Motif SAMARA Education Series
FRANK LLOYD WRIGHT
Building on a Unit
SPRING 1999


Ted Osborn

Building on a Unit

Overview

Detailed Aspects

Nature and Philosophy

The Living Environment

Different Perspectives

Relevance to SAMARA
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Overview

"To think is to deal in simples." Louis Sullivan, 1893

Frank Lloyd Wright's desire to provide low cost housing for the typical American family was realized, in part, by simplifying construction. One of his basic solutions involved the use of the unit system of construction, manifested through a geometric grid. The grid provided order for the plan and created precise, rigid lines for construction.

America's middle class was the target for this great experiment called Usonia. While the unit concept was evident in the larger, more lavish commissions of the Prairie period, Wright needed a way to scale things down. To simplify; to provide the client with a natural, organic simplicity and elegance. Simple, but not plain. Moreover, he needed a way to present the Usonian concepts to his clients who would find it easier to digest if the entire design and plan for living were reduced to a sheet of simple graph paper.

In my study, I will take a closer look at the detailed aspects of the grid system, its relationship to Nature and Wright's Philosophy, aspects of the living environment, different perspectives of other sites and the relevance to SAMARA.


Building on a Unit
Overview | Detailed Aspects | Nature and Philosophy | The Living Environment
Different Perspectives | Relevance to SAMARA

Overviews of Construction Innovations
[ Nature of Materials ]   [ Building on a Unit ]   [ The Owner's View ]   [ Building the Wright Way ]
[ Historic Perspectives ]   [ Manipulating the Space ]   [ Oriental Influence ]


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The John Christian Family Memorial Trust, Inc.
This page was created June 1, 1999
Revision August 10, 1999
Latest Revision January 12, 2007