A New Path Forward for the School of Architecture Founded by Frank Lloyd Wright

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Paul Ringstrom
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A New Path Forward for the School of Architecture Founded by Frank Lloyd Wright

Post by Paul Ringstrom »

Owner of the G. Curtis Yelland House (1910), by Wm. Drummond

DRN
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Re: A New Path Forward for the School of Architecture Founded by Frank Lloyd Wright

Post by DRN »

To my understanding, this is the most logical and potentially successful “path forward” The School has presented over the last 20 years.

It would appear to be a win-win: The School is now located on an architecturally rich “campus” on which learning by design/build opportunities abound, and Cosanti/Arcosanti get an infrastructure based infusion of fresh effort with an educated, and results oriented group of people.

Hopefully no “old guard” exists at C/A that will resist change.

The Taliesins unfortunately have become too precious, at least in the Foundation’s view, and particularly since their UNESCO HS inclusion, for active use by the school. Besides, most learning by doing was being relegated to personal shelters and restoration work....experimental opportunities seemed limited at the Taliesins despite their necessity for this type of educational program.

Sounds great!

Roderick Grant
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Re: A New Path Forward for the School of Architecture Founded by Frank Lloyd Wright

Post by Roderick Grant »

The boost to Cosanti/Arcosanti is a major plus to be applauded. Now the question is: What happens to the Taliesins? It might allow them to edit some of the now-unnecessary accretions that accommodated the pupils, and restore every inch of both buildings to their 1959 states. But then, other than house museums, what would their function be? What will eventually happen to the remaining fellowship members? Given the move of the archive, there seems little reason for either place to be occupied by more than caretakers.

DRN
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Re: A New Path Forward for the School of Architecture Founded by Frank Lloyd Wright

Post by DRN »

That may be the Foundation’s intent....

SREcklund
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Re: A New Path Forward for the School of Architecture Founded by Frank Lloyd Wright

Post by SREcklund »

The real question to me is what happens to the Taliesin Fellows, old and new, organization and individuals ...
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

Roderick Grant
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Re: A New Path Forward for the School of Architecture Founded by Frank Lloyd Wright

Post by Roderick Grant »

Taliesin Fellows was founded independently of Taliesin by 7 former apprentices in Southern California - Paul Bogart, Robert Clark, Don Fairweather, John Geiger, Bradley Storrer (Bill's brother), Louis Wiehle and Eric Lloyd Wright - who attended a reunion at Wisconsin in 1987. It retained its independence for several years, until the cost of publishing the Journal, which began in 1990, became too costly. Shortly after its association with Taliesin, the independent members sort of disbanded. The early years of the quarterly Journal were the most interesting, with articles by a host of former apprentices and associates. If the current effort dies out, it is unlikely anything resembling the original Journal will ever resurface, so many of the apprentices have passed.

Tim
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Re: A New Path Forward for the School of Architecture Founded by Frank Lloyd Wright

Post by Tim »

Good news

JimM
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Re: A New Path Forward for the School of Architecture Founded by Frank Lloyd Wright

Post by JimM »

Roderick Grant wrote:
Sat Mar 20, 2021 12:26 pm
now-unnecessary accretions that accommodated the pupils, and restore every inch of both buildings to their 1959 states.
All but impossible, but restoration to the mid-late forties would convey best the architectural value of TWest. Guerrero's photos, and colored available, of that period document the degree to which TW was very much in simpatico with T1 as far as their origin from Wright's mind...


SDR
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Re: A New Path Forward for the School of Architecture Founded by Frank Lloyd Wright

Post by SDR »

From the above-linked piece:

"Before dying in 1959, he laid out in his will a vision for a community living, working and learning together on the land."

Can someone point me to, or quote or reproduce, the document referred to---a will, apparently ?

