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    Description

    Frank Lloyd Wright (American, 1867-1959)
    Presentation drawings of the Kalita Humphreys Theater, Dallas, Texas with annotations by Frank Lloyd Wright (two works), 1954
    Ink and graphite on tracing paper
    17-7/8 x 36 inches (45.3 x 91.4 cm) (sheet, largest)

    PROVENANCE:
    Property from the Collection of the Architect W. Kelly Oliver

    The Kalita Humphreys Theater was commissioned in 1954 by the Dallas Theater Center and completed in 1959. It would become Dallas's first repertory theater, as well as the first and only theater design of Frank Lloyd Wright's to be constructed throughout his career. In his youth, Wright had wanted to be an actor. Although his life followed a different path, his love for the dramatic arts never ceased, and constructing a theater was the one undertaking he wanted to accomplish in his lifetime. The Kalita Humphreys Theater typifies Wright's later work, conveying organic fluidity by eliminating right angles. Instead of designing the structure along a square grid, as may be expected, it was planned along a diamond grid, which results in an abstracted version of the long, stretched profiles for which he became famous. The use of concentric circles and ramps throughout recall his design for the Guggenheim Museum, also completed in 1959. Along the ceiling, these circles house the lighting and draw the eye from the perimeter of the space to the focal point - the revolving stage. While Wright's drawing practice would often include figures interacting with the space, these drawings exhibit his lifelong fascination with the theater, with a rare glimpse at his imagined mis-en-scène, demonstrating his regard for Japanese theatrical traditions. The costuming, blocking, and set design depicted expose an unexpected mastery of stagecraft in addition to his other known talents. This is an intimate, avant garde space and although Wright did not live long enough to see it completed, it persists as a Dallas landmark and a testament to his passion.

    These drawings come from the archive




    Condition Report*: Pinholes to the corners; very mild time staining to the extreme edges; moderate handling creases through out each sheet; mild to moderate folding creases; loss to the upper edge of the far right tree; three small losses near the upper left quadrant. Each sheet is loose and unframed.
    *Heritage Auctions strives to provide as much information as possible but encourages in-person inspection by bidders. Statements regarding the condition of objects are only for general guidance and should not be relied upon as complete statements of fact, and do not constitute a representation, warranty or assumption of liability by Heritage. Some condition issues may not be noted in the condition report but are apparent in the provided photos which are considered part of the condition report. Please note that we do not de-frame lots estimated at $1,000 or less and may not be able to provide additional details for lots valued under $500. All lots are sold "AS IS" under the Terms & Conditions of Auction.

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    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    April, 2019
    15th Monday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 9
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