oak park
oak park
critical response
parallel movements
wright at the time
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oak park: response

oak park

The House Beautiful, February 1897
“Successful Houses. III.”

he house outside is of no particular character, being built at different times, but it has attained a very comfortable and livable appearance. It is so practically buried in trees and foliage that all its defects are softened and concealed, and the whole place has the effect of a well-balanced picture. The relation of the foliage to the interior has been considered; in fact, the arrangement of the windows is purposely such as to cause the rooms to depend largely on the trees outside for part of, their charm.

This last is worthy of considerable consideration by owners of country houses, as many in their pursuit of good pictures and furniture seem to overlook the decorative elements right at hand. In this house, however, the greatest care has been used by the architect-owner, and almost every piece of furniture has been designed by him, and placed where it appears to the best effect. The outcome is that there is all through that impression of one thing leading up to another, but still not having in the least a studied appearance. There is no discordant note to break the restful feeling, induced by the interior...

The governing idea of all this is one of the strongest theories of the whole house. It cannot be questioned but that children brought up in a room like this, with its simple beauty and strength as a daily fact, will little by little feel its influence and come to regard it as only natural that all rooms should be as this one is. It is to be expected then, that a beautiful taste and instinct will be firmly established by such surroundings, instead of others cheap and trivial; and the child should grow up with a perfect recognition of what is good and what is bad in the art of the house. Had more of the present generation been started under similar circumstances the effect might be most apparent.

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