Dreamscapes Travel & Lifestyle Magazine - - Table Of Contents - BY KEVIN FRITZ

Florida South­ern Col­lege boasts the largest col­lec­tion of Frank Lloyd Wright ar­chi­tec­ture.

There is only one place on Earth where you can ex­pe­ri­ence the largest col­lec­tion of Frank Lloyd Wright ar­chi­tec­ture—the cam­pus of Florida South­ern Col­lege (FSC).

Founded in 1883, FSC boasts 2,500 un­der­grad­u­ates and is the old­est four-year pri­vate col­lege in Florida. Orig­i­nally es­tab­lished in Or­lando, the school moved mul­ti­ple times be­fore set­tling in Lake­land in 1922. Al­most 17 years later, Frank Lloyd Wright be­gan to con­struct his Aca­demic Vil­lage on the west side of cam­pus, des­ig­nated a Na­tional His­toric Land­mark in 2012. His plans com­prised 18 struc­tures; only 13 were even­tu­ally com­pleted.

True to his no­tions of cre­at­ing or­ganic ar­chi­tec­ture by blend­ing na­ture with his de­signs, he said the build­ings would “grow out of the ground, and into the light, a child of the sun.”

A visit to the Child of the Sun cam­pus, the time­less moniker given to the col­lec­tion of Wright’s de­signs at the school, im­merses you in the beauty of his work and ex­tra­or­di­nary vi­sion. Twelve Frank Lloyd Wright-de­signed struc­tures on cam­pus were built be­tween 1941 and 1959.

The Uso­nian house, also de­signed in the 1930s and orig­i­nally in­tended as fac­ulty hous­ing, was com­pleted in 2013. The build­ing is the cen­tre­piece of the Sharp Fam­ily Tourism and Ed­u­ca­tion Cen­ter.

Af­ter a stop at the Uso­nian house, take a self or guided tour of the 12 orig­i­nal struc­tures grac­ing the cam­pus:

• The Water Dome, Wright’s largest de­signed water fea­ture, mea­sures 48.8 me­tres in di­am­e­ter.

• Wat­son and Fine Build­ings (c. 1949) house

some of the school’s ad­min­is­tra­tion.

• The Thad Buck­ner Build­ing (orig­i­nally the

E.T. Roux Li­brary) was com­pleted in 1946. • The An­nie Pfeif­fer Chapel, ded­i­cated in 1941, was the first build­ing com­pleted. The metal grille (a mod­ern al­ter­na­tive to a steeple) atop its un­usual tower was later dubbed “the bi­cy­cle rack in the sky.” • The Dan­forth Chapel (c. 1955) con­tains Wright’s only stained-glass ex­am­ple in the col­lec­tion of build­ings.

• The Es­planades, a cop­per-trimmed cov­ered

walk­way, con­nects all of Wright’s build­ings. • The Polk County Science Build­ing was fin­ished in 1958.

• The Sem­i­nars, com­pleted in 1942, were orig­i­nally three sep­a­rate build­ings but were re­designed by Wright into one of­fice build­ing in 1958. • Ord­way Build­ing (orig­i­nally the In­dus­trial Arts Build­ing) is circa 1952. Its Theatre-in-the-round is the only one of its kind de­signed by Wright.

• The cam­pus ar­chi­tec­tural col­lec­tion also in­cludes the only Wright-de­signed Plan­e­tar­ium, com­pleted in 1958.

TOP: The Anne Pfeif­fer Chapel at the Florida South­ern Col­lege cam­pus. ABOVE: The Water Dome, Wright’s largest de­signed water fea­ture. cour­tesy FSC

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