Taliesan West, a Frank Lloyd Wright home and school

We visited a Frank Lloyd Wright compound and Architect School that is just east of Phoenix. It’s called Taliesan West (there’s a Taliesan East in Wisconsin). This is where Frank Lloyd Wright lived for several years at the end of his life, and he always had a few graduate students living and working at the site. While the Wrights had a section of the compound for their apartment, the students lived out in the desert in tents. This, Mr. Wright felt, would bring them closer to nature and get them to understand and love the shapes and dimensions of nature to use in their architectural work.

The compound was also build by the students, by hand. THey scoured the desert for rocks, and then built all the walls out of concrete with the large and small rocks placed within the walls. The walls, windows, rooflines all are at a 15% slant. A chef also lived on the property to prepare all the food.

During his life he also felt that the ‘whole student’ should be educated, not just one facet. There were Saturday parties where the students, who lived in tents in the desert, were expected to dress in tuxedos and socialize with local people invited out for the evening, listen to concerts, play social games (bridge etc) and behave as gentlemen. The students were all male by the way.

The property itself is very unique and pleasing to the eye. We really enjoyed our visit.

Here are some pictures: