April 25, 2017
“Living Mid-Century Modernism: Growing Up in Midland and Beyond”
Grace A. Dow Memorial Library Auditorium
Henry Whiting has had a life-long relationship with Mid-Century Modern and Organic architecture. He was born in a hospital designed by his great-Uncle Alden Dow, and went to schools, churches and civic buildings designed by him; but most importantly, grew up in a house that Alden designed for his family. Alden had been a close friend and mentor throughout Henry’s life until his death in 1983. Henry served on the board of the Alden B. Dow Creativity Center from 1978 to 1996. He attended Cranbrook School from grades 10 thru 12, and experienced the beauty and all-encompassing vision of another great architect, Eliel Saarinen. He attended the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where he studied landscape architecture. There, 30 miles from Frank Lloyd Wright’s home in Spring Green, Taliesin, he began his in-depth study of Wright’s architecture, an interest which was strongly encouraged by his uncle and enhanced by their lengthy conversations back in Midland. Upon graduation he moved to Idaho to help with the design and construction of the retirement house that his parents were building in Sun Valley. Almost immediately, he discovered the only work by Frank Lloyd Wright in Idaho, the Archie B. Teater studio, which he purchased five years later and began the first in a series of extensive renovations. He has lived there for the past 35 years and has written two books and numerous articles about the studio. During this period he also built a house in Sun Valley designed by Organic architect, Bart Prince. Friendships with renown architects like Prince, E. Fay Jones and John Lautner as well as Alden Dow has placed him squarely in the center of the world of Organic architecture.
Late June 2017
Mid-Century Modern Midland Tours