All three Taliesins were fantastic. I luckily was allowed to go thru the “public” rooms of the final house, the Living Room, etc., with the added bonus of being guided by Bruce Brooks Pfeiffer.
My friend’s ‘crazy’ Uncle Harry was with us, but he instead went up into the orchard and brought back a sackful of apples, and chided Mr. Pfeiffer for letting the ripe harvest go to waste.
An earlier visit during the weird, dark, and paranoid days of the Fellowship after Mr. Wright’s death, was remarkably different. We went unannounced, and found both Taliesin and Hillside completely deserted, especially Hillside and the Drafting Room and apprentice bedrooms, and the entire building was open; anyone could walk in and wander around. A friend who was with us, finally said: “Let’s get out of here, all of this is very creepy.”
Not so open tho, at Taliesin; the entry drive was blocked with razor wire fencing and 25?-gallon drums of surplus US Army poison gas. Remarkable.
Earlier visits with my parents when I was around ten years old, were much more civilized and bright. I remember realizing like a thunderbolt what organic architecture and design meant, and my life changed….what prompted this was a flower arrangement including fall leaves that was in the public restroom at Hillside.
The animation and recreation of thee 1911 Taliesin is stunning and wonderful. We were only able to see that simple, roughhewn masterpiece because of those wonderful photos discovered awhile back, and the photos Mr. Wright included in early publications.
Much thanks and praise to the FLW Foundation and Taliesin Preservation for what they are doing and have accomplished.
And two critical notes to those powers that be:
1. It seems to me that restoration work should have been limited to restoring the complex to the way it was when Mr. Wright died; that was the way he wanted it, so to speak, his final ideas on the building; and
2. The great oak (or maybe it was a maple) that was up in the “tea circle” and which came down in a big storm several yeas ago, MUST be replaced with the largest matching specimen tree that can be found and installed successfully. This is SO important because all of the Taliesins, especially the original building, were built AROUND that tree as an anchor to the hillside; it can be plainly seen in the 1911 animation as the much smaller and younger tree it was then.
And thank you for this opportunity.