Thursday, April 5, 2012

frank lloyd wright

I watched two fascinating films on Frank Lloyd Wright, a documentary by Ken Burns and a two-part interview series by Mike Wallace. The documentary was an interesting look at Wright's life, loves, and work, with lots of scandal and drama. What amazed me the most was the sheer volume of work he was able to achieve in his lifetime, I don't think there's been an architect that has been as prolific but whose quantity of work has been equally matched by its quality.
The part on Fallingwater was pretty mind-blowing. The building is so perfectly and artfully integrated with its setting. There is something spiritual in the space where the architecture becomes an extension of the nature that surrounds it.
Wright is a genius, and you can tell from the Wallace interviews that he is most definitely aware of his own self-importance. The interviews take place toward the end of Wright's career and life, as he is working on his final project (The Guggenheim). There is some funny banter between a young Wallace (whose obsessive need to constantly smoke a cigarette is almost equally as entertaining) and pompous Wright, who pretty much hates on everyone from Dali to Elvis, and gives enough weird, vague answers to frustrate and amuse Wallace.