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The Fisherman and the Genii
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Tom



Joined: 30 Jan 2011
Posts: 1930
Location: Black Mountain, NC

PostPosted: Sun Jul 17, 2011 9:22 am    Post subject: The Fisherman and the Genii Reply with quote

In the vaulted playroom of the Home and Studio in Oak Park there is the mural: "The Fisherman and the Genii." In M1 Pfieffer states that Wright designed it (although Charles Corwin painted it) and called it "the first straight line ornament." That obviously refers to the abstraction of the Genii. But last time I was there I remember being struck by a building painted on that mural either to the left of the Fisherman at his elbow or to his right a little below the knee, but I remember thinking it was a premonition or even a conscious prototype for Unity Temple built some 10 years later. Anybody know what I'm talking about here and in addition to reading the Arabian Knights what else would Wright have been looking at -at this time? I assume Wright had a library although I've never seen any pictures of it in any of his homes? Would Pfieffer have a list of the libraries contents?
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Tom



Joined: 30 Jan 2011
Posts: 1930
Location: Black Mountain, NC

PostPosted: Sun Jul 17, 2011 9:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The influence of the Far East is always pointed to as major in Wright's work. But what of the Middle East?
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Reidy



Joined: 07 Jan 2005
Posts: 1336
Location: Northern CA

PostPosted: Sun Jul 17, 2011 9:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't think the influence amounts to much. Freeman and Fallingwater have basins of running water just outside their front doors, which Wright may have picked up from the mideastern custom.

When he redesigned the Ennis interior for the Nesbitts (who didn't follow through on most of it) he proposed to name the house "Sijistan."
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Paul Ringstrom



Joined: 17 Sep 2005
Posts: 3665
Location: Mason City, IA

PostPosted: Sun Jul 17, 2011 10:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think the FLW Home & Studio Archive has a listing of the books in his library pre-1909.
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Tom



Joined: 30 Jan 2011
Posts: 1930
Location: Black Mountain, NC

PostPosted: Sun Jul 17, 2011 11:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Okay, so I emailed the research center to ask about this. Thanks. Here is the link I used, not that easy to locate. At the bottom of the window are red letters: "ASK THE RESEARCH CENTER" That's the link if anybody else is interested.


http://gowright.org/libcat/libcat2.php
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Tom



Joined: 30 Jan 2011
Posts: 1930
Location: Black Mountain, NC

PostPosted: Sun Jul 17, 2011 11:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

"The Fisherman and the Genii" is a chapter in the Arabian Knights. Never read that book.
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Tom



Joined: 30 Jan 2011
Posts: 1930
Location: Black Mountain, NC

PostPosted: Sun Jul 17, 2011 3:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hmm, Pfieffer attributes the painting of the mural to Corwin, but Ann Abernathy attributes it to Orlando Giannini.
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DRN



Joined: 10 Jul 2006
Posts: 3072
Location: Cherry Hill, NJ

PostPosted: Mon Jul 18, 2011 10:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

My understanding was that the mural of the Fisherman and the Genie was taken from the Arabian Nights and was located in FllW and Catherine's own bedroom. The protagonist in the story is a fisherman who casts his net continually just to feed his wife and three children. In one of his hauls he finds a vessel containing the genie. Given Wright's position as an artist architect, just starting out with a growing family to feed, I could see this story and image appealing to FllW.

I also recall reading somewhere or hearing on a tour that the mural was painted by Giannini not Corwin.
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Reidy



Joined: 07 Jan 2005
Posts: 1336
Location: Northern CA

PostPosted: Mon Jul 18, 2011 12:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Frank & Catherine's room has an American Indian mural.

I heard the Giannini story on a tour, too.
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Roderick Grant



Joined: 29 Mar 2006
Posts: 7328

PostPosted: Mon Jul 18, 2011 12:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

"The Fisherman and the Genii" is in the playroom. Indianesque figures are featured at either end of the master bedroom without any literary connotations. All were done by Giannini.
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Tom



Joined: 30 Jan 2011
Posts: 1930
Location: Black Mountain, NC

PostPosted: Mon Jul 18, 2011 12:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

DRN: That makes some sense to me. Wright (the Fisherman) has a vision of architecture (the Genii) and in this sense Wright identifies with this particular chapter of the Arabian Knights. I think along the shoreline of this mural there is a building that in a sense is an architectural self portrait of Wright, "snuck in" like Michaelangelo's portrait in the Last Judgement in the Sistine chapel, but less obviously so because it is a building and not his actual face.
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Meisolus



Joined: 06 Jun 2010
Posts: 31

PostPosted: Sat Jan 09, 2016 4:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I realize that I'm resurrecting a very old thread, but did anyone find out what was the exact copy of the Arabian Nights that Wright owned? There are practically endless versions of the tales out there, and no two seem to contain the exact same collection of stories (of which there are literally hundreds). It would be helpful to know which stories he was familiar with when analyzing his architecture. Thanks!
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Paul Ringstrom



Joined: 17 Sep 2005
Posts: 3665
Location: Mason City, IA

PostPosted: Sun Jan 10, 2016 1:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Meisolus wrote:
I realize that I'm resurrecting a very old thread, but did anyone find out what was the exact copy of the Arabian Nights that Wright owned? There are practically endless versions of the tales out there, and no two seem to contain the exact same collection of stories (of which there are literally hundreds). It would be helpful to know which stories he was familiar with when analyzing his architecture. Thanks!


Contact the FLW Home & Studio archives. I believe they have all of Wright's original books from that era.
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Owner of the G. Curtis Yelland House (1910), by Wm. Drummond
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DRN



Joined: 10 Jul 2006
Posts: 3072
Location: Cherry Hill, NJ

PostPosted: Thu May 11, 2017 4:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

See the second paragraph in this link to a bio of artist Charles Abel Corwin, brother of architect Cecil Sherman Corwin:

https://schwartzcollection.com/artist/charles-corwin/
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SDR



Joined: 17 Jun 2006
Posts: 13970
Location: San Francisco

PostPosted: Thu May 11, 2017 7:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So -- Corwin, or Giannini ? Rockwell, or Parrish ? Bradley, or Beardsley ?

SDR
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