Pietro Belluschi's Burkes residence (photo by Brian Libby)
BY BRIAN LIBBY
In an appearance at Powell's Books, author Dee Williams will read from The Big Tiny, her book about discovering a sense of self by building an 84-square-foot home in Olympia from scratch. After being diagnosted with heart disease, "The notion of paying a 30-year mortgage didn’t make sense," Williams, an ex-Portlander, told The New York Times. "Living in a little house made sense for me; it clicked. It gave me a chance to live close to my friends and be happy with the time that I have.” Powells City of Books, 1005 W Burnside Street. 7:30PM Friday, May 2. Free.
One of the best-known landscape architects of his generation with an expertise straddling art, architecture, and urbanism, New York-based Ken Smith will deliver the nineteenth Mary Kim McKeown Memorial Lecture. Smith's acclaimed designs include the Roof Garden of the Museum of Modern Art, the World One project in Mumbai, and the American Express 9/11 Memorial art installation. University of Oregon, White Stag Block, 70 NW Couch Street. 5:30 p.m. on Friday, May 2. Free.
The Rose and the Chrysanthemum: Japanese Influence on NW Architecture
A craze for all things Japanese swept the United States beginning in the late 19th Century. By 1910, Japanese influence on Portland architecture began to take hold. The Arts and Crafts movement was highly indebted to the Japanese aesthetic, and it can be seen today in the thousands of craftsman bungalows throughout the Portland area. Japanese influence was perhaps even stronger during the mid-20th Century and it continues to this day in our local architecture. Lecturer Robert Jordan traces the origins of this architectural aesthetic from our trans-Pacific neighbor and its influences on our built environment. Architectural Heritage Center, 701 SE Grand Avenue. 10AM Saturday, May 3. $20 ($12 for AHC members).
Stately Home Tour
A walking tour of six historic homes in NW Portland, benefiting the NW Neighborhood Cultural Center and NW Children’s Theater & School. Homes include the Henry & Hattie Fries Home (1905), the Dr. Andrew & Mrs. Ida Giesy Home (1905), the Edward King Home (1910), the Cardwell Holman Home (1905), the Captain Joseph Sladen Home (1893), and the First Church of Christ Scientist (NW Neighborhood Cultural Center - 1909). 11AM Sunday, May 4. $25.
A principal of Sou Fujimoto Architects, a Tokyo-based practice distinguished by its provocative buildings that combine material experimentation and structural subtlety with transparency and permeability, Fujimoto is known for his residential and cultural projects. In 2013 he became the youngest architect ever to be invited to design the Serpentine Gallery Summer Pavilion in London. The Serpentine Gallery’s website states, “Widely acknowledged as one of the most important architects coming to prominence worldwide, Sou Fujimoto is the leading light of an exciting generation of artists who are re-inventing our relationship with the built environment.” Portland State University, Lincoln Hall (Room 75). 6pm, Wednesday, May 7. Free.
The South Park Blocks: A Cultural Mandate
The eleven-block downtown area known as the South Park Blocks was first platted and donated to the City in 1852, transforming a fire break parcel into the most desirable residential area of its day, complete with schools, playgrounds, stately homes and places of worship. This Architectural Heritage Center-produced walking tour of The South Park Blocks shows it stands alone as a place of revitalization, refreshment and cultural allure. 6PM Thursday, May 8. $20 ($12 for AHC members).
Anthony Belluschi: Living in A Work of Art
Legendary architect Pietro Belluschi’s architect son, Anthony, will discuss the unique experience of inhabiting Belluschi buildings and the significance of Pietro’s contributions to Pacific Northwest Regional Modernism. He will provide information about the notable design features of Belluschi homes and his own recent work to preserve, restore and revitalize some of Pietro’s houses, including the masterful Burkes residence, where Pietro spent his final years and where Anthony, after a career spent mostly in Chicago, now lives with his wife. Anthony will also share insights about learning from and working with his father. Portland Art Museum, 1219 SW Park. 7PM Friday, May 9. $15.
Belluschi Home Tour
Restore Oregon's annual Mid-Century Modern Home Tour is devoted this year to six Portland area homes designed by Pietro Belluschih.The sold-out tour is curated by Belluschi’s son, Anthony, who is also an accomplished architect. Homes on tour span several decades and include the Burkes-Belluschi House where Pietro lived until his passing in 1994 (and where Anthony now resides). 9:45AM Saturday, May 10. $45 ($35 for Restore Oregon members).
Gordon House Mother's Day Tea & Tour
Oregon's only Frank Lloyd Wright building, the Gordon House, was moved from its original location in Charbonneau 13 years ago, but has thrived at its new site at the Oregon Garden near Silverton. This Mother's Day event will include tea, music and tours of the almost completely-restored Usonian home. Gordon House, 869 W Main Street, Silverton. 2PM Saturday, May 10. $25.
Radical Restoration: Saving the Houses of Pietro Belluschi and Frank Lloyd Wright
Marylhurst University’s new Belluschi Pavilion is almost complete, representing the successful re-construction of a mid-century Pietro Belluschi-designed home that was meticulously de-constructed and stored before finding its new home. This discussion will highlight the the challenges faced by this project as well as those overcome by the team who helped move Frank Lloyd Wright’s Gordon House several years ago. The two-hour program will include presentations from our panelists related to both houses, and will include ample time for audience questions and answers. Following the panel discussion attendees will be invited to tour the Belluschi Pavilion. Marylhurst University, Belluschi Pavilion, 17600 Pacific Highway, Lake Oswego. 2PM Sunday, May 11. $15 ($10 for DoCoMoMo or Restore Oregon members).