October 18, 2008

Tarantino X Frank Lloyd Wright Mashup, Of Sorts


It's a small New Jerseymodern design world after all. Did you know that architects Lawrence and Sharon Tarantino, whose EVA Foam kids furniture [above] is produced by Offi, are experts in renovating and modernizing Frank Lloyd Wright's postwar buildings? And that they were recently given a Cultural and Heritage Commission Preservation Award by the American Institute of Architects for their innovative approach to renovating their own 1954 Usonian house in New Jersey after it had been flooded for the third time in its history? [think: modular kitchens.]


From the New York Times' report, I gather the award was presented by a complete idiot without two nickels' worth of awareness of quality mid-century modern residential architecture. I was going to give him the benefit of the doubt that he knew who Frank Lloyd Wright was, but after reading the article again, I'm really not so sure:

"POSTWAR style is something that does not resonate with the general public, or with us...We were schooled that if you're not innovating, you're wasting your time, so most architects try to deviate from the norms of the period when they grew up."


"I think it was probably that a story of a long-term preservation effort grabbed people, not a particular style," said [AIA New Jersey Design Conference chair Steven J.] Carlidge, who said he had not been a contest juror and allowed that in his view, post-World War II architecture seemed to work a "pervasive malaise" on the landscape.

Unbelievable. In The Region | Honors for Restored Wright House [nyt]
Tarantino Studio [tarantinostudio.com]


Are you kidding me? This style is exactly the type of house that resonates with me. We've spent the last five months searching for mid-century modern homes in Denver. Most of my architecture friends would give their left leg for the opportunity to live in or renovate a home like this.

Yeah, it doesn't resonate with me so much as...DOMINATE me. Need that home NOW.

I'm speechless. Whether you appreciate this form of architecture or not, I don't understand how you cannot know about FLW. Oh, what has our educational system come to?

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