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Ada Louis Huxtable: https://www.amazon.com/Frank-Lloyd-Wrig ... oks&sr=1-2
Finis Farr: https://www.amazon.com/Frank-Lloyd-Wrig ... oks&sr=1-1
Roderick is right about Twombly’s grasp of architecture...it was not good and delved in places into architectural criticism which was not his forte either. In one instance Twombly passed judgement on Wright’s successor firm, TAA, in a matter related to a construction failure that was beyond a biographer’s scope or understanding of engineering or construction practices.
I’ve found Wright’s life is best learned from the aggregate of many sources....
I think of "An Autobiography" as a text on FLW's approach to design rather than as a credible autobiography. There are many 'facts' of his history as told in it that do not ring true. He was a fabulist when it came to his personal life.
I still long for a generalist biographer like a David Brinkley, Doris Kearns Goodwin or the like to take on Wright and put his work and life in context with the greater culture.
When I recommend a Wright biography to a neophyte, it is Ada Louise Huxtable's, for its clarity, conciseness and brevity.
It is possible to recognize in the work the authority lent by a disciplined mind, which in aesthetic terms would qualify Wright as a master designer no matter the genre or "style" he might have chosen to pursue. But can anything we know explain the singular magnificence of it---the whole Prairie-period blossoming, the unique products of a restless search in the middle years, the final triumph of Usonia and its progeny ? Isn't the look of this work---the thing that immediately strikes the eye, both on the page and in the flesh---something apart from most of what mankind has brought forth ? Can any biography explain that ?
I would hesitate to give much latitude to Doris Kearns Goodwin, however. Her biographies expose a decided bias in her political leanings that color her objectivity on Lincoln, the Roosevelts or, especially, LBJ. Either David Brinkley or Hugh Downs would likely have done better.
But what I'm asking for might be impossible. Trying to define the intangible---in this case, the mood or spirit of these buildings, collectively, as presented solely by their physical appearance---much less succeed in naming the ingredients and their possible antecedents, may be beyond even the most expert and experienced architectural reporter. (I use the term as it is now used in journalism: "reporting" is no longer just the transmission to the public of the ingredients of a story; no, it is now the gathering of facts, as an act in itself, that is "reporting.")