Personal tools
log in | join | help
Sections

Book Review: Frank Lloyd Wright, Art Collector

by LiveModern Webmaster last modified Mar 26, 2012 01:04 AM
Editorial Rating: 1 2 3 4 5
Average Rating: 1 2 3 4 5 ( 0 votes)
by Eric last modified Mar 25, 2012

Anyone with more than a passing familiarity with Frank Lloyd Wright knows that he was an avid collector of Japanese woodblock prints—counting them as one of the few influences on his work (that he actually admitted to). But until I read Dr. Anthony Alofsin's newest book, Frank Lloyd Wright, Art Collector published by the University of Texas Press, I had no idea that he also collected several turn-of-the-last-century Secessionist woodblock prints that reveal another important...




 

 

Picture 1Anyone with more than a passing familiarity with Frank Lloyd Wright knows that he was an avid collector of Japanese woodblock prints—counting them as one of the few influences on his work (that he actually admitted to). But until I read Dr. Anthony Alofsin's newest book, Frank Lloyd Wright, Art Collector published by the University of Texas Press, I had no idea that he also collected several turn-of-the-last-century Secessionist woodblock prints that reveal another important influence. Read more after the jump...

Discovered within the vast archive of Wright's work at Taliesin West were a previously unknown group of thirty-two Secessionist art prints, which were purchased during the infamous 1909-1910 European trip Wright took with Mamah Borthwick Cheney. While similar in theme to the Japanese prints Wright so obsessively collected, these German and Austrian prints reveal a new facet to Wright's artistic tastes that have until now been unexplored.

Picture 3

Alofsin, whose previous books helped flesh-out and give clarity to the fuzzy years surrounding the transitional era post-Prairie and pre-Usonian, uses this specific cache of artworks to impart the impact that the Secessionists (more so than the other avant garde European movements like cubism, futurism, etc.) had on shaping the Architect's ideas. The essay accompanying the catalog of prints perfectly encapsulates the significance of these prints in rich, scholarly, yet approachable detail by Alofsin in the first ever publication of these works of art.

Picture 2

Each of the prints is pictured in large, colorful, and detailed photographs, accompanied by Alofsin's impeccable scholarly descriptions. This context connects the artists (both famous and little-known) to Wright and highlight their common desire to break from traditions and embrace the power and beauty of the natural world through their own unique expressions of Modernism.

  Picture 5

Picture 4

As with any of Dr. Alofsin's books, I highly recommend this one in helping to understand and appreciate the complex individual that is Frank Lloyd Wright and how the world around him shaped his life and work. Get your copy here.

All images via utexas.edu



 

 

 
 
 

Website migration, maintenance and customization provided by Grafware.