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From Wright Tour Guide to Wright Homeowner

By Lacey Sikora

Photo by Maksim Akelin

The Bertha and Sol Friedman House, the first Wright designed for his planned Usonia community in Pleasantville, New York, has found a new set of stewards. The new owners of the 1948 house, Jane and Brian Renz, are Frank Lloyd Wright Building Conservancy members and longtime fans of Wright’s work. Brian Renz notes that he grew up and attended graduate school in Chicago, so he always had an interest in…

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Wright in the Round: The Bertha and Sol Friedman House

By Lacey Sikora

Photo by Maksim Akelin

In 1945, a cooperative group from New York City purchased a 100-acre tract of land in Pleasantville, New York, and engaged Frank Lloyd Wright to build his Broadacre City concept, first published in 1932, on the land. Wright called the community Usonia, a descriptive term he used to embody the character of the American landscape that was free from previous architectural conventions. Wright created a plan for the community that…

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A Prairie Masterwork Seeks New Owners

By Lacey Sikora

Photo by VHT Studios

The Avery and Queene Coonley House in Riverside, Illinois, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright and built between 1908 and 1912, is considered one of the most elaborate Prairie School houses ever constructed. Sited on the banks of the Des Plaines River, the house is a part of an estate that originally consisted of the large main house, a separate coach house and a gardener’s cottage. After the Coonleys sold the…

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RE-EXAMINING RAVINE BLUFFS

By Karen Ettelson

Ravine Bluffs in Glencoe, Illinois, is Frank Lloyd Wright’s first built subdivision. Although the intent was to erect a Wright-designed house on each of the 25 lots in this small suburb north of Chicago, only five were actually constructed, in 1915. In the more than 100 years since, Wright scholars have largely dismissed the work in oft repeated narratives that these houses were small, low-cost rental units that were part…

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The ‘Profound Impact’ of the Pappas House

By Lacey Sikora

Photo by St. Louis Post-Dispatch

As a young married couple living in Wisconsin in the 1950s, Ted and Bette Pappas went to visit several Frank Lloyd Wright-designed houses. For Bette, it was love at first sight. Her daughter Charisse recalls, “It was like prairie fire for her. It finally got to the point where she said she couldn’t live in any house other than a Frank Lloyd Wright house.” Former Air Force bomber pilot Ted…

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