Aspects of Creative Work: Fallingwater by Frank Lloyd Wright

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Aspects of creative work:
Fallingwater by Frank Lloyd Wright

A creative work is a manifestation of creative effort such as artwork, literature, music, paintings, and software. Creative works have in common a degree of arbitrariness, such that it is improbable that two people would independently create the same work. Creative works are part of property rights. A creative work depends on how you look at that particular art. Every art or craft is not creative for us or for everyone. When we say something is creative we always have some reference. If one says a building is creative we always compare it with all principles of design whether it is in harmony or contrast with the surroundings or if it is balanced or the whole building is in unity or not. I have tried to understand aspects of creative work by studying Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater. In 1933, Kaufmann’s asked Frank Lloyd Wright to design a new weekend house in Bear Run, a stream which flows at 1298 feet above sea level and then breaks to fall about 20 feet. Kaufmann’s needed a year round weekend house, with all modern conveniences, away from the highway and closer to the waterfalls. Instead of designing a house which overlooks waterfalls, Wright designed a house on the waterfalls. Wright says,” I think you can hear the waterfall when you look at the design.1 When Wright first drew sketch of the house he imagined a house with series of terraces or ledged which would appear to be mere extension to the cliff. These reinforced 1

Wright, in a conversation with Hugh Downs at Taliesin, copyright 1953 by the National Broadcasting Company.

Aspects of creative work: Theory of Conservation Submitted by: Manasi Pundlik, Code: AC-0212

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concrete cantilevered terraces were anchored to the rock and thus it was placed between the rocky outcrop and the stream, parallel to an old wooden bridge. The house was conceived as a living space projecting above the falls and into the forest, similar to the ledges of rock along the cliffs, and beneath the stream.2

Initial sketches of the house


Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater, the house and its history, copyright 1993 by Dover Publications, Inc.

Aspects of creative work: Theory of Conservation Submitted by: Manasi Pundlik, Code: AC-0212

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First floor plan

Second floor Plan
Aspects of creative work: Theory of Conservation Submitted by: Manasi Pundlik, Code: AC-0212 Page 3

Third floor plan There were four boulders on northern side of the stream, Wright placed living room floor above one of the boulder. Spaces inside the house were framed by five nearly equal bays. West bay defined the kitchen and two bed rooms above. Two middle bays after that formed the central space of the living room. Mrs. Kauffmann’s room was on first floor and a long gallery at the third level was provided above the living room in the middle bay. The Fourth bay or east bay defined sky lighted study area, principle entrance and stairs, while guest room was built over the eastern bay above the main entry and staircase. The fifth and the last bay encompassed the east living room terrace and the entrance loggia.

South Elevation
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West Elevation The terrace besides the west living was cantilevered past the line of the west kitchen wall and thus the monotonous and simplistic expression of the bay module was avoided, enhancing the drama of cantilever. On the ground floor a pool kind of space was created this can be accessed by floating staircase. The pool was constructed as per clients wish, it could have been constructed anywhere, but Wright placed it in such a way that as if it is part of the stream. Floating staircase adds to the feeling of one big flowing space from where you cannot separate nature from the building. The cantilevers in the house already appeared everywhere at Bear Run, not just in the rock ledges,...
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