Buffalo, N.Y. - Frank Lloyd Wright's Darwin D. Martin House is now an invited member of the prestigious organization known as Iconic Houses-an international network connecting the most architecturally significant houses from the 20th century that are open to the public as house museums.
Iconic Houses brings together professionals and sites from all corners of the world in order to focus attention on the importance of modern residential architecture. It also provides a platform for the discussion of best practices in the areas of conservation, management, and policy, in addition to encouraging new partnerships.
One of Iconic House's most important goals is in its information sharing efforts. Launched in November 2012, the organization's website, www.iconichouses.org, serves as a unique resource for global travelers lured by architecture, art, and culture. The online site lists over 150 landmark houses, including the Darwin D. Martin House.
"Being part of the network means an important recognition and a significant step in the international dissemination of Wright's Prairie House period," said Mary Roberts, executive director at the Martin House Restoration Corporation.
By linking travel and 20th century houses, the Iconic Houses network aims to increase visitor numbers and raise awareness of the challenges of keeping these treasures alive in times of scarce funding, understaffing and in some cases, the threat of demolition.
The 4th International Iconic Houses Conference is being held this week at the Getty Center in Los Angeles. The conference will focus on Modern residential architecture's importance, its preservation, and its future. Keynote speaker, Architect Toshiko Mori, will discuss her work in relation to three houses that were designed by modern masters - Frank Lloyd Wright, Paul Rudolph and Marcel Breuer in her talk "Frank, Paul, Marcel and Me." Ms. Mori designed the acclaimed Eleanor and Wilson Greatbatch Pavilion, which serves as the visitor center at the Martin House Complex.
ABOUT THE MARTIN HOUSE COMPLEX
The Martin House Complex, designed and built from 1903-05, is considered by Wright scholars to be a significant turning point in the evolution of the Prairie house concept. The original complex consisted of the main Martin House, pergola, conservatory and carriage house, the Barton House and a gardener's cottage, totaling nearly 32,000 square feet. Wright called the Martin House his "opus," and had its plan tacked above his drafting board for decades. Reconstruction of the pergola, conservatory and carriage house was completed in early 2007 in the most ambitious restoration of demolished Wright buildings ever undertaken.
The Martin House Restoration Corporation is a New York not-for-profit corporation founded in 1992. It has a 30-member board of directors and approximately 400 active volunteers. More information about this National Historic Landmark and NYS Historic Site, including tour information, can be found at http://www.darwinmartinhouse.org/.
Major support for the Martin House restoration effort has been generously provided by New York State, the County of Erie, the City of Buffalo, The John R. Oishei Foundation, The Margaret L. Wendt Foundation, The East Hill Foundation and numerous other federal agencies, foundations, corporate and individual sponsors.
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Contact: Mary F. Roberts, Executive Director
Martin House Restoration Corporation