PaperCity Magazine

December 2018- Houston

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the glass-making process, as well as coal, to enliven many of his buildings' walls, a striking characteristic from the Bavinger House, in Norman, of the previous decade. Mr. Goff, I presume. From 1977 to 1980, I was the producer/director and on-air host of an environmental-issues radio program at the Pacifica network station in Houston. Every spring, I dedicated the month of April to the built environment. For 1979, I decided to focus entirely on architecture and was contemplating what subjects I might incorporate. While researching the archives of KPFA, the original Pacifica station in Berkeley, I found an excellent program on Frank Lloyd Wright. After listening to the program several times, I decided to use most of it and add some original material to create a month-long broadcast in serial form on the life and work of Mr. Wright. At this time, I was working in the office of Houston architect Howard Barnstone and met Stephen Fox, an architectural historian who was helping Howard with his book about Houston architect John Staub. During an informal talk with Stephen, I mentioned my idea of a radio broadcast program about Frank Lloyd Wright and that I was thinking of adding some material on Bruce Goff, a lifelong friend of Mr. Wright. He said Mr. Goff now lived in Tyler, Texas, and gave me his phone number. Soon after talking with Stephen, I called Mr. Goff. Surprisingly, he answered with a warm and delightful "Hello." During our conversation, I explained my idea for a radio broadcast about his friend, Frank Lloyd Wright, and he did not hesitate to offer his help. We made plans to spend the 1979 Easter weekend at his studio in Tyler and see where the time took us. Although I was familiar with some of his work as a result of my architectural courses at Texas Tech University and architectural books that referenced him (usually in relation to Mr. Wright), I really had no idea of his persona. That was about to change in a major way when I arrived at his house and studio on the Saturday morning before Easter. Tyler, Texas, is not a big town. So, armed with a street map, it was not difficult to navigate a path to his house, which was in the middle of town in an upper-middle- class residential neighborhood. Most of the homes were somewhat modest one-story ranch-style houses, so not knowing what his looked like, I drove right past it. I stopped and double-checked the street address and drove back to a nice but undistinguished stone-veneer house and parked at the curb. Knowing some of his work, I am not sure 49 Bruce Goff's only Houston commission still stands: Durst-Gee House, 1958, addition 1978-1981. Bavinger House, Norman, Oklahoma, 1950-1955, no longer extant First-floor master bedroom of the Durst-Gee House faces a signature Goff window. Gone but not forgotten: Joe Price House, Shin'en Kan, Bartlesville, Oklahoma, 1956.

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