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There were so many alterations to the house, it is necessary to have a complete history of it on hand to understand it as a FLW design. Architect Jeff Chusid, who was a caretaker of the house after Harriet died, living in the apartment and working on the stabilization of the house, wrote a splendid book: "Saving Wright" (WW Norton & Co., 2011, 256 pp.)
Add to the problems of restoring or reconstituting the house would be the current trend among preservationists to save all the alterations made over the years, which would necessitate referring to the house as the work of Wright, Schindler, Lautner and Clark, plus a mention of Sam, who removed the garage door and took a sledge hammer to the blocks to widen the opening. Lloyd and a high school student also were involved in the construction, and would need credit. For an accurate version of FLW's vision, we must rely on Chad Solon, David Romero or Hugo Avila, or a collaboration of all of them. It should also include the view the house had in 1924, which was a much less-developed Hollywood, with orange groves south of the boulevard and no church tower limiting the view to the southwest.
The idea that the coupled divorced but niether would leave the house is a riot.
And the image down the boulevard without the church tower, redemptive.
I'm for a rebuild of it as planned by Wright.
In some cases, location can limit how a building is dealt with. Barnsdall and Dana, for instance, are located in places that make maintaining them as private residences unrealistic, Barnsdall in a public park surrounded by commercial development and Dana in a neighborhood that no one with the means to maintain such a splendid establishment would choose to live in. For others, like Ennis, the opposite is true: The neighborhood is too high end to put up with hoards of visitors creating traffic and noise problems. The neighborhood breathed a sigh of relief when Ennis stopped giving tours.
Freeman falls into the latter group. The cost of preserving or conserving it for continued private use, however true to the original image, or modified to accommodate alterations made over the years of the Freeman's residency by others, is prohibitive. The price set by USC is ludicrously overstated for a structure that is clinging to its hillside, totally uninhabitable. Time will tell, but I don't hold out much hope for Freeman's future. USC did not do well by it, and tagging it with a such a high price, even for Los Angeles, does nothing to ensure its future.
And who should really buy and restore this place is The Getty. They have the money and it could serve as a residence for visiting scholars.
"True restoration, whether for public or private use, is the most difficult; it places restrictions on the property that conservation and preservation don't."
Could you expand or exemplify ? I'm not sure I understand.
https://library.artstor.org/#/search/Wr ... =1;size=48
The last eleven drawings are for an earlier client named Freeman.
(Save that link, Juan; by inserting the name of a client following "Wright," you can access at least some drawings for each of Wright's projects, built and unbuilt.)
Can anyone elaborate on that ?
(...and if the exterior blocks were carefully dismantled and sold individually, a new owner could probably fund the entire restoration... )
The living room view, enmeshed in its architectural vista-frame, is one of Wright's finest moments. Above all, that feels to me the most important to save...[given the reality].