Tuesday, June 25, 2019

The Taliesin Class of 1924: A Case Study in Publicity and Fame

(Click on images to enlarge).
Wendingen, June 1919. Includes interior work by Frank Lloyd Wright and an essay on Wright by Jan Wils. Cover design by Jan Luger.

One has to go back to the early mentions of Wright in H. Th. Wijdeveld's Wendingen and to his short-lived 1922-23 atelier in Los Angeles to set the stage for what happened at Taliesin in 1924. The above 1919 issue of Wendingen featured an article, "The New Time: Some Thoughts on the Work of Frank Lloyd Wright" by Jan Wils and two photos of his interiors of the Coonley and Dana Residences. Also presaging the important 1924 "meeting of the minds" at Taliesin described in great detail later below, was the 1914-1920 correspondence between R. M. Schindler and future partner and colleague Richard Neutra concerning Schindler's apprenticeship with Wright and his intention to write a book on American building. (See for example "The Architect's Eye: R. M. Schindler and His Photography" by Eric John Lutz, University of California, Santa Barbara, 2004, p.14).

Frank Lloyd Wright (Imperial Hotel) issue of Wendingen published November 1922. El Lissitsky cover design. Le Coultre, pp. 122-123. (Author's note: El Lissitzky would also design the cover of Neutra's 1930 book Amerika.)

Wright returned from Japan for the last time to Taliesin in August of 1922. About that time a special issue of Wendingen was published including twenty-two illustrations of various Wright projects including, most importantly, the Imperial Hotel (and perhaps the Doheny project in Los Angeles). Coincidentally, the issue sported a now iconic cover designed by the Russian Constructivist El Lissitzky. Upon receiving the above issue of Wendingen by chance, Wright wrote a letter of appreciation to its author, Dutch architect H. P. Berlage (see below) who had previously written glowingly of Wright's work. (Wright to Berlage, November 30, 1922. Pfeiffer, The Heroic Years, p. 60). (Author's note: Berlage had in 1911 visited the U.S. and written appreciatively of Wright's work in "Newer American Architecture: Travel Impressions" in the Swiss journal Schweizerische Bauzeitung September 14, 21 and 28, 1912).

Erich Mendelsohn and H. Th. Wijdeveld, n.d., from the cover of Through a Clouded Glass: Mendelsohn, Wijdeveld and the Jewish Connection by Gilbert Herbert and Liliane Richter, Wasmuth, 2009.

Neutra was presented a gift of the El Lissitzky issue by Mendelsohn's Wendingen editor friend H.Th. Wijdeveld of which he excitedly wrote Dione's mother, 
"I don't think I wrote you that the new publication of Wright's buildings has appeared in Wendingen. It was sent to me as a present by architect Wydeveldt [sic], a pioneer of modern architecture in Holland. It costs 18,000 marks. Wydeveldt was here, and is a very nice person. But the evening with him and Mendelsohn was a failure. Present at the time were Dr. [Adolf] Behne (see below photo), Duvinage and his bride, about whom I have yet to tell you. In short: I have seen Wright's new buildings in a professionally poor presentation. No floor plans - it was hardly believable. Also the [Imperial] hotel in Tokyo where I was to participate. Also a kind of housing project in Los Angeles [Doheny?]. My stand to this architecture is something I never discussed with Mr. Mendelsohn. He is quite aware that Wright is at the moment the greatest living architect." (Promise and Fulfillment, Berlin, July 1922, p. 66). (Author's note: Dr. Adolf Behne was a member of the Deutscher Werkbund, a promoter of expressionist architecture and was well connected to Walter Gropius and Bruno Taut. He would go on to publish Der Modern Zweckbau (The Modern Functional Building) in 1926 featuring discussion of, and work by, Mendelsohn (and Neutra) and Wright (see below). Mendelsohn's and Neutra's exposure to these prominent figures of the publishing community would prove to hold them in good stead in the future. It is also during this period that Neutra tried in vain to find a publisher for Louis Sullivan's Kindergarten Chats.).
Adolf Behne, n.d., photographer unknown.

The Henry-Russell Hitchcock of German architectural critics, Adolf Behne was important to the future publicity of Mendelsohn, Neutra and Wright as can be seen below.

Der Modern Zweckbau by Adolf Behne, Drei Masken Verlag Munich, (1923) published 1926. Contains much work by Mendelsohn.

Neues Wohnen - Neues Bauen by Adolf Behne, Prometheus Bucher, 1927.

 Frank Lloyd Wright: Collected Works, 4 Volumes by A. Behne, Koyasha, Tokyo, 1928.
"Unbound as issued (10 1/4 x 7 1/2 in.; 260 x 10 mm).  Title-leaf, text booklet, 48 plates (numbered 145–192) of architectural photographs, drawings and plans, captioned in Japanese; occasional marginal spotting, title-leaf browned.  Publisher's portfolio, 2 ribbon ties, gilt-lettered green cloth spine, covers with Wright-like design in gilt, black, red, and cream, printed label affixed to inner back cover." (Sotheby's).
Neutra was exposed to this Wright Wendingen issue because his then employer Eric Mendelsohn was by then a friend of Wijdeveld and he had been featured in an issue dedicated to him the previous year (see below). 

Mendelsohn, Wendingen, published January 1921. Cover design by H. Th Wijdeveld. (From Le Coultre, p. 105).

Besides attracting the ambitious Neutra in October of 1921, Mendelsohn's increasingly significant body of work, including his most iconic project, the Einstein Tower (featured in the above) for which Neutra designed the landscaping plans, began to attract much attention. On his first trip to Holland in 1920 he established a personal relationship with Wendingen editor H. Th. Wijdeveld which resulted in the publication of the above issue which included 30 Mendelsohn sketches of mostly unbuilt projects. (Beyer, Ralph, "Erich Mendelsohn," No. 7, 1991, pp., 46-47). James, Kathleen, "Expressionism, Relativity, and the Einstein Tower," Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians, Vol. 53, No. 4 (Dec., 1994), pp. 392-413. Neutra letter to Mutterli, December 1921, P&F, p. 54. (

In an essay on Mendelsohn included in the above, his lifelong friend and advocate Oskar Beyer wrote, 
"As far as I can tell, there are at present only two countries of essential significance with regard to new architectural creations: America and Holland. With its pronounced industrial culture, America has created great things in the realm of new types of work buildings: the resulting 'American Style' is of high quality, not only technically but also artistically. In Holland, a century-old architectural culture is now manifesting itself in amazingly innovative solutions and projects, which transcend al bourgeois narrowness and torpor and seem to open up a cosmopolitan horizon. What new artists in both countries share is a cultivation of the technical and a breadth of imaginative achievement, and it is this that allows the German steel architect [Mendelsohn] to take his place at their side." (Heinze-Greenberg, Ita, "Travels to Holland, Palestine, the United States and Russia," in Eric Mendelsohn, Architect, 1887-1953 edited by Regina Stephan, Monacelli Press, New York, 1999, p. 56).

Neutra must have been extremely proud to be working with so well-connected an architect as Mendelsohn and hobnobbing with Einstein and staff during completion and landscaping of the building. For example, in a poignant December 1921 letter to his soon-to-be mother-in-law he wrote, 
"...The last and newest [project] is our Einstein Tower. In its interior, a concrete stairway climbs upward, and through its spiral the refractor lets the rays, captured from the infinite, fall down into a laboratory where they are broken up, and where they are thrown into a subterranean room of great length, thee times insulated, absolutely pitch dark and inaccessible. There, the rays pass through a mysterious apparatus which reflects them, back to the laboratory. This is all yellow in yellow (see color sketch above for example), while the photochemical basement is red and black. From the cupola I viewed the snowy, silent landscape. The  whole building is filled with smoke from the burning coal-fire that is to fry out the interiors. Einstein's assistant is a slender man whom one could describe as nearly beautiful, with an English officer's mustache, who is impatiently waiting to start his work, so he can show these earthlings - what? The stars are waiting too. However, we meanwhile had to paint and build in furniture. Kepler, Copernicus and Galileo are happy in heaven that the work progresses. I also spoke with the gardener, and the greatest nursery man of Germany, Karl Foerster, is going to deliver the plants.  prefer the stately and solemn Cleopatra trees.. whose roots go down deep while the sem sgrow towards heaven. To get color, I have chosen the white wonder asters coccoides, the fall heather which keeps on blooming until the first snow falls. It is still here, and one hears the choirs of the spheres from far away. Dear Mutterli, I am so glad that you can sleep again. If one gazes a little at the stars, one can sleep, because why should one not sleep. "Look into the streets and don't forget the starrs." (Richard to Mutterli, December 1921, P&F, p. 54).
Neutra would also have been quite familiar with above issue, likely perusing it in depth while in Mendelsohn's employ during 1921-1923. It would have provided much inspiration during his formative years as to the importance of publishing, despite having little to show except paper designs, to the advancement of one's career. Neutra and Mendelsohn would also have talked often of visiting America and exploring opportunities to relocate. Neutra also would have certainly known of Mendelsohn's desires to publish a book on America to take advantage of the "Amerikanismus" then prevalent in Germany and much of Europe. (See for example Scenes of the World to Come: European Architecture and the American Challenge, 1893-1960 by Jean-Louis Cohen, Flammarion, Paris, 1995. See also for example the discussion of Mendelsohn and Neutra in American Architects and the Mechanics of Fame by Roxanne Kuter Williamson, University of Texas Press, 1991). 

Despite learning much about the business and publicity of architecture with Mendelsohn, Neutra remained restless, as his April 1922 letter to Dione's mother relates, 
"My mood is somewhat like the April weather, probably will always remain so with Mendelsohn. At the moment I am in good shape. I have learned to limit my work to a tolerable degree which was, however, only possible because of my former industriousness. The Mossehaus is progressing nicely (see below)." (Promise and Fulfillment, p. 62).
Mossehaus (Berliner Tageblatt Building and conference room designed by Neutra, 1923). From Promise and Fulfillment, p. 52.

An archive photograph shows the revolving interior floor of a typical Zehlendorf living room, which was part of Richard Neutra’s design. From Wallpaper.

Neutra also was involved with the design of the Zehlendorf subdivision in Berlin while working for Mendelsohn (see above and below for example).

Richard Neutra in Berlin by Harriet Roth, Hatje-Cantz, 2016.

Wijdeveld invoice to Neutra for four back issues of Wendingen, May 14, 1923. Perhaps ordered on behalf of Mendelsohn's office library.

Shortly before leaving Mendelsohn's office Neutra ordered four 1918 back issues of Wendingen from Wijdeveld to perhaps complete Mendelsohn's office library set (see above). Neutra's ambivalence about continuing to work for Mendelsohn is evidenced by his April letter to his mother-in-law, 
"I am out of sorts at the moment because I have artistic differences with Mendelsohn and have to contend with his envy. I have never stopped being amazed how I was able to hold on to this position, how I could achieve this balancing act and still hold on to my integrity. In order to be married to an architect one has to be endowed with a steady, gay disposition; one sees him as little as if he were a sea captain. I had a string of successes and could show Mendelsohn effectively my worth and significance, as for instance, during the really interesting competition for a business center in Haifa (see below)." (Richard to Mutterli, April 1923, P&F, p. 91).
Aerial perspective of Business Center in Haifa, 1923. Mendelsohn and Neutra, architects. From Erich Mendelsohn, Architect, 1887-1953 edited by Regina Stephan, Monacelli Press, 1999, p. 63.

Intimately familiar with Mendelsohn's wanderlust to Holland and Palestine and his desires to visit American and Russia, Neutra, also inspired by Loos's love for America, couldn't wait to join Schindler (via Wright) in Southern California. In 1923 Neutra finally had the financial wherewithal to make the trip with his share of the prize money he and Mendelsohn had won in the design competition for a Business Center in Haifa, Palestine (see above and below). (Life and Shape by Richard Neutra, Appleton-Century-Crofts, New York, 1962, pp. 160-170). (For more on Mendelsohn's time in Palestine also see Till We Have Built Jerusalem: Architects of a New City by Adina Hoffman, Farrar, Straus & Giroux, New York, 2016).

Across the fold view of Design Competition winning entry for Commercial Center in Haifa, Israel. Mendelsohn and Neutra, architects, 1922. From Richard Neutra and the Search for Modern Architecture by Thomas S. Hines, Oxford University Press, New York, 1982, pp. 34-5.

