Hertzberg Reviews Saving Wright

Mark Hertzberg reviews Saving Wright: The Freeman House and the Preservation of Meaning, Materials, and Modernity on his site Wright in Racine.

The Freeman house, owned today by the University of Southern California, was designed by Wright in 1924 in a dramatic (and problematic) location in the Hollywood Hills. The original clients lived in the house until their deaths in the 1980s.

From the Amazon description:
>This book is a case study on the preservation of an important work of modern architecture. The story of the Freeman House, and of the attempt to save it, entails almost all of the provocative issues that make historic preservation as a field so fascinating, technologically and theoretically complex, and politically charged.

>Saving Wright chronicles the ongoing struggle to save Wright’s Freeman House in the Hollywood Hills, the setting for fascinating people and events but deeply flawed from the time it was built ninety-five years ago. The Freeman House was an experiment born out of Frank Lloyd Wright’s polemical vision of a new kind of architecture for the middle class, for modern America, and, in particular, for the Los Angeles foothills. Its design and construction were difficult, thus, along with many poor decisions, planting within a beautiful work of architecture the seeds of its own destruction.