March 15, 2013
Frank Lloyd Wright’s Millard House; Photos: Scott Mayoral
Only Frank Lloyd Wright could come up with the world’s most expensive modular home. Wright’s 1923 Millard House has been listed for sale by Crosy Doe Associates, WSJ Magazine (and Architizer A+ Award media sponsor) tells us — and despite the modular concrete construction the home sports, it’s likely that you can’t afford it. The house, which Wright affectionately called ”La Miniatura,” represents the architect’s first foray into modular building, where he attempted to marry mass-produced building materials with ornamentation. The home’s now-famous cruciform-stamped concrete blocks variegate light and shadow while the recurring pattern breaks up the dullness of the bare concrete walls. The idea was that the concrete block was cheap to both produce and customize, thus making it possible to design and build a quality, quasi-bespoke house at minimal costs. As it turned out, however, construction costs nearly doubled the original estimates, and the construction methods (using mortar to adhere the network of blocks together) proved faulty, (i.e. the roof leaked).
Still, Wright thought very highly of the house, which he indirectly compared to St. Peter’s in Rome. The home continues to grow in eminence, and it’s widely considered one of L.A.’s greatest architectural sites. All of which factors into the nearly $4,495,000 price tag. See more about the sale at WSJ.”