Finally, in June, the Neutra's made the fateful decision to leave Mendelsohn and Germany for the United States. Dione's diary contained the entry,
"We have difficulties with Mendelsohn. The altercations and discussions are continuous and Richard is down with his nerves. His relationship with Mendelsohn has become so intolerable that Richard is willing to give notice on July 1. We had a letter from Schindler informing us that Wright was considering to invite Richard to come to Los Angeles. I will stay with Mutterli as I expect my child in December." (From Diope's diary, P&F, p. 92).
Neutra images of New York skyscrapers from Wie Baut Amerika?, 1927,p. 14. (Author's note: These images preceded by one year those taken by Mendelsohn and used in his 1926 publication Amerika.).

Neutra sketch of Brooklyn Bridge, 1923. From Hines, p. 44.

Neutra arrived in New York on October 24, 1923. He rented a room in the small apartment of an old Viennese friend Henry Menkes and found a temporary job with Menkes's employer, architect C. W. Short in Brooklyn and later with architect Maurice Courland in Manhattan. Almost immediately upon arriving in New York Neutra was engaged by an International Zionist committee, including Albert Einstein, Rabbi Stephen Wise and Mordecai Kaplan, to design a library for the new Hebrew University in Jerusalem which went unbuilt (see below). ("Richard Neutra: A Chronology" in The Architecture of Richard Neutra : From International Style to California Modern by Arthur Drexler and Thomas S. Hines, Museum of Modern Art, New York, 1982, p. 6). (Author's note: Neutra must have reveled in the fact that he could claim he worked on Mendelsohn's Einstein Tower project.).

Rendering for Hebrew University Library, Jerusalem, 1923 (project). Richard Neutra, architect. (From Samuel Gruber's Jewish Arts and Monuments).

Having preceded his erstwhile employer Mendelsohn to the shores of the U. S. by a year, Neutra would most likely have been homesick. He seemingly would have researched all things Viennese. Neutra serendipitously, or through Menkes, perhaps would have come across the Viennese Arts and Crafts shop of his later Los Angeles Academy of Modern Art director and employer Franz Ferenz (see above ad). While spending his first months in New York Neutra would also have certainly visited the very nearby Fifth Ave. Wiener Werkstatte of America outlet operated by another Viennese immigrant Joseph Urban. Schindler had a year earlier contacted Urban about opening a similar outlet in Los Angeles. (For more on Ferenz see my "Foundations of Los Angeles Modernism: Richard Neutra's Mod Squad"). (Author's note: Neutra likely used his Joseph Urban contacts to land three early 1931 lectures in the newly opened New School for Social Research designed by Urban himself. It was also through Urban's largesse that a group of Southern California architects were given a wall in the 1931 New York Architectural League exhibition thereby losing out in being included in Philip Johnson's competing "Rejected Architects" show. Fledgling Swiss modernist William Lescaze also emigrated to America in late 1923 but it is not known whether he and Neutra connected at this time. They may have crossed paths as early as 1919 when both were at Karl Moser's studio at the Zurich Technische Hochschule, with Neutra auditing classes while recovering from malaria and tuberculosis and accompanying Moser's class on sketching expeditions. (Hines, MoMA, p. 6).

Modern Interiors Designed and Executed by the Wiener Werkstaette, ca. 1923. From Harvard Mirador Viewer.

Double page in the catalog of the Wiener Werkstaette of America Inc. founded in 1922 by Josef Urban. (Author's note: Urban also designed Mar-A-Lago for Marjorie Merriweather Post from 1924-27.).

Taos Pueblo, October 1915. Photograph by R. M. Schindler. Courtesy UC Santa Barbara Art Museum, Architecture and Design Collections, Schindler Collection.

Schindler had previously written to Neutra in 1915 extolling the virtues of Southwest vernacular architecture after visiting Chicago painter friend Victor Higgins in Taos (see above). Schindler fondly remembered his Taos experiences in at least two letters to his future partner. A couple months after his return to Chicago he wrote, "My trip to San Francisco, but especially my stay in New Mexico among Indians and cowboys are unforgettable experiences. That part of America is a country one can be fond of." (Letter from Schindler to Richard Neutra, Chicago, February 9, 1916, courtesy Dione Neutra Papers). 

In another letter to Neutra shortly after his December 1920 move to Los Angeles to supervise construction of Frank Lloyd Wright's Hollyhock House for Aline Barnsdall, Schindler wrote of his strong impressions of the vernacular architecture of New Mexico,
"When I speak of American architecture I must say at once that there is none. . .The only buildings which testify to the deep feeling for soil on which they stand are the sun-baked adobe buildings of the first immigrants and their successors — Spanish and Mexican — in the south-western part of the country." (Letter from Schindler to Richard Neutra, Los Angeles, California, ca. January, 1921: cited in Vienna to Los Angeles: Two Journeys, Santa Monica, by E. McCoy,  Arts & Architecture Press, 1979, p.129).
Memories of these letters prompted Neutra to visit the Pueblo Indian exhibit at New York's Natural History Museum in 1923 of which he wrote, 
"I visited the Natural History Museum and came into the room of the Pueblo Indians. These are the people who influenced the modern [Schindlerian] Californian building activity. Whole villages were built in one block on top of a mountain. These cubes, hardly without any windows, are more than one story, have terraces on the front of the setback of the upper stories. It is impossible to comprehend the complexity of this agglomeration of building cubes." (Richard in New York to Dione in Germany, November 1923 about the time of the Schindler Thanksgiving photo elsewhere herein. From Richard Neutra: Promise and Fulfillment, 1919-1932, p. 101. See also my "Edward Weston and Mabel Dodge Luhan Remember D. H. Lawrence and Selected Carmel-Taos Connections").
Neutra later recalled this visit by including his personal photos of Southwestern vernacular architecture from his first trip to Southern California and Schindler's 1924-5 Pueblo Ribera project in La Jolla in his first book Wie Baut Amerika? (see below).

Southwestern vernacular architecture, ca. 1924. From Wie Baut Amerika? by Richard Neutra, Julius Hoffmamm, Stuttgart, 1927, pp. 74-75. 

Schindler's Pueblo Ribera (also on the cover). Ibid.,  p. 57.

While Neutra was still settling into his temporary digs and exploring New York in late 1923, the Schindler's were celebrating Thanksgiving dinner at Kings Road (see below). Dione shortly afterwards shared with Richard their thinking of naming their first born (February 6, 1924) after Frank Lloyd Wright. "To call him Frank Lloyd Wright would really be lovely in certain ways. In the first place you consider him to be the greatest architect, and secondly, he is the reason for your wanting to go to America." (Dione (Hagen, Germany) to Richard (New York), December 1923 from Promise and Fulfillment, p. 104).

Thanksgiving at Kings Road, 1923. This photo by R.M. Schindler shows future Schindler client Herman Sachs, far left, others at table clockwise from Sachs include Karl Howenstein and Edith Gutterson (friends from Chicago), Anton Martin Feller (Frank Lloyd Wright employee), E. Clare Schooler (lover of Dorothy Gibling), person partially obscured at right (unidentified), Betty Katz, Alexander R. Brandner, unidentified, and Max Pons (obscured, to Sachs’s right).

After returning to Taliesin upon the completion of the Imperial Hotel, Wright wrote to his son Lloyd  in Los Angeles in August 1922 that he was seriously considering a West Coast office and collaborating with him. On November 13th his divorce from Lloyd's mother Catherine was finalized. Wright also wrote to prospective client Mrs. C. P. Lowes that he would be in Los Angeles shortly after the holidays. (Sweeney, Robert L., "Frank Lloyd Wright Chronology, 1922-1932," in Frank Lloyd Wright: Designs for an American Landscape by David G. De Long, p. 186. Author's note: In late 1922 and early 1923 Lloyd was preoccupied with the design and construction of close friend Harry Bollman's house. See "Tina Modotti, Lloyd Wright and Otto Bollman Connections, 1920" for details).

Frank Lloyd Wright: The Complete 1925 "Wendingen" Series edited by Donald Hoffmann, Dover, 1992. Mrs. C. P. Lowes House on the cover. (Author's note: Adaption for design of the Storer House can easily be discerned by this image. I have chosen to use later book cover illustrations to illustrate some of the work in progress as a means of highlighting the importance of publicizing projects that remained unbuilt).

Rendering for Lowes House, 1922, Frank Lloyd Wright, architect. (Sweeney, p. 56). Author'a note: The Wright-Schindler Lowes House illustrates the intertwining of their work during this period. Wright's initial Lowes drawings were used in the 1925 Wendingen issues and were repurposed into Wright's 1923 Storer House which was used to illustrate the de Fries Wright monograph and Neutra's Wie Baut Amerika?. Schindler in turn performed some minor remodeling of the Storer House in 1926 and Pauline Schindler lived there in the early 1930s. For more details see my "Pauline Gibling Schindler: Vagabond Agent for Modernism." Schindler similarly became the architect of record for Aline Barnsdall and the Freemans.).

In a November 1922 letter to Schindler about the design of Mrs. C. P. Lowes House in Eagle Rock, Wright began by stating that he should not have left the design to "an assistant" [i.e., RMS] and that he is not going to continue to build in the old style." A series of letters between Wright and Schindler followed with Mrs. Lowes ending up objecting to the cost of Wright's design and instead opting to go with Schindler's alternative in late 1922 (see photo below). (Typed letter with ink annotations from FLW at Taliesin to RMS in Los Angeles, November and December 1922. From Frank Lloyd Wright correspondence with R. M. Schindler, 1914-1929 Finding Aid, Getty Research Institute. John and Lloyd Wright worked on FLW version of Lowes House at Taliesin in December 1922 per On Frank Lloyd Wright's Concrete Adobe by Donald Leslie Johnson, p. 153. Author's note: In a December 1922 letter Wright asked Schindler to bring Lloyd into the project. Schindler having much previous experience with the moonlighting Lloyd from the Barnsdall project likely ignored this plea. See my "Tina Modotti, Lloyd Wright and Otto Bollman Connections, 1920" for details).

C. P. Lowes House, Ellenwood Dr., Eagle Rock, 1923. R. M. Schindler, architect. Photo by Viroque Baker. 

Schindler walked from his house over to Wright's Harper Avenue (see below) atelier to help with the Millard House plans in February and March 1923. His time sheets while working for Wright also reference that he worked on the Lowes plans in May and June. His final construction drawings for the above Lowes House design are dated September 1923 indicating that this was clearly a transitional project to Schindler's personal practice. (Sweeney, Note 22, p. 246. Author's note: Schindler would have shared with Wright's disciples the details of his work to date in Southern California and work for Wright on Olive Hill which they would in turn have shared with Neutra at Taliesin the following year.). (Author's note: Schindler's Project Database indicates that he worked on over 50 mostly residential and remodel projects of all sizes from 1922 through 1924 with less than half being built).

FLW announcement of the move of his Los Angeles office to 1284 Harper Avenue in West Hollywood. (From Frank Lloyd Wright: Graphic Artist by Penny Fowler, Pomegranate, San Francisco, 2002, p. 66). (Author's note: Wright signed a lease for this property in March 1923 after arriving in Los Angeles the previous month from a five month hiatus at Taliesin. "Noted Architect Locates Here," Holly Leaves, April 20, 1923. Cited in Sweeney, p. 241).

In February of 1923 Wright signed a lease for a studio in West Hollywood (see above). Working for Wright from this location were son Lloyd, the Tsuchiuras, and Will Smith. Schindler walked from his house (see below) over to Wright's Harper Avenue atelier to help with the Millard House plans in February and March 1923. His time sheets while working for Wright also reference that he worked on the Lowes House plans in May and June. His final construction drawings for the above Lowes House design are dated September 1923 indicating that this was clearly a transitional project to Schindler's personal practice. (Sweeney, Note 22, p. 246. Author's note: Schindler would have shared with Wright's disciples the details of his work to date in Southern California and work for Wright on Olive Hill which they would in turn have shared with Neutra at Taliesin the following year.). (Author's note: Schindler's Project Database indicates that he worked on over 50 mostly residential and remodel projects of all sizes from 1922 through 1924 with less than half being built.).

Sophie and Edmund Gibling visiting with their daughters Pauline and Dorothy and Dorothy's lover, E. Claire Schooler and Pauline's new baby Mark at Kings Road in 1923.

