The Hollyhock House was built by Frank Lloyd Wright between 1919 and 1923 for Aline Barnsdall and her family. She had a lot of land in Los Angeles known as Olive Hill. True to its name, Olive Hill was covered with olive trees. She wanted Wright to build several buildings for her, a theater, children's play house, apartments, and a small shopping center. First, she needed a home there.

The building was made of concrete and was formed by the shapes of the Froebel Blocks. Aline wanted her favorite hollyhock1.jpgflower, the hollyhock, to be incorporated into the house. Frank used the blocks to create the geometric shaped flowers.There were also real hollyhocks planted outside. Frank built the house so that you could view the ocean, mountains, and the tall buildings of downtown Los Angeles. Frank wanted the house to look as if it was a part of Olive hill. He liked the concrete because it was cheap and it looked just like stone.

Frank designed a very different entry way. It had a low, dark, alley-like walkway that led to a cave-like hall. Then that opened up into a huge, bright, and beautiful living room. The ceiling was painted to look like a desert landscape. Glass windows and doors brought a view of the many surrounding gardens. At the giant fireplace you could find the four elements-earth, air, fire, and water- represented. Fire burned in the hearth, light and air came through the skylight above, and Earth was represented through the stone that the fireplace was made of. Last, the water was represented through a small horseshoe-shaped pond that separated the fireplace from the rest of the room. True to his nature, Frank liked to build things for children. He made Aline's daughter, Sugar Top, a "child size" area. She had her own bedroom, bathroom, dressing room, and play porch that were scaled to her size. She had a seperate area in the dressing room where she could imagine she was in a tree house, and she could see out to her own "child size" garden.

krhock5.jpgAline and Sugar Top only lived in their beautiful house for a short time, they canceled the plans for the rest of the buildings. Frank was disappointed that he didn't get to fully design them. He had worked hard for a few years on the plans. A few years later Aline gave the house to the city so that children had a place to learn about art and the theater. Today the Holly hock house is an art school, gallery, and museum open to the public.

Picture 1 online langlab.wayne.edu/Models/Travel/98/015.
Picture 2 online http://www.beautifuldragons.503xtreme.com/Images/hollyhock.jpg
Picture 3 online langlab.wayne.edu/Models/Travel/98/015.jpg