Thursday, December 04, 2008

frank was here

Frank Lloyd Wright's Christian Community Church

I wasn’t happy with the shots I took of Frank Lloyd Wright’s Community Christian Church in Kansas City back in October, mostly because they turned out true -- they captured the fake ferns that adorn the pure geometry that Wright limned for the preacher’s pulpit, the framed church fathers hanging on the rough aggregate concrete walls, the severe angles of the balcony that were difficult to maneuver.

I believe this little Church, which its compressed lower corridors and vast open sanctuary, is one that Wright only ever saw on paper, and I wonder if he would have been happy with its rough execution; with the clutter along its passageways.

The space felt like a grand old house forgotten: As if a rich childless couple had commissioned it and lived quietly within its rooms, making small gestures and speaking in hushed voices, until they passed on and their home was subdivided into a multiplicity of rental units, teaming with the chaos of lives lived and babies birthed and children playing, their shouts echoing off the walls.

Good things, all -- but curiously out of context in this place where they should have been entirely at home.

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