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- Usually ships in: 3 to 5 business days
- Product ##: 11304
Height: 29 inches
Top: 24 x 36 inches
13-ply baltic birch plywood, shipped unassembled and unfinished - assembly instructions and hardware included
In the summer of 1941, writer Dagmar Doneghy Beach and her husband, University of Minnesota English professor Joseph Warren Beach, returned to Minnesota after a summer sabbatical at Harvard. The Beaches commissioned Minneapolis architects Elizabeth Scheu and Winston Close to design, build and furnish a weekend retreat at a cost of $1200 on the St. Croix River.
Although near the Twin Cities, the site was rustic and isolated. Local contractors built the two-room cabin into a steep hillside, 150 feet above the river, from native stone, glass and wood and topped it with a flat sod roof. Dagmar named it "Skywater."
With a $50 budget for furnishings, the architects designed and constructed most of the furniture themselves. Using inexpensive fir plywood they built a stool, dining/game table and chairs with clothesline backs. The furniture's simple geometric forms and use of common materials embody the tenets of modernist design, which sought to break away completely from the historic styles of the past.
Today, these furniture pieces, a gift of Elizabeth and Winston Close, are in the collections of the Minnesota Historical Society. They are valued additions to the Society's growing collection of architect-designed furniture and also document the range of styles found in Minnesotans' recreational homes.
Idealism and innovation are the guiding principles of Close Associates, the architecural firm founded by Elizabeth Scheu and Winton Close. Close, from Appleton, Wis., graduated from the University of Minnesota in 1927. Scheu, who grew up in Vienna in a house designed by Adolf Loos, received her undergraduate degree in architecture from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1934. Members of the first gheneration of modernists, the Closes met in graduate school at MIT where they received Master of Architecture degrees in 1935. They designed over 150 custom homes throughout the United States before selling Close Associates to Gar Hargens in 1987.
Our Price: $169.00