28 March 2014

a little Prairie, a little Palladio

I "met" a new architect when I was identifying the pictures I took in Oak Park, Illinois, when I was out there in February for the College Art Association conference: Eben Ezra Roberts (1866-1943). I enjoyed this house, which is two doors down from the Frank Lloyd Wright Home and Studio, for the mix of Prairie style elements and Palladian (Serlian) window. This was the second house that Roberts designed for Andrew Jackson Redmond, in 1900. Roberts did a couple hundred houses in Oak Park, working at the same time as Wright. While I was perusing Frank Lloyd Wright and Prairie School architecture in Oak Park by Paul Sprague (2nd edition, 1978) for information on the photographed houses, I happened on another house that Roberts designed: H. Benton Howard House, 1903-1904, on Chicago Avenue. It looks to me more like Voysey than Wright though Sprague says it shows that Roberts was familiar with the work of Wright. Whatever, I wish I'd had the guide in hand as I meandered the streets of Oak Park with a tour group consisting mostly of CAA folks.

This the Howard house, with an image from prairiestyles.com:

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