The 1923 Los Angeles City Directory listed Lloyd as a landscape architect who was then living at 40 St. James Place with his office still in Room 522 of the Laughlin Building which he had shared with Schindler during their work on the Olive Hill compound. The 1924 Directory showed Lloyd moving to 1749 Garfield Place and Anton Martin Feller listed as an architect at 1645 N. Normandie Ave. and William E. Smith and Frank Lloyd Wright listed as architects at 1645b N. Vermont Ave. (Residence B at Olive Hill). Feller had been with Wright on the Imperial Hotel in Tokyo and followed him and the Tsuchiuras to Los Angeles. Feller attended the 1923 Thanksgiving dinner at Schindler's Kings Road house (see photo earlier above) despite his wife committing suicide two weeks before. ("Identified in Death Leap," Los Angeles Times, November 9, 1923, p. II-1. It is unclear whether Feller was at the time working for Wright or, as this article listed him, working for architect E. M. Frasier who then had the nearby Knickerbocker Hotel under construction. In any event, 1924 finds Feller at Taliesin for the first part of the year and where the Neutras met him during a July visit to Taliesin. Pauline Schindler apparently assisted Feller in finding a suitable home for his motherless infant daughter. I am grateful to William Blair Scott for the information on Feller.).

Harper Avenue Studio, 1923. From left, house boy, Nobuko Tsuchiura and William E. Smith. Samples of textile block are visible to the upper right. Photo by Kameki Tsuchiura. From Frank Lloyd Wright: Hollyhock House and Olive Hill, by Kathryn Smith, Rizzoli, 1992, p. 165.

March 1923 Wright leased 1284 Harper.

Barnsdall House, Beverly Hills, 1923. Frank Lloyd Wright, architect. From Sweeney, p. 24. ("Will Build in Beverly Hills," Holly Leaves, May 18, 1923, p. 28.

Four days before the February 9th death of his mother, Wright wrote to Louis Sullivan of his move to Los Angeles and his present prospects. He wrote again on March 3rd, 
"Lieber Meister, No word comes from you and I am wondering if you are perhaps ill. The weather here is remarkably fine - round clear sun - I have rented a house for a studio and am at work. Mrs. Barnsdall (of Olive Hill) has given me a new home to build for her at Beverly - in a beautiful 1/2 acre mountainside. Mrs. Millard of Highland Park has given me another little studio house on a charming lot - these with Mr. Moore make three 'repeaters' in the office at the same time. Three clients who 'came back.'... Affectionately, Frank" (Frank Lloyd Wright: The Heroic Years: 1920-1932 by Bruce Brooks Pfeiffer, p. 66).
The Barnsdall House in Beverly Hills project came to an end around June 1923. In July Barnsdall commissioned Wright to design some furniture and the Community Playhouse (Little Dipper) for her daughter Betty. Wright and secretary Will Smith moved to Residence B, finished remodeling and the plans, for the Little Dipper. Work did not begin on the Little Dipper until early November and was stopped for good on November 22nd. Wright then moved out of Residence B in December for the Beverly Hills Hotel.

Millard House rendering, Frank Lloyd Wright, architect, 1923. From Frank Lloyd Wright: Aus Dem Lebensewerke Eines Architekten by H. de Fries, Verlag Ernst Pollak, Berlin, 1926, p. 12. (Author's note: The Wright Atelier work during 1923 was compiled and published in color for the first time in this 1926 H. de Fries monograph.)

Nobu Tsuchiura at the Millard House construction site. Frank Lloyd Wright, architect. Photo by Kameki Tsuchiura ca. June 1923. Sweeney, p. 35.

 Doheny Ranch Project, Los Angeles, 1923. Frank Lloyd Wright, architect. From de Fries, p. 63

Frank Lloyd Wright: Design for an American Landscape, 1922-1932, by David G. De Long, Abrams, New York, 1996. Cover delineated by Kameki Tsuchiura, 1923.

Lake Tahoe Project, 1923. Frank Lloyd Wright, architect. Rendering by Kameki Tsuchiura. From de Fries, p. 45.

Residence B Remodel, Frank Lloyd Wright, architect, 1923. Photo by Kameki Tsuchiura, 1923. From Smith, p. 178.

During the summer of 1923 Barnsdall decided to donate Hollyhock House to the City of Los Angeles and lease to Wright  the use of Residence B and to remodel it to make it more suitable for her and her daughter. She also commissioned Wright to design the Community Playhouse (Little Dipper) intended as a school for her daughter. Wright moved from Harper Ave. into Residence B at Olive Hill in August and soon finished the Little Dipper plans (see below). Work did not begin until November. (Kathryn Smith, pp. 173-180).

"Little Dipper" for Aline Barnsdall, Olive, Hill, Hollywood, 1923. Frank Lloyd Wright, architect. From de Fries, p. 57.

Storer House, Hollywood, 1923. Frank Lloyd Wright, architect. From de Fries, p. 54.

Storer House construction photos from Neutra's Wie Baut Amerika?, pp. 60-61. Photos by Kameki Tsuchiura. (Author's note: This indicates the sharing and cross-pollination between Kameki Tsuchiura and Richard Neutra during their time together at Taliesin in 1924.

Freeman House, Hollywood, 1924. Frank Lloyd Wright, architect. From de Fries, p. 32.

From de Fries, p. 69. Photo of the Freeman House by Kameki Tsuchiura.
Moser, Werner, "Frank Lloyd Wright und Amerikanische Architektur," Das Werk, May 1925, p. 129. Photo of the Freeman House by Kameki Tsuchiura. (Author's note: Moser's article included a quite comprehensive portfolio of Wright's work. His Taliesin-mate Neutra also published an article on Chicago skyscrapers in the same issue as discussed later herein.).

E. Roscoe Shrader House, Mead & Requa, architects, Western Architect, June 1929, Plate 2. (Author's note: The above construction photos by Kameki Tsuchiura were taken from the backyard of noted Hollywood artist and Schindler family intimate E. Roscoe Shrader. For much more on Shrader see my "The Schindlers and the Hollywood Art Association").

Ennis House, Hollywood, 1924. Frank Lloyd Wright, architect. From de Fries, p. 55.

In November of 1923 Wright and Miriam Noel left Residence B on Olive Hill for Taliesin where they were married on November 19th. Three days later, construction on Little Dipper was halted permanently by Barnsdall over Wright's continuing difficulties with delivering the project in timely fashion. December found Wright back in Los Angeles, now staying at the Beverly Hills Hotel. A frustrated Wright moved the entire operation to Taliesin by the end of February 1924, leaving son Lloyd behind to finish the textile block houses then under construction, i.e., the Freeman and Ennis Houses. (Cite Schindler to Neutra letter).

Kameki and Nobuku Tschiura were associated with Frank Lloyd Wright from 1921-1925. First on the Imperial Hotel project in Tokyo with several other Japanese architects including Wright's right hand man Arata Endo, and Antonin Raymond and Will Smith who were summoned from Taliesin to help. In March 1923 the Tsuchiuras joined Wright, son Lloyd and Will Smith at his temporary headquarters on Harper Ave. in West Hollywood. From here they designed the four now iconic concrete textile block Millard, Storer, Freeman and Ennis Houses, and the unbuilt Doheny and Lake Tahoe developments (see illustrations above). (Author's note: Schindler had also worked with Endo, Raymond and Will Smith at Taliesin during 1918.).

From left, William E. Smith, R. M. Schindler, Arato Endo, Goichi Fujikura, and Julius Floto, consulting engineer on the Imperial Hotel, at Taliesin, spring 1918. From Frank Lloyd Wright: Hollyhock House and Olive Hill by Kathryn Smith, Rizzoli, 1992, p. 2. (Author's note: Julius Floto published an article on the survival of the Imperial Hotel from the disastrous earthquake in the February 1924 issue of Architectural Record.).

In September 1, 1923 a disastrous earthquake struck Tokyo. After a long period of anxiety Wright's West Hollywood atelier learned that the Imperial Hotel was relatively unscathed (see Los Angeles Times article below).

"American Outwits Quakes," Los Angeles Times, September 9, 1923, p. I-6.

"Experimenting with Human Lives," Frank Lloyd Wright, The Fine Art Society, Olive Hill, Hollywood, 1923. Published by Ralph Fletcher Seymour, Fine Arts Building, Chicago. (Author's note: Pauline Gibling (Schindler) lived with the Seymours while teaching at the progressive Ravinnia School with her college roommate Marian Da Camara and Seymour's wife Harriet. For much more on the Schindler-Seymour familial relationship, do a Seymour search in my "R. M. Schindler, Richard Neutra and Louis Sullivan's 'Kindergarten Chats'")

In his autobiography Schindler-Wright client Ralph Fletcher Seymour wrote, 
"Frank Lloyd Wright went to Japan and built the Imperial Hotel. An earthquake that shattered much of Tokyo left his building uninjured. He considered this to be a justification for his architectural principles and practices and wrote a little monograph to that effect, which I also printed for him (see above)..."
Seymour continued, 
"It [Experimenting with Human Lives] contains an interesting treatise on the direction of edifices, anywhere, in such a way the they will remain standing, but points out that they should be built in such sound principles of construction as the author, Frank Lloyd Wright used in his various enterprises and, in particular, in the direction of his famous hotel in Tokyo, which almost alone of the many fine edifices withstood the force of the Tokyo earthquake. He writes that, "The solution of all great problems is a simple - that is to say, an organic matter of putting the right thing in the right way in the right place. And because it is simple it is difficult, and because it is difficult it is rare." (Some Went this Way by Ralph Fletcher Seymour, 1945, pp. 125-6). 
Ibid. Verso.

Schindler certainly shared his experiences working for Wright on the Imperial Hotel and Olive Hill plans while at Taliesin with Arata Endo and Will Smith and in L.A. with the Tsuchiuras, Mosers and Smith. Lloyd Wright likely gave his own version. After hearing of the hotel's survival, Edward Weston's and Schindler's close mutual friend Merle Armitage reminisced of driving Frank Lloyd Wright and son Lloyd around on,
"a daily trip to every newspaper in town... Approaching city editors, Wright would shake his stick at them: with fire in his eyes, he would shout, 'I'm going to sue you. This is blasphemy. The Imperial Hotel is not damaged and you are going to pay me damages for what you are doing to my reputation." (Merle Armitage, "Frank Lloyd Wright: An American Original," Texas Quarterly, Spring 1962, pp. 85-86 and "Imperial Hotel Stands," Holly Leaves, September 21, 1923)
Kameki Tsuchiura later recalled, 
"While we were in Los Angeles, the internationally famous competition for the Chicago Tribune Building took place. Mr. Wright's Lieber Meister, Mr. Louis Sullivan  - by that time retired from architectural activity - sent a letter to Mr. Wright with photographs of the winners of this competition and his comment that the second prize design by Eliel Saarinen was much better than the first by Raymond Hood. I remember this very clearly (see below)." ("Kamaki Tsuchiura, Draftsman from Japan," in About Wright edited by Edgar Tafel, Wiley, 1993, pp. 93-95). 
Left, second prize, Eliel Saarinen, Helsingfors, Finland. Right, first prize, John Mead Howells and Raymond Hood, New York. (Sullivan, Louis H., "The Chicago Tribune Competition," Architectural Record, February, 1923, pp. 154-155).

 "Awards in Architects' Competition for New Tribune Building," Chicago Tribune, December 3, 1922, p. I-3. Courtesy of the UC Santa Barbara, University Art Museum, Architecture and Design Collections, R. M. Schindler Collection. 

Schindler also had actually been following the competition closely and kept a file of clippings sent to him by friends in Chicago (see example above). He also read Sullivan's critique and sent him a letter expressing his agreement evidenced by Sullivan's March 6, 1923 reply from The Cliff Dwellers Club.
"Dear Schindler,
     Your interesting letter of Feb. 28th at hand, thanks for Frank Wright's address: its receipt has enabled me to write him a couple of important letters. [Schindler had apparently sent Sullivan the Harper Ave. address.].
     Glad you like the Tribune 'Critique.' It has produced a sensation: and the issue has sold out.
     You ask me why I don't write more? from which I take it you have not been following my 'Autobiography of an Idea' - ten chapters of which have already appeared serially in 'The Journal of the Am. Inst. of Architects,' which issues monthly. I have also written something on the Imperial Hotel. Good luck to you in spite of difficulties. Kindest to the Missus.
     Louis H. Sullivan" (From McCoy's Two Journeys, p. 149). (Author's note: Sullivan's Autobiography of An Idea was rushed to publication and presented to Sullivan on his deathbed in April 1924. His articles on the Imperial Hotel surviving the 1923 earthquake first published in Architectural Record Wright also had reprinted in Wendingen). (See also my "R. M. Schindler, Richard Neutra and Louis Sullivan's Kindergarten Chats" for more on Schindler and Neutra's efforts trying to publish Sullivan's Kindergarten Chats.)
Kameki Tsuchiura's recollection of his time with Wright continued,
"We went back to Taliesin in December 1923, but Lloyd Wright stayed in Los Angeles. Werner Moser of Switzerland and Richard Neutra of Germany participated with us, and A. Feller of Germany was with us for a short period." (Author's note: See earlier photo of Thanksgiving 1923 at Kings Road which includes Feller.).
Albert M. Johnson National Life Insurance Co, Chicago, 1924 (project). Frank Lloyd Wright, architect. From Pfeiffer, p. 105). (Perhaps delineated by Charles Morgan as discussed elsewhere herein.). (Author's note: Werner Moser worked on this project as seen later herein, and although not built, was published in the Swiss journal ABC in 1926 edited by Moser's close friend Mart Stam and in Ludwig Hilberseimer's Internationale Neue Baukunst as discussed later below.).

