Scenic USA - Arizona

Taliesin West

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Taliesin West - Scottsdale, Arizona

Photos by Donna Langley

   Built among the foothills of the McDowell Mountains on the outskirts of Scottsdale, Frank Lloyd Wright found the perfect place to blend indoor and outdoor living spaces. Taliesin West Sculpture Applauded for this remarkable achievement in architecture, Taliesin West (Tal-ee-ESS-in) began as the Wright's winter home and school. Today the sprawling 600 acre complex also houses the main campus of the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture.
   Initial construction began in 1937, utilizing local stone materials, natural lighting, redwood and canvas. Subsequent alterations and additions were constructed by resident students. Overlooking the desert valley below, Wright masterfully linked his home, office, the cabaret theater and music pavilion with dramatic garden spaces, terraces and walkways. A must see in Scottsdale, tours vary from a one hour brief of Taliesin West complex highlights, to in-depth, intimate views of the Taliesin West Complex. One of the extended tours stops at the dining room, offering guests a mid-morning tea and a chance to chat with Wright associates. A guided nature tour introduces visitors to the rugged Sonoran Desert, its fragile ecosystem and a chance to view some of the area's wildlife.
   Wright, born in 1867, was often viewed as a revolutionary and nonconformist. He despised the architectural styles of his day, and looked to create site-specific designs. While gaining fame in Europe, Wright's career was never fully appreciated in America until late in his life.

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