Stay in touch for updates on publishing date, SUMMER 2020
Building a Dream by hand with the World's Greatest Architect
9" x 9", hardbound
Over 500 photos and drawings
Don and Virginia Lovness went to see Frank Lloyd Wright in 1955 at Taliesin, where he agreed to design a home / art studio for the young couple. The following spring they began a two-year marathon of chiseling and laying stone, pouring cement and framing their Usonian gem on a small lake in Minnesota. They lived in a tiny camping trailer on site with their two daughters, a cat and a goat.
An update of the Seth Peterson cottage in Wisconsin, Don and Virginia built this second Wright design by themselves in 1972.
Don and Virginia became very close to Mrs. Wright, Wes Peters and the entire Fellowship, and their home became a regular "R&R" stop for Taliesin apprentices. They were influenced by Wright in many ways and became avid collectors of Oriental art. Don re-created some of the "Sprite" designs from the long-gone Midway Gardens, sparking a resurgence of interest in these lovely figurines.
With no building experience, in April, 1956 the young couple began by laying tons of stone for the central hearth. Over two years they completed the house.
My mother would lay stone during the day and rake the joints in the evening, working until dark. My sister and I spent the summers collecting pebbles for fill as the house rose around us.
When the house was finished in the late fall of 1957, my sister and I had a bedroom to share. My father - a chemist, aviator, boxer and consummate builder - was a renaissance man with a soft side.
Our parents made regular visits to Spring Green where we would take part in the elaborate pageants put on by the Fellowship and apprentices.
The Cottage took almost 3 years to build by hand, using salvaged lumber and stone. It became their main home and saw a constant stream of visitors over the years.
Wes Peters was a close friend and when he married Svetlana Alliluyeva (Stalin's daughter) my parents became close confidants to her while she lived at Taliesin.