Article: FLW and the Achitectural War for NYC's Skyline

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SDR
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Post by SDR »


Reidy
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Post by Reidy »

Downtown LA had a similar black-and-gold deco building, Richfield Oil, demolished 50 years ago.

JimM
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Post by JimM »

Article reminds me of Tafel relaying a story Wright laughed about often... supposedly having lunch with Hood in New York and Wright telling him of his admiration for the McGraw-Hill building. "Ray, you must get great satisfaction having designed that fine structure. Tell me, what do you think of when seeing it each time?" Hoods response: "Frank, every time I think of the building, or look at it, I think of all the sh** that goes down the soil lines."

And... some time after Hood's death Wright was addressing a luncheon of architects. During a visit to Hood's office while the Daily News building was being designed, Wright claimed to have used the tip of his cane to draw a line across an elevation of the building and proclaiming "Ray, you just stop the whole thing here". An architect attending the luncheon, who happened to have been Hood's head draftsman, excitedly jumped to his feet and assured all in attendance that the building was designed from the start exactly as it was built. As the room fell silent Wright smiled and in "that" voice said, "Well, there you are!" and simply proceeded with his remarks.

The Daily News (1929) is significant considering his work to date, since Hood dispensed with the usual Art Deco embellishments making it one of the first "flat tops".

SDR
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Post by SDR »

That's priceless. Anecdotes likes this, told as Jim does, bestow the kiss of reality to the endless and ongoing saga that is the story of Wright's time on Earth.
(I'm reading the opening essay in "The Future of Architecture"---which is a rehash of past Wright writing---where he talks of architecture emanating from and originating in the earth itself . . .)

So, the Daily News Building was Hood's precursor to his Rockefeller Center towers, beginning in the following year ?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rockefeller_Center

S

Matt2
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Post by Matt2 »

There's also the story of Johnson complimenting Hood on the building, but noting that it would have been better without all the decoration at the top. This from a young architectural gadfly to an experienced architect.

SDR
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Post by SDR »

The idealism of youth, expressed as protest to the establishment, is the expected state of affairs in any generation . . . ?

S

Roderick Grant
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Post by Roderick Grant »

Matt2, the comment by Johnson concerned the McGraw-Hill building, which has some Moderne excrescence at its top, while Daily News is flat.

Matt2
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Post by Matt2 »

Rod, you are right. I should have looked that up first. It had to do with the inclusion of that project in the famous MOMA exhibition.

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