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Doghouse design by Frank Lloyd Wright finds without end dwelling


On the age of 12, Jim Berger wrote a letter to Frank Lloyd Wright asking if the American architect, who had designed his household’s residence, in San Anselmo, California, would design a home for Eddie–his loyal Labrador Retriever. In his correspondence the younger boy offered specs for the architect to reference, together with the canine’s measurements—“two and half ft excessive and three ft lengthy.” In a word again to Berger, Wright wrote he was “too busy” and requested the kid to inquire once more “subsequent November;” he referred to as designing the canine-friendly construction “a possibility.”

The next yr, 1957, Wright adopted by on his promise and delivered a set of drawings–a plan, elevation and part—for the doghouse to the Berger household. The design for the 4-square-foot construction was rapidly sketched on the again of the envelope of Berger’s second letter—a typical observe of Wright’s. His assistants at Taliesin developed the working drawings, produced on massive sheets of drafting paper, precisely the identical course of used for large-scale initiatives. Wright charged no payment for the kennel design, regardless of Berger’s willingness to pay for the fee utilizing his paper route cash. Just like the Usonian-style residence the architect had been commissioned to design for the Berger’s, the doghouse is quintessentially Wright, that includes a triangular type with a protruding roofline.

doghouse with angular roof and text on exhibition in Marin County Civic Center
Doghouse on show on the Marin County Civic Heart (Courtesy Marin County)

In a word accompanying the drawings, the architect proposed the household use scrap Philippine mahogany and cedar from the primary home’s building to construct “Eddie’s Home.” Upon completion, Eddie most well-liked the primary residence over his private abode. The unique doghouse was discarded in 1970, however the Bergers held onto Wright’s drawings and used them in 2010 to rebuild the shelter, which is “the smallest construction Frank Lloyd Wright ever designed.”

Quick ahead to at this time, Jim Berger has donated the standard kennel to the County of Marin. It’s now part of the everlasting assortment on the Marin County Civic Heart in San Rafael, California, which is satirically the biggest Wright constructing nonetheless standing, and in addition his solely commissioned U.S. authorities constructing.

letter from Frank Lloyd Wright to Jim Berger
Frank Lloyd Wright’s letter to Jim Berger (Courtesy Marin County)

The wood kennel, a small patch of synthetic grass, canine bowl, and stuffed bone are on show entrance and heart within the Civic Heart’s cafeteria. Visitors are shielded from the replica by plexiglass fabricated from the Civic Heart’s authentic skylights—added to the constructing in 1959 by William Wesley Peters following Wright’s demise.

Frank Lloyd Wright drawings for doghouse
Frank Lloyd Wright’s drawings for “Eddie’s Home” (Courtesy Marin County)

In parallel with the newly put in exhibition the Division of Cultural Service is internet hosting a variety of applications. “Design Your Personal Animal Home” encourages kids to think about and sketch their very own animal-approved abode and the Civic Heart has reinstated its 90-minute constructing excursions–which had been paused for 2 years as a result of pandemic. Guests can once more expertise non-public areas of the general public facility, together with the balcony with sweeping views of the blue roof, entry the Supervisors Chamber, and uncover Wright’s customized furnishings designs constructed by inmates on the close by State Jail.



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