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Alexander Girard La Fonda del Sol menu

Eames Office Budweiser logo and packaging
Source: Eames Design : The work of Charles and Ray Eames

Paul Rand
Source: Paul Rand

Paul McCobb wine set  

Kenji Fujita / La Gardo Tackett

Scottsdale / Designer-Craftsmen


With my handy guide, Arizona Designer-Craftsmen: In the Beginning, by Dave Hampton, 
I hit the streets of Scottsdale to see the designer-craftsmen sites.


 The Kiva Crafts Center was built in 1955 by Lloyd Kiva New. The center was designed by T.S. Montgomery.
The center looks much the same as is did in this 1965 image from Arizona Designer-Craftsmen: In the Beginning.

The center was home to studios by some of the top artists, craftsmen and designers from the area.  Dick Seeger had his design 
gallery there, as did Charles and Otellie Loloma and of course Lloyd Kiva. 

Lloyd Kiva New and an ad from his shop. 
Source: Arizona Designer-Craftsmen: In the Beginning, by Dave Hampton

Lloyd Kiva shop
Source: Beyond Buckskin (Great article on Lloyd Kiva New)
Source: Life, 1956

The Kiva Crafts Center isn't really the hotbed of Scottsdale craft and design anymore.
 The bad 80s sign is unfortunate.

Original mosaic still on the rear building at the Kiva Crafts Center

This is hiding around the back. 

Along with the artistic boom in Scottsdale came a migration of well-heeled residents, including this family from California.
The MacPhersons can be seen here dining on this Circle Furniture set behind their custom-built home with 
views of Camelback Mountain.  Circle Furniture was a Gelndora California furniture company. 
Source: Life, 1956

Also constructed in 1956 was the Hotel Valley Ho Resort. The architect was Edward L. Varney and Associates. 

The Valley Ho today. The large tower was built in 2007.

The property has been "updated" and for the most part it was done really well. They could have toned the retro-fying down a bit, 
particularly in the lobby.  I'd definitely stay there again. Anyplace that has an Alexander Girard pillow on the bed is good in my book.

Tackett and Saarinen in the hotel restaurant.

There are still plenty of places to get your turquoise out there. 


Dome House / Soleri & Mills

The Dome House, 1949, in Cave Creek Arizona, by Paolo Soleri and Mark Mills. Both were former apprentices under 
Frank Lloyd Wright at Taliesin West.  The house was commissioned by Lenora Woods. The story 
goes that after the house was finished Mills got to keep the tools and Soleri got the client's daughter.  
Paolo and Lenora Woods' daughter Colly were married from 1949 until her passing in 1982.

It looks very FLW from this angle.



Photo: Julius Shulman

Photo: Julius Shulman

Photo: Julius Shulman

Photo: Julius Shulman

Photo: Julius Shulman

Cosanti / Inside

Paolo in his office.
Source: Life Magazine, 1966

The Cosanti office today



Now that's a doorknob.


My friend Daniel at Cosanti gave me a little behind the scenes tour. 

The office is filled with some great examples of sculpture by Soleri.

I want one of these!

Styrofoam sculpture forms under an array of cause bells.  

This bronze tray is part of the architecture.

Paolo's mailbox

Pumpkin Apse and Barrel Vault (1968-1971)

Interior of the barrel vault, 1990s

The barrel vault, today

Soleri didn't want to cut the tree down so he just built the building around it. 

Daniel explained that the color of the apse was created by painting the earth mound that was piled up to create the form.
The ribs on the barrel vault are made of cloth dipped in plaster under a cast concrete outer shell (see photo below).  
The rib forms were made in sections under scaffolding



Soleri model showing an urban environment concept for high-density living.

"A complex miniaturized urban solid of super-dense humano-texture." 
Visionary Cities - The Arcology of Paolo Soleri by Donald Wall 

This model wasn't originally black. It survived a fire in the Cosanti gallery.  

This is the cover of a box that held a fundraising package.
They were sandblasted by Soleri himself.

Early Soleri bridge model

This is a bridge concept for a project that was built in Scottsdale. 
The bridge that was actually built looks very different. More on that later.