Thursday, December 27, 2012

Material Process Product - Franz Kline

Franz Kline: Coal and Steel

I recently viewed the Franz Kline exhibit at the Allentown Art Museum and had the priviledge of listening to the curator and friend Robert Mattison speak of the work. I first became interested in Kline's work when I moved to Wilkes-Barre to work for Peter Bohlin. My house was located just three blocks away from Kline's childhood home on River Street where a historic marker announces his contribution to the Abstract Expressionist movement.

Franz Kline "The Ballantine" Courtesy of Franz Kline Estate
Kline's work was deeply influenced by his native coal mining region of Northeastern Pennsylvania. This stark anthracite region inspired Kline's most famous work, the black and white abstractions of the 1950's. The paintings consist of layers of white and black paint, vigorous brushwork and angular substructures -silhouettes of the massive mechanical forms that dot the Pennsylvania landscape. 
Huber Breaker #4 Ashley Pennsylvania Image Courtesy of Michael Mirabito
You can see how the bold lines and confident brush strokes are reminiscent of Pennsylvania's coal breakers. These great machines used in the mining industry are something you will read about in a future blog and deeply influence the architecture I produce.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

SFA News - Peace + Joy

Spillman Farmer thanks all of you for a great 2012 and wishes you the best for 2013.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Living in the Brownfield - 100 years of Ray Eames

December 15th is the centennial of the birth of Ray Eames. We wanted to acknowledge her contribution to the design world and offer you a chance to look back at an interesting and often overlooked detail of the eames house described in her own words.

“Then there are the reflections; windows that reflect back abstract patterns of eucalyptus bark, superimposing them on the human textures within. Elsewhere you see the meadow through windows, through the house, through interior plants, all at once. There is a
detail over the back patio – a black-and-white photograph of these same trees screened onto a textile, then mounted on a panel and screwed to the building. Just before twilight, when shadows still fall on the image and the natural light turns the reflections on the leaves monochromatic, it becomes almost impossible to tell where the building ends and the reflections begin. One truly believes Ray when she remarked “after 13 years of living in it,
the building for me ceased to exist a long time ago.”

excerpt from "The Eames Primer" by Eames Demetrios.

To learn more about this detail please refer to our earlier blog post:

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

SFA News - DVGBC Lehigh Valley

Congratulations to Erin McGuinness who was elected to the Steering Committee of the Lehigh Valley Branch of the DVGBC as Emerging Professionals Chair. Elections were held last Thursday evening. Erin will be sharing those duties with Casey Noble of Liberty Property Trust. Best of luck to both of them!
The above image depicts the rain garden at Bryn Athyn College, which assists with runoff management for the LEED Gold Certified Doering Center for Science and Research. Congrats again Erin!

Monday, December 10, 2012

SFA News - Interiors and Sources

We are very proud to have The ArtsQuest Center featured in INTERIORS AND SOURCES Magazine. The project was among Editor's Adam Moore's favorites for 2012, we have reproduced their web article here and look forward to seeing it in print.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Living in the Brownfield - Oscar Niemeyer

Yesterday Oscar Niemeyer died at the age of 104. We'd like to acknowledge the joy and craft that he brought to the world with his work.  In 1999, I had the opportunity to spend two incredible days wandering through the city of Brasilia, a new city master planned by Lucio Costa and brought to life with major buildings designed by Oscar Niemeyer. 

An incredible place... go,see, and learn. Seeing is believing in this case.

The images above are scans of film that I had on my desk from that visit...two days I’ll never forget, rest in peace.