe anything, but copying early drawings would have been very easy to do.

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