The Architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright

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Princeton University Press, 1996 - Architecture - 524 pages
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Although a founding figure of modern architecture as well as its most celebrated and prolific practitioner, Frank Lloyd Wright has always remained elusively outside the mainstream. In this book, the architectural historian Neil Levine redefines our understanding of Wright in the first comprehensive and in-depth analysis of the architect's entire career since the opening of the Wright Archives. Making use of the architect's drawings, notes, writings, and personal and professional correspondence, the author weaves together historical and biographical material in a carefully documented, chronologically ordered framework that gives new meaning and relevance to Wright's enormously varied production. The main theme of Wright's work is the intimate relation between architecture and nature, as revealed through the processes of abstraction and representation. The power of its hold on us lies in the various ways Wright developed this idea for the suburb, the city, and the country, for environments as different as the American Midwest or Southwest and Baghdad, and for programs ranging from the single-family house and the suburban church to the museum and the civic center. Levine conveys the significance of the continuities and changes that he sees in Wright's architecture and thought by adopting a case-study method that focuses successive chapters on the architect's most important designs. The origins of the revolutionary Prairie House are traced to the Winslow House, its full manifestation being seen in the later Robie House. Taliesin, the Imperial Hotel, Hollyhock House, the textile-block houses and projects, Fallingwater, and Taliesin West are each given special attention. Discussions of theGuggenheim Museum, the proposed Baghdad Opera House, and the Marin County Civic Center show how Wright's later work, contrary to received opinion, opened up important new areas of investigation into the language of architectural expression. Levine's analysis of the representational imagery and narrative structure of Wright's buildings situates the architect's work in the general context of modern thought and gives this book a unique place in the writings on Wright.

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The architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright

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This book is a monumental project aimed at describing, explaining, and evaluating Frank Lloyd Wright's life and work. Wright was both an architect and writer, and Levine (fine arts, Harvard Univ.) has ... Read full review

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About the author (1996)

Neil Levine teaches the history of modern architecture at Harvard University, where he is the Emmet Blakeney Gleason Professor of Fine Arts. He has been the Banister Fletcher Professor of Architecture at the University of London and the Slade Professor of Fine Art at Cambridge University. He is on the editorial board of the journal Wright Studies and was on the advisory board of an upcoming PBS documentary series on Wright. He is also on the Board of Directors of the Frank Lloyd Wright Building Conservancy.

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