S

Rood
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Re: A New Path Forward for the School of Architecture Founded by Frank Lloyd Wright

Post by Rood »

Quoting from the article:

"Victor Sidy, a former school dean not bound by the non-disparagement agreement, told the magazine (Architectural Digest) that the heart of the disagreement was that the school is focused on teaching Wright’s philosophy to future generations while the foundation is more interested in 'tourism and workshops.' "

Sidy may be correct ... but I believe there is a bit more self-aggrandizement involved among certain parties. Thus it must have been a shock when the Pandemic virtually destroyed their one great income source: tourism.

Roderick Grant
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Re: A New Path Forward for the School of Architecture Founded by Frank Lloyd Wright

Post by Roderick Grant »

After 30 years of observation, I have concluded that every decision Taliesin makes is to ensure the security of the members who have been there (some) going back over 70 years. My guess is that David Dodge is the oldest of the crew, and Indira probably the youngest. Once they are all gone, and now that the school is no longer there, one can only wonder what will become of the sites.

toddlevin
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Re: A New Path Forward for the School of Architecture Founded by Frank Lloyd Wright

Post by toddlevin »

Exactly what the hell is The Taliesin School Of Architecture thinking - are they all so dim and unaware of the toxic history and legacy of Soleri and Arcosanti? - https://archinect.com/news/article/1502 ... xic-legacy and also https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesig ... steve-rose

Tom
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Re: A New Path Forward for the School of Architecture Founded by Frank Lloyd Wright

Post by Tom »

My guess is that they are probably not unaware but afterall Soleri is dead.
Both institutions must make a new start.

I think insisting on exclusive adherence to "Organic" principles of architecture is a mistake. But if you are going to call yourself the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture AND you are not located at Taliesin than what else can you really do?

Arcosanti makes sense because there is land on which students can build their rooms to board - at least.

DRN
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Re: A New Path Forward for the School of Architecture Founded by Frank Lloyd Wright

Post by DRN »

Both Wright's Taliesin Fellowship (later the FLW School of Architecture, once accredited) and the commune of Arcosanti were founded on the idea of the apprentice coming to learn from the master. Both offered something of value to the apprentice and master if both parties more or less played by the accepted rules for such relationships that have existed for millennia. The apprentice gained knowledge of the master's ways, and experienced the milieu, and the master got motivated labor. But both had toxic environments at times during their histories.

By most accounts, Wright's system worked and apprentices seemed to get from the program a proportion of what they put into it. Those with egos or talents approaching those of Wright's either chafed and left quickly and abruptly (Soleri, Mills), or they rapidly obtained what they sought and left amicably relatively soon after their arrival (Dow, Jones). Those that didn't like the situation left quickly; those that did, stayed longer. Those with talents that Wright needed or wanted in his studio were encouraged to stay on and often did (Peters, Tafel, Howe, Masselink, Davison, Besinger,....). After Wright's death, Mrs. Wright assumed the role of master, and her predilection for interpersonal intrigue went into overdrive often with unhealthy or troubled results. Following her death, the Fellowship transitioned into an accredited School of Architecture with some remnants of the apprentice/master system played out with the legacy members and the architectural firm, TAA/TA.

Soleri created a commune to build his vision based in part on Wright's apprentice system. I don't know much of his character or practices, but where Wright's program was funded with architectural commissions and apprentice tuitions, Soleri's was funded with tuitions, tourism, and bell/sculpture sales. Apprentices came to learn of the Arcology or have the experience of communal living, and they built the vision and made the art for sale to fund the commune and the master's vision.

The two do seem to have been cut from similar cloths and that relationship could, if merged properly, stabilize one another. The School of Architecture could gain a great site on which to practice its learning by doing, and Arcosanti could gain a serious, educated, and motivated group of workers. Institutional memory can be a good thing or a bad thing. One would hope that with the passing of Olgivanna and Paolo, the respective organizations recognized the unhealthy practices, stopped them, and healed themselves. The simple fact that a singular master is no longer in residence should lead to a more egalitarian existence for the members of both groups.

I still believe this could be a good thing.

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