Nakoma Country Club, Madison, Wisconsin, 1923. Frank Lloyd Wright, architect.  From de Fries, p. 51.
"At Taliesin, a project of a large building in Chicago for the National Insurance Company (see above) was being planned. But this project was not executed, leaving only sketches of the plan and perspective drawings. The Nakoma country Club (also above) - we worked on those drawings at the same time - was not executed either. We were busy however, on the drafting boards for these projects (see below)."
"In those days Mr. Wright was contributing an article every month for the Architectural Record; he often read them for us. Sometimes, he put colors with colored pencils on the perspective drawings we made. He did it very pleasantly; he seemed to enjoy himself in doing that. He used the waxed Japanese rice paper that he brought back from Tokyo with him. It was better than tracing paper for coloring, and he liked to use it. Drawings for the cover and title page for his book published by Wendingen of Holland were also designed during these days. I think it was perhaps spring of 1925 when Erich Mendelsohn visited Taliesin. He was traveling in the States, and Richard Neutra - who was then at Taliesin - had been Mendelsohn's partner in designing the Berliner Tageblatt [Mossehaus]. We all gathered in Mr. Wright's living room; Mrs. Neutra played Bach with her violin-cello, and Mr. Mendelsohn drew various sketches of the Einstein Tower on many sheets of paper again and again, so fast."
Related articles published in trade journals Wright was likely to have subscribed to were:
Architectural Record: April, 1923 "Concerning the Imperial Hotel," by Louis Sullivan
February 1924 Sullivan, "Reflections on the Tokyo Disaster" and Floto, "Imperial Hotel, Tokyo, Japan," July 1924, Wright, Frank Lloyd, "Louis Henry Sullivan, His Work,"
Architect: June 1923 "Imperial Hotel, Tokyo, Japan" adaptation of Sullivan's article
Western Architect: April 1923, Wright, Frank Lloyd, "In the Cause of Architecture: the New Imperial Hotel, Tokio, Frank Lloyd Wright, architect" and November 1923,"In the Cause of Architecture: In the Wake of the Quake, Concerning the Imperial Hotel, Tokio" (Ibid.) June 1924, Wright, Frank Lloyd, "Louis Henry Sullivan, Beloved Master,"
Various publications on surviving the quake, for example: ("American Buildings Withstand Japanese Quake," Architect and Engineer, October 1923, p. 105 and "Personal," Ibid., p. 113). 

 Sketch by Mendelsohn for Frank Lloyd Wright, dated November 2-3, 1924. From Erich Mendelsohn, Architect, 1887-1953, edited by Regina Stephan, Monacelli Press, New York, 1999, p. 67.
"Soon after that, Werner Moser and Richard Neutra left Taliesin, and Olgivanna came to Taliesin as Mr. Wright's new wife [sic] with her daughter Svetlana. The new life began there. William Smith, my wife and I were still there, and one evening while we were all in the dining room that was located away from the main building, a fire broke out and destroyed a large portion of Taliesin. It was the second fire that burned Taliesin, and most of the fine arts Mr. Wright had collected during his stay in Japan were lost. But the drafting room and the guest room were saved along with his famous collection of Japanese prints.  
William Smith and I worked on the drawings for reconstruction of Taliesin; it was our last job there. My wife and I left there in November 1925, and did not see the new Taliesin." ("Kamaki Tsuchiura, Draftsman from Japan," in About Wright edited by Edgar Tafel, Wiley, 1993, pp. 93-95). (Author's note: The colored drawings Tsuchiura remembered were perhaps used for the 1926 de Fries monograph which were shown earlier above.).
Despite being a down period for Frank Lloyd Wright, 1923-4 was fascinating in many ways. As Richard Neutra was giving notice to Erich Mendelsohn, his prolific employer of the last few years, and preparing to sail for New York in August of 1923, Frank Lloyd Wright was moving with his secretary Will Smith from his atelier at 1284 Harper Ave. to Aline Barnsdall's Residence B on Olive Hill. Plans were completed for Aline Barnsdall's Community Playhouse or "Little Dipper" School shortly thereafter. Wright first promised completion of the project by November 1st.  In the meantime, Barnsdall used the 2nd floor of Hollyhock House for her daughter's school, perhaps employing Leah Press Lovell under her director of choice, Helen Girven, until then.

Wright and Miriam Noel left for Taliesin sometime around October and were back in L.A. around end of 1923. After Little Dipper construction ceased in November, Wright angrily moved out of Residence B to the Beverly Hills Hotel where he stayed through February 1924. (Smith, p. 186) (per Schindler letter to Neutra, 2-2-24).

After his brief stay in New York, Neutra followed in Schindler's footsteps to Chicago in late February 1924 where his goal was, like Schindler, to also apprentice with Wright. He spent his first weeks at Hull House where Pauline Schindler (nee Gibling) had lived and taught in 1916. Moving to Highland Park in April, he got a job as draftsman at Holabird & Roche working on the Palmer House Hotel. Neutra carefully documented his work and took many construction photographs for the purpose of compiling a book on American construction methods. Shortly after arriving, Neutra visited all of Wright's and Louis Sullivan's Chicago buildings of which he opined in his autobiography, "Here in the middle of North America, I thought was work which could be compared with what Otto Wagner had been doing in Vienna of Central Europe. And that was the very highest accolade I was capable of giving to anything built." (Life and Shape by Richard Neutra, p. 181). 

Neutra further wrote that while still trying to find a publisher for Kindergarten Chats shortly after his move to Chicago,
"I also talked to a few people in Chicago about it, and they all laughed at me. Sullivan? they asked, - isn't he that old drunkard? He's a pauper now, and is being supported by his friends; each one pitches in five dollars a month." (Life & Shape, p. 182).
While researching Wright's and Sullivan's buildings and working for his new employer Holabird & Roche on the Palmer House Hotel project, Neutra met a mutual friend of Wright and the Schindler's, the noted publisher, artist and Cliff Dwellers Club founding officer, the earlier-mentioned Ralph Fletcher Seymour (see below), one of the people providing financial support to Sullivan. Seymour, whose office was in the Fine Arts Building where Wright had also previously held court, besides publishing the earlier mentioned "Experimental Living" pamphlet, had published in 1912 Wright's first ever book, The Japanese Print: An Interpretation by Frank Lloyd Wright (see above). 

Schindler and Seymour were close friends from his and wife Pauline's time in Chicago. Before meeting and marrying RMS Pauline had lived with the Seymours with Marian Da Camara [Chace], future Kings Road housemate, while they were teaching at the Ravinia School in 1917-18. Schindler and Seymour had been corresponding regarding Schindler designing a cottage for Seymour in Carmel-by-the-Sea, California. It was likely through Seymour that Neutra finally met Sullivan. (Author's note: Seymour's Carmel cottage was eventually built and both Pauline and RMS visited after their estrangement. For more on this see my "Schindler in Carmel, 1924." Schindler, Neutra and Seymour would all lecture at Carmel's Denny-Watrous Gallery between late 1928 and 1931.).

Ralph Fletcher Seymour, ca. 1912. From Caxton Club Journal Caxtonian, May 2011.

Neutra soon found a broken-spirited Sullivan living in loneliness and poverty at the shabby Warner Hotel. After Neutra sent flowers up to his room, Sullivan came down a while later and invited him to dinner at the Cliff Dwellers Club. Sullivan spoke of being forgotten and his ill health and Neutra tried to reassure him of his influence upon European architects. It was at this meeting that Neutra finally returned Sullivan's Kindergarten Chats manuscript that he had tried in vain for four years to find a publisher for. (Richard Neutra and the Search for Modern Architecture by Thomas S. Hines, University of California Press, 1994, p. 51) and Life & Shape, p. 182. See also Richard to Dione, April 1924, P&F, pp. 119-20. See also my "Chats").).

 North Shore Temple, Kenmore Ave., Chicago, 1924, (project). Richard Neutra, architect.

Richard wrote to his New York friend Frances Toplitz about the daily grind in which he then found himself. 
"It is deplorable that the day has only twenty-four hours. Nine hours downtown without any time for myself. Three hours in transit. (At the moment I am sitting in a railway car, where I can write a letter which I am doing right now, or I study the "steel construction" by Burt, which I usually do. I usually reach my room at 10:00 p.m. - unless I have to work overtime.) Then I work without interruptions on design for Mr. Sonderling's Northshore Temple until I go to bed. Naturally, and as I predicted, without any remuneration." (Chicago April 1924, Promise and Fulfillment, p. 121).
While working for Holabird & Roche Neutra also had an article published in Europe by Die Baugilde's editor Heinrich de Fries in which he published his recently taken Chicago skyscraper photos and discussed the Tribune Tower structural system which he characterized as "extraordinary" notwithstanding its Gothic cladding, and expressed his admiration for H. J. Burt's role in bringing to fruition the technology of the skyscraper. Neutra would later use some of these same Chicago high-rise images in his May 1925 Das Werk article "Architects and Construction in Chicago" and his 1927 book Wie Baut Amerika? (Neutra, Richard, "Die altesten Hochhauser und der Jungste Turm," [The Oldest High-Rises and the Youngest Tower], Die Baugilde, 6 (1924): 495-97, 505-7 and cited in Solomonson, p. 256). (Author's note: Neutra also had published "Eine Bauweise in bewehrtem Beton an Neubauten von Frank Lloyd Wright" in de Fries's Die Baugilde in the February 1925 issue as he and his family were leaving Taliesin for Southern California. These two Neutra articles published by de Fries were the likely connection that made possible the Wright publication of  Frank Lloyd Wright: Aus dem Lebenswerke eines Architekten in 1926 as discussed elsewhere herein. Neutra's relationship with de Fries proved beneficial with his Deutscher Werkbund connections helping Neutra to publish 13 articles in the Werkbund's organ Die Form to which de Fries was a frequent contributor.).

"Architekten und Bauwesen in Chicago," Das Werk, May 1925, pp. 143-4. (Author's note: This article appeared in the same issue as Werner Moser's earlier mentioned piece on Wright, indicating a coordinated publishing effort of these two Taliesin apprentices. It also was likely intended to scoop the photos of skyscrapers in Mendelsohn's Amerika.).

Tribune Tower under construction from the southwest. Photograph by Eugene Cour, July 5, 1924. From Solomonson, p. 256. Original image courtesy of Chicago Tribune Company.

The above and below construction photos illustrate Burt's structural design and indicate how rapidly the structure rose. Ironically, Neutra would not include any images of the Tribune Tower in either of his first two books, the 1926 Wie Baut Amerika? and the 1930 Amerika: Neues Bauen in der Welt, probably out of respect for Sullivan's opinions on the design competition which they likely discussed during their only meeting shortly before his death. He did, however, include an extensive illustrated construction chronology featuring the structural skeleton of the Palmer House project in his first book (as mentioned above).

Tribune Tower under construction from the north. Photograph by Eugene Cour, September 22, 1924. From Solomonson, p. 258. Original image courtesy of Chicago Tribune Company. (Author's note: It was about this time that Neutra left for Taliesin.).

Tribune Tower under construction. Photo by Eric Mendelsohn in November 1924 from Amerika, published in 1926. (Author's note: Barry Byrne was Mendelsohn's Chicago tour guide and would six months later later play the same role for Galka Scheyer on her way to Los Angeles to meet Schindler, Neutra and friends and in 1927 for Lewis Mumford. For more on Byrne see my "Galka Scheyer and Barry Byrne, Bauhaus Connections, 1924-1925"). 

Neutra also around this time entered the Vienna-Heitzing Temple design competition, with his un-winning design again going unbuilt (see below).

"Die Neue Welt Tempel," Vienna-Heitzing competition, (unbuilt) spring 1924, Richard Neutra, architect. From Synagogues of Europe: Architecture, History, Meaning by Carol Herselle Krinsky, Dover, 1985, p. 198.

Chicago Architectural Exhibition League, May 1 - June 1, 1924Art Institute of Chicago.

