Frank Lloyd Wright – A Great Designer But He Sure Made Lots of Work for Engineers

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Not long ago, I met an interesting lady mulling over some used books for sale. We talked about the need for more people to read the classics in junior high and high school. She agreed even pondered if she might find “The Great Gatsby” amongst the heap of books being sold. She then noticed a book that she’d read once upon a time, and asked if I’d read it. Indeed, I had not but for $.50 I was not about to let that stop me as she had highly recommended it. Indeed, I did buy the book.

“Loving Frank” by Nancy Horan, Ballantine Books, New York, NY, 2007, 373 pages, ISBN: 978-0-345-49500-6.

Yes, Frank Lloyd Wright was a great man, a great designer, and said to have been one of the greatest architects of all time. His spectacular creative genius can be seen throughout his sketches, work, and ultimate homes and buildings. Still, as great of a designer as he was, he may have been many decades ahead of his time, as the materials of the day had troubles keeping up with his mental concepts, as he asked these structures to often defy gravity. But that didn’t stop Frank.

Indeed, they say that with brilliance comes baggage. And I suppose in the future with carbon nanotubes, graphene coatings, 3-D printed lattices, and chemical foam material science most if not ALL of Frank Lloyds Wright’s fantasies, dreams, visions, and designs will be feasible. Still, today we are left with, well, what we do have to work with.

In Housing Zone online news there was an interesting article titled; “12 lessons from a production home framing inspector – Structural engineer and expert framer Tim Garrison presents his assessment and recommendations from a recent framing inspection,” by Tim Garrison, published on February 19, 2013.

I guess my comments here are this; just because much of designs of folks like Frank Lloyd Wright might seem impossible, we must stretch the limits of our current materials, and continue to innovate with new material science so that ALL of these architectural wonders may one day come to fruition. They will, as long as we push these new areas of science forward to meet the dreams of the past. Meanwhile if you are considering house plans or drawing them up yourself – always remember that just because someone says it can’t be done today, doesn’t mean it will be impossible tomorrow. So dream big my fellow friend.

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