One of the great, eccentric 20th century architect Frank Lloyd Wright‘s firmly held theories was that a house should not be just a box plunked down on a piece of land, but that it should emerge from and be an essential part of the landscape. That the two — the land and the shelter — should be one.
This is the front facade of the Zimmerman House, the only Wright house open to the public in New England. As you can tell, the inside and the outside intermingle until they do, in fact, merge. The effect is even more striking from inside the house looking out over the back of the property. But no photography is allowed inside the house itself, so you’ll have to take my word for it.
It’s an extraordinary place to visit, whether or not you might want to live there. (It’s very small, and Wright designed EVERY SINGLE THING in it, furniture, decorations, the lot, none of which could be changed while he was alive.) Wright had an outsize ego, to say the least, but I’m bound to admit that he (like Picasso) was almost as great a genius as he thought he was. To visit here is to have altered your perceptions of house and home.
(The Zimmerman House is part of the collection of the Currier Museum of Art in Manchester, New Hampshire, a regional museum I’d never heard of, and was astonished by. Vaut le voyage, as French guidebooks say: well worth even a sizable detour! It was an unexpected bonus stop on our recent excursion to Portland and back.)
((And for yet another interpretation of merging, this time on the level of the sublime, see here on sister blog Touch2Touch.))