Similar to Schindler being surprised by an exhibition of Wright's work at the Art Institute of Chicago upon his 1914 arrival in Chicago, Neutra likely attended the above May 1924 exhibition shortly after his arrival. He was very pleased to find a catalogue frontispiece and 17 other drawings by his and Wright's idol Louis Sullivan, nine projects by his new employer Holabird & Roche including his personal project "The Palmer House," Hood & Howell's Tribune Tower which he watched under construction on his daily commute on the train, and Hugh Ferris's Zoning Study for New York from where he had just arrived. Neutra documented his work on the Palmer House and his own study of the new New York "high rise" zoning law into his first book Wie Baut Amerika?  An ad in the back matter of the catalogue must have drawn Neutra's attention as it bore a striking resemblance to his and Schindler's idol Adolf Loos's Tribune Tower competition entry (see later below). (Chicago Architectural Exhibition League, 1924, Art Institute of Chicago). (Author's note: For Wright's 1914 exhibition see my "Irving Gill, Homer Laughlin and the Beginnings of ModernArchitecture in Los Angeles, Part II, 1911-1916"). (Author's note: The mercurial Miriam Noel left Wright and Taliesin sometime in May of 1924.).

Louis Sullivan, frontispiece. Ibid.

Palmer House, Holabird & Roche, architects. Ibid.

Study of the New York Zoning Law, Hugh Ferriss, designer. Ibid.

Description of Chicago and New York Zoning Laws from Wie Baut Amerika?, p. 18. 

Ad for Chicago Tribune Tower, Hood & Howells, architects. Ibid.

Memorial Stadium Doric column, Holabird and Roche, Ibid., back matter. (Author's note: Reminiscent of Loos's Tribune Tower entry from my "R. M. Schindler, Richard Neutra and Louis Sullivan's Kindergarten Chats).

 Chicago Tribune Tower Competition entry, Adolf Loos, 1922. From Adolf  Loos by Alessandra Coppa, 24 Ore Cultura, 2013, p. 103.

Palmer House construction photos from Wie Baut Amerika?, p. 40.


Schindler and Werner Moser at Kings Road, 1924. Photo courtesy of U-C-Santa Barbara Architecture and Design Collections, Schindler Papers. (Author's note: In 1919 Neutra had worked in the offices of Werner Moser's father Karl, one of the founders of CIAM and its first president. Neutra was also one of the early members of CIAM, presenting his "Rush City Reformed" at the 1930 annual meeting in Brussels. Schindler's Kings Road House was published for the first time in the February 1932 issue of T-Square, not coincidentally the same month Neutra's work was on display in MoMA's "Modern Architecture: International Exhibition.".)

In early 1924 Werner Moser and his wife Sylva visited Wright looking for employment and also the Schindlers at Kings Road where the above and below photos were taken. They perhaps stayed in the guest studio while visiting (see three below). (Author's note: Schindler proudly showed the Moser's his work including the Pueblo Ribera project in La Jolla as confirmed in a March 5, 1925 letter from Moser at Taliesin to Schindler at Kings Road.). (Courtesy March 5, 1925 letter from Moser to Schindler from the Schindler Collection at UC-Santa Barbara graciously translated by Gabrielle Mary Ann Schicketanz at studioschicketanz.com).

Schindler's Kings Road House, 1924. Photo by Werner Moser. From Schindler, Kings Road, and Southern California Modernism by Robert Sweeney and Judith Sheine, University of California Press, 2012, p. 25.

Ibid., p. 25.

Sylva Moser at Kings Road, 1924. Photo courtesy of U-C-Santa Barbara Architecture and Design Collections, Schindler Papers. 

Interior view of Kings Road Guest Apt., August 1922. (Sweeney and Sheine, p. 24)

Helena Rubenstein, 1924 modeling a 1923 Paul Poiret dress. Nikolas Muray photo from The Jewish Museum.

Not long after Sullivan's funeral, Schindler wrote Seymour that he was planning a stopover in Chicago on his way to New York to remodel Helena Rubenstein's Manhattan salon and Greenwich, CT residence. He had just completed a reception room-salon in Hollywood for her at the southeast corner of Highland Ave. and Hollywood Blvd. just a block from Frank Lloyd Wright's Freeman House. The project was photographed by Viroque Baker who may have provided the introduction through her considerable Hollywood Woman's Club connections. (For more on this see my "The Schindlers and the Hollywood Art Association," WSZW and "The Schindlers in Carmel, 1924"). 

Helena Rubenstein Salon Reception Room, 1780 N. Highland Ave., Hollywood, 1924. R. M. Schindler, architect. Courtesy UC-Santa Barbara Architecture and Design Collections, R. M. Schindler Collection. A special thanks to curator Jocelyn Gibbs for providing this image.

Ralph Fletcher Seymour letter to R. M. Schindler, ca. May 1924. Courtesy UC-Santa Barbara Art Museum, Architecture and Design Collections, R. M. Schindler Papers.

Seymour's above reply stated that they were looking forward to him staying with them while he was in Chicago and that Neutra wanted to see him while he was passing through (see above). The late May layover enabled a renewal of his friendship with Neutra on very friendly terms after their 10-year separation. This reunion most certainly heightened Neutra's eagerness to finally make the fateful move to Los Angeles. (From R. M. Schindler by Judith Sheine, Phaidon, 2001, p. 65). 

Schindler went to New York armed with a letter of introduction from Neutra to his friend Frances Toplitz, "He has a commission in your metropolis. He is a good and gifted man with little interest in society. He could tell you interesting things if you can induce him to speak..." Later after they had all met and been together in New York, Neutra observed to Toplitz that indeed Schindler was,
"the most progressive architect in the circle of my acquaintances. He is not an applied artist, not a gambler, does not make pleasant jokes. He is an engineer who is using his all-comprising knowledge logically. When we met after ten years separation, we were not disappointed in each other. To find this out was as important for my future path as it is in the case of Wright." (Neutra to Frances Toplitz, May 31 and June 20, 1924, Dione Neutra Papers. In Hines, p.52).
It is not hard to imagine Neutra and Schindler roaming the streets of New York getting the lay of the land and meeting fellow Viennese architect Joseph Urban whom Schindler had previously corresponded with regarding opening up a Los Angeles outlet for Wiener Werkstatte products. They also perhaps met with Viennese Arts & Craft dealer and book publisher Franz Ferenz who later employed both architects (and their German speaking colleagues Kem Weber, Jakob Asanger, Jock Peters) at his Los Angeles Academy of Modern Art. Dione Neutra later reminisced of this meeting "Schindler told me the other day he cannot believe I am one and the same person he first met in New York because I have changed completely." (Dione to Vreneli, August 1925, from Richard Neutra: Promise and Fulfillment, 1919-1932, Southern Illinois University Press, 1986, pp. 125, 141).

(Author's note: Schindler's itinerary around this time was May in Chicago, June in New York, July back to Los Angeles via New Orleans, and August in Carmel inspecting Ralph Fletcher Seymour's property. (For details, see my "Schindler's in Carmel, 1924").  Schindler does some small projects and remodeling for Barnsdall and starts designing the Packard House during December 1924. He designed some duplexes for developer Floren earlier in the year and the Lowes House in 1923-24. He also completed work on the Pueblo Ribera project in La Jolla.).

Richard and Dione Neutra, Taliesin, July 1924. From Promise and Fulfillment, p. 52.

Dione wrote to her parents about her and Richard's initial exciting visit to Taliesen in July after leaving Ellis Island. "We sat on the ridge under a roof of leaves, enjoying a magnificent view while [Werner] Moser told us about their life here and about Los Angeles..." Hearing all about the Schindlers in Los Angeles must have been alluring to the relative newlyweds. (Dione to her parents, from Highland Park, July 1924, Promise and Fulfillment, pp. 125-128). (Author's note: This is perhaps the time that the Neutras first met the Mosers. Neutra would have fondly reminisced with Moser of his time spent with his professor father Karl (and William Lescaze) in Switzerland in 1919 as discussed elsewhere herein.).

The Neutra's visited Taliesin in July after returning from New York, where they first met the Mosers, the Tsuchiuras, Anton Martin Feller and Will Smith. The Neutras also met Wright client Albert Johnson and his family on this visit. (Cheap and Thin, pp. 50-53 and Wright Autobiography, p. 259). 

Written just before the Neutra's visit, Frank Lloyd Wright's six-page tribute to "The Master" was published in the July issue of Architectural Record. Wright wrote at length of Sullivan's genius and the importance of his four masterpieces,
"Only the Chicago Auditorium, the Transportation Building, the Getty Tomb and the Wainwright Building are necessary to show the great reach of creative activity that was Louis Sullivan's genius. ... When he brought in the board with the motive for the Wainwright Building outlined in profile and in scheme upon it and threw it down on the table, I was perfectly aware of what had happened. This was Louis Sullivan's greatest moment - his greatest effort. The "skyscraper," as a new thing beneath the sun, an entity with virtue, individuality and beauty all its own, was born." (Wright, Frank Lloyd, "Louis H. Sullivan - His Work," Architectural Record, July, 1924, pp. 28-33. See also Wright, Frank Lloyd, "Louis Henry Sullivan: Beloved Master," Western Architect, June 1924").
In August Wright invited Neutra to work at Taliesin for $160 per week. The Neutras arrived from Chicago in late September to begin work. Just before the Neutras arrived at Taliesin, Wright and Schindler had a heated exchange of letters regarding Wright's relationship with Barnsdall perhaps in conjunction with the Pergola and Wading Pool project after cancellation of the Little Dipper in November of 1923. (Finding aid, Getty Research Institute). (Author's note: Coincidentally, this would be the first project that Schindler and Neutra would collaborate on upon the Neutra's arrival in Los Angeles with Neutra doing the landscape plans.).
The Neutras at Taliesin, October 1924. From left, Dione, Richard, FLW's namesake baby Frank, and Dione's mother Lilly Niedermann. From Richard Neutra: Promise and Fulfillment, 1919-1932, p. 51.

The Neutras finally arrived at Taliesin in September 1924. Dione's mother Lily Niederman left Germany with young Frank on September 27th and spent much of October at Taliesin leaving just before Mendelsohn's November 2nd arrival. 

FLW having a Kindergarten Chat with baby Frank Neutra at Taliesin, 1924. From Richard Neutra: Promise and Fulfillment, 1919-1932, p. 51. 

Illustration of Storer House cement block construction from Wie Baut Amerika?, pp.60-61. Photos by Kameki Tsuchiura.

Neutra made good use of his time in Chicago working for first, Holabird & Roche on the Palmer House and then Frank Lloyd Wright on the Strong Automotive Objective and perhaps the Albert Johnson House in Death Valley. He cobbled together highlights from what he learned from his Palmer House job, ideas from the 1924 Chicago Exhibition League catalogue, from Wright at Taliesin and from Schindler after his move to Los Angeles into his first book Wie Baut Amerika? (or How America Builds). (See Wright's former disciple Walter Burley Griffin's patented "Knitlock" construction system described on pp. 58-59 of Neutra's Wie Baut Amerika? (see below). See also "Notes on W. B. Griffin's "Knitlock" and His Architectural Projects in Canberra," Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians, Vol. 29 No. 2, May, 1970; (pp. 188-193).

Wie Baut Amerika?, pp. 58-59.

(Work on Wright monograph likely begins shortly before Mendelsohn arrival (see Neutra letter to de Fries later herein). 

In December Shindler wrote to Neutra inviting him to California. (P&F, p. 130). The Neutras left Taliesin in February for Los Angeles. Neutra also had published "Eine Bauweise in bewehrtem Beton an Neubauten von Frank Lloyd Wright" in Die Baugilde in the February 1925 issue edited by Wright's 1926 monograph publisher Heinrich de Fries.

From left to right, Frank Lloyd Wright, Richard Neutra, Sylva Moser, and new baby, Kameki Tsuchiura, Nobu Tsuchiura, Werner Moser on the violin and Dione Neutra on the cello in the living room at Taliesin, Christmas, 1924. From Frank Lloyd Wright: Letters to Architects edited by Bruce Brooks Pfeiffer, California State University Press, Fresno, 1984.

