Frank Lloyd Wright’s buildings on the West Coast have not been thoroughly covered in print until now. Between 1909 and 1959, Wright designed a total of 38 structures up and down the West Coast, from Seattle to Southern California. These include well-known structures such as the Marin County Civic Center and Hollyhock House in Los Angeles, and many lesser-known gems such as the 1909 Stewart House near Santa Barbara.
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About the Author
MARK ANTHONY WILSON is an architectural historian who has been writing and teaching about architecture for more than thirty-five years. He holds a B.A. in history from UC Berkeley and an M.A. in history and media from California State University, East Bay.
As the son of a fashion illustrator, JOEL PULIATTI was destined to see things graphically. He was brought up as an artist in New York, is a graduate of Parsons School of Design, and has been published nationally as an architectural and a fine arts photographer.
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Wright created his own word to describe his California residential architecture: “Romanza.” This term implied that his
California residences were designed to blend in with their romantic settings in individual ways, taking into account the unique beauty of each site. These sites included the redwood- and live oak–covered hills in the San Francisco Bay Area, the scrub brush–crested dunes of Southern California deserts, the palm trees and lush flowers of the Hollywood Hills, the semitropical coastal vegetation of Santa Barbara, and the golden rolling hills of the Central Valley. In each of these sites, Wright used local building materials whenever feasible, in keeping with his emphasis on giving his architecture an organic quality, so that it seems to become a part of nature rather than trying to dominate it. These natural materials included pink Sonoma stone facing along exterior walls; polished redwood paneling in living rooms, dining rooms, and ceilings, as well as for framing doors and windows; stucco covering along exterior walls in Southern California; and yellow or red brick facing around entrances in Northern California.
Table of Contents
Chapter 1 A Prairie Among the Palms: The Stewart House, Santa Barbara County, 1909 15
Chapter 2 A Mayan Temple in Hollywood: The Barnsdall (Hollyhock) House, Los Angeles, 1917–21 25
Chapter 3 Pre-Columbian Monuments in Concrete: Four Southern California Houses,1923–25 35
Chapter 4 From the Coast to the Desert: Other Southern California Houses 59
Chapter 5 A Unique Usonian: The Buehler House, Orinda, California, 1948–49 85
Chapter 6 From Carmel to the Central Valley: Other Northern California Houses 97
Chapter 7 A Gift to These Golden Hills: The Marin County Civic Center, 1957–69 145
Chapter 8 From Commerce to Religion: Other Public Buildings in California 167
Chapter 9 North by Northwest: Houses in Oregon and Washington 189
Appendix: List of Frank Lloyd Wright’s West Coast Buildings Open to the Public 216