University Art Gallery

PAUL RUDOLPH: The Florida Houses

February 3 - March 24, 2006

Curated by Christopher Domin and Joseph King Photographs by Ezra Stoller


Paul Rudolph (1918-97) was the master architect for the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth campus, which was planned and begun in the mid 1960's. Shortly before designing the Dartmouth campus, Rudolph - who was dean of the Architecture School at Yale - had become internationally famous for his design of the Yale Art and Architecture Building.

The exhibition focuses on the important earlier Florida work that Paul Rudolph did over a twenty years period. Paul Rudolph arrived in Sarasota in 1941 and immediately began to develop his own distinctive regionally based modernism. First in collaboration with the architect Ralph Twitchell, and later on his own.

In the curators' words: "Rudolph successfully, sometimes controversially, transformed the southern Florida landscape. With their distinctive natural landscape, local architectural precedents, and innovative construction techniques - many based on simple off-the-shelf materials - these houses brought modern architectural form into this gracious subtropical world"

"The early residential work...provided the necessary testing ground for Rudolph's developing multi-layered design methodology. These houses were widely published at the time of their conception and played a significant role in the culture of American design at mid-century."

The exhibition consists of architectural models, period photographs by Ezra Stoller, and large scale panels with text and high quality reproductions of presentation and analysis drawings from the Paul Rudolph Archives at the Library of Congress.

Topics explored include the interrelationship between the production of these houses and the surrounding landscape, urbanism, regionalism, ethnographic analysis, along with links to concurrent architectural discourse.

The exhibition complements the curators' book, "Paul Rudolph: The Florida Houses," published in 2002 by Princeton Architectural Press.

Christopher Domin is an architect and educator currently living in Tucson Arizona, where he teaches at the University of Arizona. Joseph King is a practicing architect on the west coast of Florida.

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