Wright wrote fondly of the 1924-5 group at Taliesin,
"They were all my immediate family. A happy one because the were all good to what was left of me at that bad time. The boys kept my mind on my work; the girls kept kind attentions and flowers all through the house. While they did make me feel less lonely, they only made me feel all the more need of  'the woman in my life' in these several pre-Olgivanna years....I look back upon that period of my life at Taliesin as a quiet prelude before the storm. The outside storm broke when Olgivanna appeared on the scene, which she did some time before they had all left, two of them going back home (their terms were up) and one to the West Coast to 'jobs.'...All are building reputations for themselves in, respectively, Switzerland, Japan, and California." (Frank Lloyd Wright Collected Writings, Volume 4, p. 196).
Neutra certainly saw Moser's photos of Schindler's Kings Road House and knew what he was getting into in terms of living arrangements. He also would have seen Kameki's photos of the Freeman and Storer Houses while still at Taliesin. While compiling Wright's monograph of recent Southern California work he would have been privy to all the renderings, plans, and construction photos for same and would have been familiar with some of Schindler's work from photos and stories from the Mosers and Tsuchiuras.

While working at Taliesin in late 1924 and sitting at lunch opposite Wright, Neutra, 
"... opened a letter [from Ralph Fletcher Seymour], and inside was a topaz stickpin, sent to me with an appreciative and hopeful letter. It told me that I was worthy to have the pin which Sullivan had worn in better days and which his friends had now redeemed from the pawn shop. They thought I deserved it for my enthusiasm and friendliness to the old master. Glowing, I, who was nobody, rushed around the table to Mr. Wright. "Do you recognize it?" He shook his head, and I gave him the letter. It was a mistake. He read and silently gave me back these tokens. He seemed sad. The necktie pin I have never worn. It is in a bank safe." (Life & Shape, p. 185). (Author's note: See also my "R. M. Schindler, Richard Neutra and Louis Sullivan's 'Kindergarten Chats'"). (Author's note: Lewis Mumford reviewed Sullivan's Autobiography of an Idea in the June 25, 1924 issue of The Nation. It is not known whether Wright was aware of this at the time or if he shared it with his Taliesin assistants if he was aware of it.)
FLW and Richard Neutra at Taliesin, 1924.

"Thanks for the insight, Mr. Patton – your coverage of the Strong Automobile Objective provides background and context for a current art/architecture exhibit in Los Angeles as well, not just for the Guggenheim exhibit. Two pencil studies for the Strong project, by Richard Neutra in December, 1924 (while Wright was in California — ), are included in the extensive display of renderings, travel sketches, and portraits comprising “Richard Neutra, Architect: Sketches and Drawings,” in the Getty Gallery, Los Angeles Central Library, through Sept. 6. Delighted to have the additional info on this unique “car-culture” project — !"

Drawing techniques in both plans seem to reflect the hand of Richard Neutra (1892-1970), who worked with Wright at Taliesin from August 1924 to February 1925.

Richard Neutra: Guida Bio-Bibliografica edited by Corrado Reina, Alinea, Firenze, 1997. Cover, Progetto di stazione automobilistica, drawn by Richard Neutra, Taliesin, 1925.

Rendering of an Auto Excursion Establishment, under the direction of Frank Lloyd Wright, unbuilt. Richard Neutra, architect, 1924-5. From Richard Neutra: Buildings and Projects edited by W, Boesiger, architect, editions Girsberger, Zurich, 1950, p. 193. 

Wright in Los Angeles between Sept. 1 and Oct. 14. Wright visited the A. M. Johnson site in Death Valley in December 1923 and back to West Coast. to follow-up on the textile block houses. Brings the Tsuchiuras, Mosers, Feller back to Taliesin and leaves Lloyd behind to finish the Freeman and Ennis Houses, etc.

Aerial perspective and floor plans, Albert Johnson Desert Compound, Grapevine Canyon , California, ca. 1924. Frank Lloyd Wright, architect. Perhaps delineated by Richard Neutra, Taliesin, 1924-5.

Neutra wrote to Dione's mother after she left Taliesin, while working on Albert Johnson's floor plan. (Promise and Fulfillment, p. 130)

Taliesin's draftsmen were kept busy working on Albert Johnson's National Life Insurance building, a desert guest house for Johnson, and the Nakoma Country Club in Madison, WI, all unbuilt.

Frank Lloyd Wright Quarterly cover featuring the Albert M. Johnson National Life Insurance Co, Chicago, 1924 (project). Frank Lloyd Wright, architect. 

Albert M. Johnson National Life Insurance Co, Chicago, 1924 (project). Frank Lloyd Wright, architect. From Pfeiffer, p. 105).

The Autobiography of an Idea by Louis Sullivan, Press of the American Institute of Architects, New York, 1924. Foreword by Claude Bragdon. Image courtesy of Bookworks.

Kindergarten Chats by Louis Sullivan, Scarab Fraternity Press, 1934.  Edited by Claude Bragdon.

Louis Sullivan, 1924. Drawn by Charles Morgan (see below) who was hired by Wright to assist in delineating various perspectives for Albert Johnson's the National Life Insurance Building thus possibly would have been known by Neutra.

Promotional ad for Charles Morgan, AIA. From the Frank Lloyd Wright Library. (Author's note: Neutra likely saw his work on display at the Art Institute of Chicago in February 1925 at the Chicago Architectural Exhibition League, 2nd Annual Exhibition).

H. P. Berlage wrote to Wright on September 16, 1924 telling him of Mendelsohn's upcoming visit to Taliesin. Likely Wijdeveld wrote at the same time proposing the seven issue run of Wendingen issues. This is likely when the industrious Neutra broached the idea of de Fries doing a monograph on his life's work to Wright. (Wendingen: Journal for the Arts by Martijn F. Le Coultre, Princeton Architectural Press, 2001, p. 169 and note 107, p. 266). 

From left: Kameki and Nobuku Tschiuara, Sylva Moser, Will Smith, Frank Lloyd Wright, Erich Mendelsohn and Richard Neutra. Photo likely by Werner Moser or Dione Neutra. From Pfeiffer, p. 111.

Erich Mendelsohn: Structures and Sketches, Wasmuth, Berlin, 1924. Translation by Herman George Scheffauer. Includes work by Neutra including Einstein Tower, Mossehaus, and the Haifa Business Center (project).

Although translator and critic Herman George Scheffauer pressed Mendelsohn to lecture in America as early as 1920, he hesitated until in 1923 before finally accepting an invitation from the Dutch association Architectura et Amicitia whom Mendelsohn's by then associates H. P. Berlage and Wendingen editor H. Th. Wijdeveld were affiliated. 

Wasmuths Monatshefte fur Baukunst, January/February 1924 includes the above identical Mendelsohn portfolio "Bauten und Skizzen" with original German text.
"The first book published by Erich Mendelsohn, also a summary of his architectural work until the end of 1923. The book is identical to the booklet from the "Wasmuths Monatshefte für Baukunst" 1/2 (January/February) 1924 dedicated to Mendelsohn. The hardcover edition was published by Wasmuth Berlin in German and English and translated by Herman George Scheffauer." 
Mendelsohn had met with  Scheffauer on July 4, 1922 regarding publications in England and America where they perhaps discussed publication of the Einstein Tower and/or the above book. Mendelsohn wrote to his wife Luise that "Neutra was present at the discussion with Scheffauer and behaved irreproachably." It was seemingly apparent that Neutra had already earned his wings, so to speak, when it came to dealing with issues of publicity. (Eric Mendelsohn: Letters of an Architect edited by Oskar Beyer, Abelard-Shuman, London, 1967, pp. 56-57). (Author's note: Mendelsohn's Structures and Sketches translated by Scheffauer contained work by Neutra including Einstein Tower on which he did the landscaping,  Berliner Tageblatt (Mossehaus), and the award-winning Haifa Business Center design competition (project). Imagine Neutra's surprise upon seeing this book in print for the first time during Mendelsohn's visit to Taliesin.). Author's note: Scheffauer had translated an article which included four Mendelsohn sketches which appeared in the March 1921 issue of American periodical The Dial (see below) which was forwarded to Neutra by Frances Toplitz, originally attracting him to seek out Mendelsohn's employ. In Hines, p. 32).

(Scheffauer, Herman George, "Dynamic Architecture,"and Mendelsohn, Erich, "Four Architectural Drawings," The Dial, March 1921, pp. 325-27). Author's note: Lewis Mumford, discussed elsewhere herein, was associate editor of The Dial in 1919-20.).

(Author's note: On March 12, 1921 Schindler wrote to Neutra regarding publication problems with Sullivan's Kindergarten Chats. He also was likely the first to bring Mendelsohn to Neutra's attention. He unwittingly wrote of seeing the above article, 
"I have just seen some projects by Erich Mendelsohn in an American magazine. I can hardly believe that this is an "architect" - he seems to hang on to the old belief in "constructive form" in his expression of concrete - and to be a sculptor. His abstract black-and-white presentation without "environment" is characteristic of the "non-architect" - but it may also be the result of lack of real jobs."
He favorably compared Wright's design style to Mendelsohn's and presciently continued with an inaccurate description of Walter Burley Griffin whom Neutra was to meet while at Taliesin over the 1924 Christmas Holidays. (After meeting Griffin in 1924 Neutra compared his patented "Knit-Lock" building system with Frank Lloyd Wright's cement block system in his 1927 book Wie Baut Amerika?). Schindler closed by stating how busy he was on Olive Hill and encouraging Neutra to move to California, "There is enough building here."(Vienna to Los Angeles: Two Journeys by Esther McCoy, RMS letter to RJN, March 12, 1921, p. 131).

Neutra first mentioned meeting Mendelsohn and starting to work for him to Dione in an October 1921 letter.). (Promise and Fulfillment, p. 49).

Kameki and Nobu Tsuchiura, Sylva and  Werner Moser, Frank Lloyd Wright, Erich Mendelsohn and Richard Neutra. Photo perhaps by Dione Neutra.

Neutra's former employer Erich Mendelsohn visited Taliesin in early November of 1924. He was on a tour of the United States taking photographs for a book he was planning to publish on America (see below). He wrote a couple articles on Wright and his work during the trip which were published after his return to Germany. (Mendelson, Eric, "Besuch bei Wright," Baukunst, vol. 2, no. 1, 1926, p.56. "Frank Lloyd Wright," in Hendricus Th. Wijdeveld's Wendingen, and The Life Work of the American Architect Frank Lloyd Wright, C. A. Mees, Sandpoort, 1925, pp. 96-100; reprinted in Wasmuth's Monatshefte, 1926, pp. 244-246.).

In her oral history To Tell the Truth, Dione Neutra poignantly recalled the skillful translating her husband performed for Mendelsohn's historic visit, 
"I remember one evening where we all sat around a fireplace, and there was no other light in the room but just the fireplace. And Mr. Neutra was the translator, and Frank Lloyd Wright was very invective about German modern architecture, and Mr. Mendelsohn was very critical of American architecture. Mr. Neura translated in a way that he only translated the agreeable things. So they remained good friends, and we - Mr. and Mrs. Moser, you know, who understood German - we could just hardly contain ourselves. And Mr. Neutra, with a kind of diabolical smile - I could still see the whites of his eyes, you know, and the reflection of the flames playing over his face - He said later on he had a splitting headache, but he was so quick on the trigger, you know, that neither man noticed what was happening." (To Tell the Truth, p. 98).
Sketch by Mendelsohn for Frank Lloyd Wright, dated November 2-3, 1924. From Erich Mendelsohn, Architect, 1887-1953, edited by Regina Stephan, Monacelli Press, New York, 1999, p. 67.

Erich Mendelsohn, Frank Lloyd Wright and Richard Neutra at Taliesin, November 1924. Ibid., p. 66.

Taliesin drafting room, 1924. From left, Wright, Kameki Tuschiura, Richard Neutra, Werner Moser, Nobu Tsuchiura. From The Heroic Years, p. 110.

On November 30th Wright met Olgivanna at an opera performance in Chicago. She visited Taliesin in December, a visit remembered by Dione Neutra in her oral history, 
"Anyway, while we were at Frank Lloyd Wright's, his present wife, Olgivanna, came to visit. She was still married to a Yugoslav architect. I sang and played the Erlkonig, by Schubert, and she danced in front of the fireplace. It was very nice. We all sat around the fireplace, and she danced, and that was very impressive." (To Tell the Truth, p. 96).
While working at Taliesin in late 1924 and sitting at lunch opposite Wright, Neutra, 
"... opened a letter [from mutual Schindler-Sullivan friend Ralph Fletcher Seymour], and inside was a topaz stickpin, sent to me with an appreciative and hopeful letter. It told me that I was worthy to have the pin which Sullivan had worn in better days and which his friends had now redeemed from the pawn shop. They thought I deserved it for my enthusiasm and friendliness to the old master. Glowing, I, who was nobody, rushed around the table to Mr. Wright. "Do you recognize it?" He shook his head, and I gave him the letter. It was a mistake. He read and silently gave me back these tokens. He seemed sad. The necktie pin I have never worn. It is in a bank safe." (Life & Shape, p. 185). (Excerpted from my "R. M. Schindler, Richard Neutra and Louis Sullivan's Kindergarten Chats").
Wright's design for Albert Johnson House, Death Valley. Perhaps delineated by Richard Neutra, Taliesin, 1924. (From Cheap and Thin, p. 52).

