Saturday, September 24, 2011

Design 1 Field Trip: Florida Southern College

Today was our first field trip in the architecture program. We visited Florida Southern College in Lakeland, which if you don't know, is the largest Frank Lloyd Wright collection in the world, right in our own backyard. We arrived at 9, took a tour of the buildings, then were given an assignment to use the tools we've been learning about (such as axonometric drawings and such) to diagram and study atleast 2 buildings on site. What a great place to visit! I, along with all of my other classmates, had a very enjoyable time. Here are some pictures posted below that I took....


Administrator Bldg.


Feiffer Chapel

Stairwell of planetarium bldg.

Interior Stairs of Feiffer Chapel. LOVE this.

Feiffer Chapel

Feiffer Chapel, looking up from pews

Forth Chapel

Forth Chapel, glass window detail

original Library

There are lots of very interesting and not so subtle things that were learned about these great works of architecture. All of the angles involved in these buildings are either 30, 60, or 90 degrees. Frank goes as far as to even angle stairs, walkways, and overhead conditions (sometimes towards you, making you feel very cautious)Wright's play with scale is impressive, to say the least. Most of the time walking around under the walkways and through the buildings you almost feel the need to be careful to not hit the ceiling or run into any sharps column creations, but there are points (like in the library and Feiffer Chapel) where the room opens up to a very large scale. I find it very warming in that it makes me feel much more in tune with the building and where I am in it. Frank puts a few hints of his previous influences in the Science building, where some of the overhead details highly resemble some Japanese architecture, which Frank Lloyd Wright had been influenced by in most of his architectural career. I found it VERY interesting to learn that many of the building were built with student labor, mostly female, because the buildings were constructed during World War II. Overall, it was a significant learning experience. As soon as I parked my car and got out, it kind of hit me that I was actually visiting a significant historical architectural piece of work. The buildings were, for the most part, beautiful. Apparently, Wright wasn't too aware of the Florida climate, so all of the buildings have terrible water leakage problems and have to be maintenced quite often. There are many places where large cracks have formed in the concrete, water drips from almost anywhere, cracks in the ground are appearing, glass tiles have fallen out of walls (you can literally feel small blasts of AC as you walk outside the building because of how poorly the walls are constructed for our climate). always, I leave you with some journal sketches and my first attempt at a panoramic...

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