Thursday, November 10, 2016

Frank Lloyd Wright | Sleight of Hand

Cover | Frank Lloyd Wright and Mason City (2016)
Edgar Tafel, Ed., About Wright: An Album of Recollections by Those Who Knew Frank Lloyd Wright. New York: John Wiley, 1993, p. 69—

A building committee from a Lutheran church came to see [Frank Lloyd] Wright; they discussed a program and went away, being told to come back in two weeks. When the two weeks were about up, Gene [Masselink, his assistant] suggested to Wright they call off the visit to see the plans—they hadn't been started—at the last minute. Mr. Wright had the plans for an abandoned job, a small shopping center, brought out of the vault, and he change the titles of the areas; the bank became the sanctuary, the supermarket became the Fellowship Hall, the stores were entitled classrooms, and on and on. The Lutheran title was inscribed just as the Lutherans arrived, and Mr. Wright showed them the drawings, with accustomed gusto and aplomb. After he finished his talk, the pastor said: "Lord, we thank thee for leading us to a great architect, who has designed in your honor, an edifice we will use and enjoy. Amen." Heads were raised; the clients departed; end of story? The building never got built.