In December Schindler encouraged Neutra to move to California writing, 
"Do you have a clear picture of the West, or is it , as it is for so many, a nostalgic urge? In any case, here you can make a living as well as in Chicago and, for a foreigner there are better prospects for a future and an agreeable way of life. I would be very pleased to receive you here and help you over the initial difficulties, as far as it is in my power. We shall not starve." (P&F, p. 130).
Walter Burley Griffin and Marion Mahony Griffin at Castle Crag, Sydney, June 27, 1930. From Wikipedia.

During December 1924 and January 1925, erstwhile Wright employees Walter Burley Griffin and wife Marion Mahony visited Taliesin and mutual friend and former business partner Barry Byrne in Chicago and reunited with Lloyd Wright in Los Angeles. While in Los Angeles Griffin undoubtedly inspected Wright's textile block houses with Lloyd perhaps to compare Wright's methodology with his "Knitlock" process. At this time Neutra learned of Griffin's patented "Knitlock" system and obtained materials he later used to compare with Wright's textile block system in Wie Baut Amerika? (see below). (On Frank Lloyd Wright's Concrete Adobe by Donald Leslie Johnson, Ashgate, 2013, pp. 75-94). (Author's note: Barry Byrne also acted as tour guide for Mendelsohn while he was in Chicago in November of 1924.) (For Byrne's time in Los Angeles with John and Lloyd Wright see also my "Irving Gill, Homer Laughlin and the Beginnings of ModernArchitecture in Los Angeles, Part II, 1911-1916").

(Wie Baut Amerika? by Richard Neutra, Julius Hoffmann, Stuttgart, 1927, pp. 58-59).  

In Dione Neutra's Oral History, she states that Die Baugilde editor de Fries "wanted to devote a whole  ["issue" sic] on Wright and Richard compiled the whole thing and that he helped on a big issue of Wendingen. (To Tell the Truth Oral History Transcript of Dione Neutra, p. 97). 

In the original manuscript of Promise and Fulfillment she also included a telling letter from Richard to Heinrich de Fries which clearly describes his proud involvement in preparing both the Wendingen issues as well as de Fries's monograph. 
"Dear Friend 
... Mr. Wright just now wrote, upon my request, an open letter to his "European Colleagues." It is a perfect criticism of the last progresses in architectural activities in Europe. I am busy to translate it. At the same time I prepared a great publication of Mr. Wright's work. It will appear in Berlin; another part of it in Amsterdam. The Americans will be surprised at the boom in Wright appreciation and the new Wright fashion in Europe. I am glad to participate in the way in the popularization of genius." (Promise and Fulfillment [original manuscript, Dione Neutra Archive, California Polytechnic State University, Pomona])."
The letter to "European Colleagues" referred to appeared both in Wendingen under the title "To My European Co-workers" and de Fries, in slightly altered title "An die Europaischen Kollegen."
"...Wright has decided to express himself also verbally in this new publication. As he does not speak German, he has asked me to translate his ideas, which he expressed in occasional conversations with me. My attempts to reproduce them as clearly as possible in the restricted time at my disposal, puts me onto a linguistic plane I am not familiar with and in any case I shall have to ask the readers’ pardon where I missed to reproduce Wright’s rich vocabulary and may appear harsh or unclear.)" (Cheap and Thin, p. 69).
Heinrich de Fries, editor of Die Baugilde and below book publisher. No date, photographer unknown.

Apparently shortly after Mendelsohn departed from Taliesin, Neutra sent the following letter to de Fries which clearly illustrates his publishing acumen, perhaps honed by his time with Mendesohn and his four years of trying to find a German publisher for Louis Sullivan's Kindergarten Chats(For much more on this se my "R. M. Schindler, Richard Neutra and Louis Sullivan's Kindergarten Chats").
"Dear Mr. de Fries: 
Just now I have sent you a cablegram: “preparing material for December 1.” Of course, I do not know whether I can prevail on Mr. Wright to keep this deadline. He happened to be in Chicago when I took the message of your cable over the phone. I would be very happy if you could publish the newest projects because I am convinced that you could accomplish something worthwhile with regard to the architectural development in Germany, despite all digressions of this wide-ranging man. I told him about you and that you, as publisher and editor, would do your best. He would like to have his most beautiful drawings reproduced in color. 
At this occasion I also would like to let you know that Wijdeveld wants to persuade Wright to agree to a large publication in Wendingen. Just today he sent a very well-prepared layout of 180 pages. It would be a publication double the size of his magazine. Mendelsohn’s visit here has been announced to plead for this Dutch publication. It is supposed to portray rather the historical development of Wright’s work. 
I proposed to make arrangements with you, thinking of a publication in three parts that would deal with the consecutive showing of his latest designs, presently on our drawing boards, a skyscraper project for Chicago. Naturally, you will have to decide how you want to proceed. I do not want to criticize Wijdeveld, whom I know personally and who was always very kind to me, but it seems to me that such a publication would surely be a credit to you. My idea was that you yourself could function as the publisher and use the other magazines by providing them with articles that prepare to announce your publication. I could help you as far as it is in my power. I want to tell you, by the way, that you may occasionally have to be very patient with Mr. Wright, as outer and inner circumstances very often deflect his attention. As long as I am in Spring Green (this hinges on family matters), I am prepared to pledge my support.... 
Richard Neutra" (Promise and Fulfillment [original manuscript, Dione Neutra Archive, California Polytechnic State University). (Cheap and Thin: Neutra and Frank Lloyd Wright by Raymond Neutra, Amazon Kindle, p. 68. Author's note: This letter demonstrates the subtlety that Neutra was using to pressure de Fries to scoop Wijdeveld and his Werndingen. The end result was that Wendingen was published first but de Fries was the first to publish Wright's renderings in color.).
Heinrich de Fries was one of the most prolific German architectural critics of the 1920s. As a publisher of various magazines (including Die Baugilde) and author and editor of several books (including the above) de Fries was committed to the modern, but turned against their rationalist orientation. As a determined individualist, he instead propagated the organic architectural conception of  Frank Lloyd Wright. Neutra had published an article in de Fries's Die Baugilde while working for Holabird & Roche which included many photos of Chicago skyscrapers and construction projects. He also discussed the Tribune Tower structural system and expressed his admiration for H. I. Burt's role in bringing to fruition the technology of the skyscraper. This also served as much of the basis for Neutra's first book, Wie Baut Amerika?, which included much on his Chicago work for Holabird & Roche on the Palmer House Hotel besides Wright's Storer House in Los Angeles and Schindler's Pueblo Ribera project. Thus it was perhaps Neutra's idea to beat his former employer Mendelsohn to press with de Fries's book on Wright. (Neutra, Richard, "Die altesten Hochhauser und der jungste Turm," Die Baugilde, 1924, pp. 495-507, edited by H. de Fries. Also cited in The Chicago Tribune Tower Competition by Katherine Solomonson, p. 256.).

Frank Lloyd Wright: Aus Dem Lebensewerke Eines Architekten by Henreich De Fries, Verlag Ernst Pollak, Berlin, 1926.

One of Neutra's earliest publishing experiences came while he was working for Wright at Taliesin in 1924-5. He helped Wright compile and publish the above book after he and Wright learned in 
around October of Mendelsohn's impending visit armed with letters of introduction from Wright's old friends H. P. Berlage and H. Th. Wijdeveld. They had seemingly recruited Mendelsohn to obtain Wright's collaboration on some future issues of Wijdeveld's publication Wendingen.

While at Taliesin in early November Mendelsohn would have shared his plans to also publish his first book Amerika, basically a photo book of his travels to New York, Buffalo, Detroit and Chicago. Wright shrewdly took advantage of Kameki and Nobu Tsuchiura, the Mosers and Neutra to compile a book on his recent California work on which the Tschiuras, Will Smith, Lloyd and the elder Wright had worked upon before most of the group moved back to Taliesin in early 1924. This also provided Neutra the unique opportunity to learn first hand of Wright's Southern California work and obtain from the Tsuchiuras and Mosers news of Schindler, who provided some limited design help. Sylva and Werner Moser joined the Taliesin group after a short visit in Southern California visiting Wright's atelier and the Schindlers (see Kings Road photos elsewhere herein).

Inspired by Mendelsohn's plans to capitalize on the "Americanism" rampant in Germany at the time, Wright, Neutra, Moser and Tsuchiura threw together by January a compilation of Wright's work after Mendelsohn's November departure. Besides writing an article describing Wright's textile block system, Neutra translated the rest of the book into German before he left to join Schindler in Los Angeles. Being present when this book and the Wendingen material was compiled and made ready for the publisher taught Neutra a great lesson in the value of maintaining his editorial connections and publicity. (Scenes of the World to Come: European Architecture and the American Challenge, 1893-1960 by Jean-Louis Cohen, Flammarion, 1995, p. 85). (Dione at Taliesin to her mother in Germany, January 1925, Promise and Fulfillment, p. 131).
"The following is noted about the structure and content of this {above] book: 
The first part up to page 28 contains the older work of the architect Wright, also the essay on the matter of architecture "The Third Dimension" belongs here. They follow in imprecise order the work of the interim period, concluding with the construction of the Imperial Hotel in Tokyo on pages 39 to 42. With the essay of the architect Wright: "To the European Colleagues" on page 43 begins the newer epoch, the rest of the book to page 69, and to all of them include color renderings. Some of the projects reproduced herein are now completed and another is in progress. In addition, some earlier versions of Wright follow about his worldview in relation to building design and an essay by the famous Dutch architect Berlage from 1912. The present book does not intend to be an emphatic, informative introduction of the reader into the essential parts of the life's work of the architect Wright. A complete and chronological ordered overview of his entire artistic achievement is not yet available and can actually only be provided by the architect Wright himself. But this artist's work seems far from finished, especially given the color renderings that convincingly prove the work of the last epoch in a highly vivid way." (de Fries, p.79). Translation by Internet Archive. (Author's note: A 1924 German reprint of the Wasmuth portfolio was published as was a 1925 compilation of seven consecutive issues of Wendingen as discussed elsewhere herein.).
Likely Neutra's June 1924 publication of an article on the skyscrapers of Chicago and the construction of the Tribune Tower in de Fries's Die Baugilde provided the publication connection. Neutra's personal contribution to Wright's 1926 de Fries monograph (see below) was published by itself as an article subscribing Wright's concrete block system in the February 1925 issue of Die Baugilde.

"Illustration of Cement Block Construction of architect Frank Lloyd Wright" from de Fries, p. 63. (Author's note: Richard Neutra also included Walter Burley Griffin's patented "Knitlock" system to illustrate residential building techniques on pp. 58-59 of Wie Baut Amerika? (see elsewhere herein).

Rebori, A. N., "Frank Lloyd Wright's Textile Block Slab Construction," Architectural Record, December 1927, pp. 449-456. (Author's note: Neutra's drawing and many other illustrations from the de Fries monograph were confusingly reused with Wright's complicity in the above Architectural Record article by associate editor and Wright friend A. N. Rebori which is actually written as a review of the combined Wendingen issues published by Mees in 1925 as discussed elsewhere herein.).
"Frank Lloyd Wright uses reinforced cement block walls in his buildings of the last 3 years in such a way that a continuous unit of the material, the scale, of the constructive system, a unity of exterior and interior is accomplished.   
The outer and inner walls of the buildings are depending on their static and warm technical task as an executed single and double-shell. In the latter case, the distance the two shells and thus the width of the insulating air space between them are arbitrarily accepted. The trays introduce cross-reinforced concrete slabs. 
The foundation banquette, executed in concrete of a mixture 1: 3: 4, are about 10 cm held stronger than the respective rising walls. The element of these walls is to the prefabricated concrete block. 
One part of cement with four parts of sand, mechanically mixed in the construction site and in cast aluminum molds of 400: 400: 87.5 mm gives the concrete block, which at its four narrow sides has grooves for receiving the reinforcement. The pictures show the block in front and rear view and give an idea how he added to the walls. After inserting the 6 mm thick ribbed iron bars of square cross section, the joints and grooves are poured with a cement mortar, mixture 1: 3, likewise, the anchor hooks, which are the reinforcement of the outer and the inner wall shell holding together, covered with mortar. A continuous plate closes the sun designed wall upwards and provides the support for the ceiling beams. 
In further development of the system will be made of the same block material with the same crosswise reinforcement also made blankets. Special corner blocks make this possible moving the reinforcement around the building corners. The same blocks may be used for the production of heavily loaded, supporting pillars. Retaining walls are made of constructed normal blocks and get on their inside rib reinforcements in intervals of 2.40 m. Damming of all walls, if useful anywhere, does not prove difficult. In buildings with this characteristic, the reinforcing grooves were inclined at a shaped angle.
The single block main gets a typical pattern. The same in this way moderately over significant areas of continuous ornamentation, here a by-product of construction that can previously be found in earlier designs by Mr. Wright, at the Coonley House and at the Midway Garden dance halls. Occasionally the blocks are in their pattern perforated to let light into the building interior. All inner walls show how the typical structure and ornamentation of the block elements; no part is plastered over. In bathrooms and kitchens, the wedge-shaped joints (see above) filled with dark tesserae, which are pressed in cement mortar and to emphasize the constructive square division of the walls in color, all the surfaces of these rooms are smooth and flush. 
Stairways and garden paths, which intimately connect the property with the building, are filled with blocks and paved. The work plans of the buildings described here are, floor plans like elevations, inscribed in square nets. As a unit is a square of 120 cm side length underlaid, which corresponds to the format of three cement blocks in each direction. The idea of ​​using such a grid in the elaboration has changed proved conducive to the construction of the Imperial Hotel in Tokyo. Putting in writing the payoff method in these work plans is largely unnecessary." 
RICHARD NEUTRA (de Fries, p. 64). Translation by Internet Archive and author.
"The editor owes the entire newer material of this book to the friendly consideration of the architect Wright himself, and the understanding by the honorable architects Werner Moser and Dipl.-Ing. Richard Neutra in the friendliest way possible. Both employees of the architect Wright should be particularly proud at this point. I would like to thank, in particular Mr Neutra, who translated the text of the essay: "To the Euro-German Colleagues," as well as the text on cement block construction which he himself contributed some explanations." (de Fries, p. 78. Translation by Internet Archive. Author's note: de Fries also edited the architectural journal Die Baugilde and had previously published Neutra's "Die altesten Hochhauser und der jungste Turm" describing the construction of Chicago's Tribune Tower in his June 1924 issue. He also published Neutra's "Eine Bauweise in bewehrtem Beton an Neubauten von Frank Lloyd Wright" in his February 1925 issue as Neutra was leaving for Los Angeles to join Schindler. In March of 1925 De Fries also asked Moser for Schindler's contact information after seeing Moser's photos of Schindler's Pueblo Ribera in La Jolla at his father Karl's. (Courtesy March 5, 1925 letter from Moser to Schindler from the Schindler Collection at UC-Santa Barbara graciously translated by Gabrielle Mary Ann Schicketanz at studioschicketanz.com).
 Bibliography of Wright articles published in Europe:
"So far, the following publications have been published in Germany and its neighboring states through which architect Frank Lloyd Wright has became known: 
Executed buildings and designs by Frank Lloyd Wright, Verlag Ernst Wasmuth, Berlin 1910. In 2 folders. Text by the architect himself. - Out of print. 
Frank Lloyd Wright: Executed buildings, publishing house Ernst Wasmuth, Berlin 1911. Special Issue. Text by C. R. Ashbee-London. - Out of print.  
Schweizerische Bauzeitung, September 14, 21, 28, 1912. Publisher and publisher A. Jegher-Zurich. Text by H. P. Berlage-Amsterdam. 
Wendingen, Dutch journal of architecture. Publisher H. Th. Wijdeveld, Amsterdam. 1921, Issue 11. Text by H. P. Berlage-Amsterdam. 
Die Baugilde, publisher H. de Fries-Berlin, publisher Stollberg & Co, booklets of the vintage 1925. Text from the publisher. - Out of print. (Author's note: Neutra's article on Wright's concrete blocks was published in the February 1925 issue of de Fries's Die Baugilde). 
Das Werk, "Frank Lloyd Wright und Amerikanische Architektur," by Werner Moser. Publisher Gebr, Fretz A.-G., Zurich. Issue 5, May 1925, pp. 129-142. (Author's note: In the same issue Neutra published "Architekten und Bauwesen in Chicago," pp. 143-144. The journal was founded in 1914 under the title The Work of the Federation of Swiss Architects and the Swiss Werkbund.).
Baukunst, Publisher Bernhard Borst-Munich. Publisher and editor Hermann Sörgel. Book 2. Texts by Barry Byrne (Chicago) and Sörgel. 
At present, a series of seven Wendingen issues about Wright appear in Dutch Language in 1925-1926." (March 1926 issue included Mendelsohn's "Frank Lloyd Wright" and Louis Sullivan's "Concerning the Imperial Hotel."). (de Fries, p. 80. Translation by Internet Archive somewhat modified by author.). 
Ibid., title page.

Kameki Tsuchiura, Richard Neutra and Frank Lloyd Wright at Taliesin ca. 1925. Ibid., p. 8. Photo by Werner Moser.

Neutra, Richard, "A Reinforced Concrete Construction Method in New Buildings by Frank Lloyd Wright," Ibid., p. 64. Previously published in Die Baugilde, February 1925 edited by Heinrich de Fries.

Neutra was paid for translating Wright's essay "To the European Colleagues" for de Fries's monograph. Werner Moser perhaps did some of the translation for the seven issues of Wendingen published in 1925-6. Neutra was also involved with the planning and compiling of the Wendingen series before he left for California. Thus he was again exposed to the importance of publishing to promoting one's career and thoroughly educated in the complete work of Wright. (Letter from Dione Neutra at Taliesin to her mother in Germany, January 1925, Promise and Fulfillment, p. 131. See also de Fries p. ).

In a January 1925 letter to his Quaker friend, Mrs. Toplitz, Neutra commented on his assistance to
Wright with regard to these publications, mostly of Wright's angular and fanciful unbuilt works
of the early 1920's. These were works whose creative genius he recognized even though he only
chose to adopt and adapt the strategies of Wrights earlier Prairie House phase:

"An Die Europaischen Kollegen," by Frank Lloyd Wright dated January 3, 1925, translated by Richard Neutra. From de Fries, pp. 43-44. See also the translation by Internet Archive.
Dear Friend,
 ...Mr. Wright just now (January 3, 1925) wrote, upon my request, an open letter to his “European Colleagues” (see above). It is a perfect criticism of the last progresses in architectural activities in Europe. I am busy to translate it. At the same time I prepared a great publication of Mr. Wright’s work. It will appear in Berlin (de Fries); another part of it in Amsterdam (Wendingen). The Americans will be surprised about the boom in Wright appreciation and the new Wright Fashion in Europe. I am glad to participate in this way in the popularization of that genius. (Promise and Fulfillment original manuscript, Dione Neutra Archive, California Polytechnic State University). (Cheap and Thin: Neutra and Frank Lloyd Wright, by Raymond Neutra, Amazon Kindle, p. 71). (Author's note: This could not have been better publicity training for Neutra, building upon what he had already learned while employed by Mendelsohn. In a review of the de Fries monograph in the December 12, 1926 issue of the Frankfurter Zeitung, Gete Dexel, wife of art critic Walter Dexel, stated that in Wright's open letter "To his European Co-Workers," that de Fries was over-enthusiastic, that the Tahoe and Doheny projects were designed for an elite rich class, and Wright was aligned with class interests that made his work strongly anti-social." From Alofsin, Anthony, "Frank Lloyd Wright and Modernism" in Frank Lloyd Wright, Architect edited by Terence Riley, Museum of Modern Art, 1994, note 45, p. 56.). 
All the business surrounding the production of the de Fries book again piqued Wright's interest in the Dutch magazine Wendingen. Wright began to send his friend the publisher H. Th.Wijdeveld more drawings and photographs for future issues. 

Obviously aware of the Dutch-German competition to publish his work, Wright took full advantage of the situation by dividing his recent projects between Wijdeveld and de Fries, even obtaining color illustrations from the latter. The publications were significant in furthering Wright's influence in Europe and gave Wright an avenue for communicating his aesthetic ideals. (Ibid.).

On January 7th, about a month before Neutra left for California, Wright wrote to his friend Wijdeveld, 
"My dear Herr Wijdeveld, 
I am just sending the long proposed material. I started to make suggestions in the 'dummy' Wendingen, but soon gave it up leaving it all to you. I should like a very dignified cover - featuring the red square perhaps.. .I think you will find some material you will prefer to use instead of some of the Chicago houses like the Baldwin and Bach, etc. etc. I hope the work may be expedited and the drawings promptly returned. I can't tell you how much I dislike to let them go out of the country. They will be needed here early in February for an exhibition at the Chicago Art Institute which may continue among European countries....I feel that this Wendingen publication can not fail among European countries....My sincerest regards to you. I enjoyed Eric Mendelsohn's visit very much. Thank you for sending him." (Author's note: The exhibition Wright was referring to was the Chicago Architectural Exhibition League, 2nd Annual Exhibition at the Art Institute from February 2nd - March 2nd which the Neutras likely took in on their way to Los Angeles from Taliesin. Wright's work was not included in the show. Projects of interest to Neutra would have included work by his old firm Holabird & Roche (Soldier Field and ads for the Palmer House in the exhibition catalogue), the Tribune Tower's Raymond Hood, Albert Kahn, George Maher, Bertram Goodhue, and the delineator he had recently collaborated with on Wright's National Life Insurance building, i.e., Charles Morgan (see discussion elsewhere herein)).
In a postscript Wright mentions the fate of the Midway Gardens. 
"I am sending a series of line drawings of the Midway Gardens which I would like to see reproduced across double pages - as the Gardens are to be destroyed before too long. And this will be a record of what they once were. The drawings are accurate and excellent. You have a wealth of material to choose from to make one of the most interesting of architectural publications. A sort of exhibit in itself. I have sent to De Fries in Berlin for reproductions in color - in two portfolio monographs - two recent projects, one at Los Angeles [Doheny Ranch] and one at Lake Tahoe - which could not possibly be got into Wendingen and are not executed, as I have promised him material he had anxiously awaited long since. I think Wendingen should be pushed so as not to be behind these things of De Fries, if possible. F. LL W." (Wright letter to Wijdeveld, January 7, 1925. The Heroic Years, p. 119).
The Life Work of Frank Lloyd Wright, Wendingen. Cover design by Wijdeveld and Wright.  (Part I published October 1925. Part VII published April 1926. 

The seven Wendingen issues on Wright were combined into one volume by C. A. Mees of Sandpoort, Holland (see below). This enraged Wijdeveld who was not consulted about the reprint. (Le Coultre, p. 169 and note 111, p. 266. Mendelsohn's contribution on Wright appeared on p. 96 and Mumford's on p. 65.).

Wright had apparently obtained a copy of Lewis Mumford's Sticks and Stones by the time of Mendelsohn's visit. He wrote an appreciative letter to the fledgling critic after reading what he had to briefly say about him and Sullivan. Wright seemingly read these pages to Mendelsohn via Neutra and advised him to look up Mumford on the way back to Germany. Mendelsohn took Wright's advice and shared his recent skyscraper photographs with Mumford. His photos made a strong impression causing Mumford to reward Mendelsohn with a copy of his book. Subsequent events illustrate that this turned out to be a great lesson in how architects should seek out and collaborate with critics (and editors and publishers) to promote their own careers.

Sticks and Stones by Lewis Mumford, Boni and Liveright, New York, 1924. Cover illustration "City of the Future" by Hugh Ferris. (Author's note: A full-page review "American Architecture the Expression of Our Culture" was published in the New York Times by Percy Hutchison on September 19, 1924, p. BR4. 

The visit and gift of the book by the fledgling critic impressed Mendelsohn to the point of him recommending to Wijdeveld that Mumford be commissioned to write one of the essays for Wright's seven-issue Wendingen series. (Eric Mendelsohn to Hendricus Wijdeveld, 18 February 1925, "Nederlanse Documentatie Centrum voor de Boukunst," Amsterdam also cited in Lewis Mumford & American Modernism by Robert Wojtowicz, Cambridge University Press, 1996, note 57, p. 179. Author's note: Wright purportedly sent Mumford a congratulatory letter upon the publication of Sticks and Stones indicating that it was perhaps shared among the people at Taliesin about the time of Mendelsohn's visit. Mendelsohn offered to Mumford to have it translated into German and published but Mumford's new colleague Walter Curt Behrendt ended up arranging translation and publication (see below). For more discussion of the friendships between Mendelsohn, Mumford and Behrendt see Wright on Exhibit by Kathryn Smith, pp. 42-43.). 

Vom Blockhaus zum Wolkenkratzer by Lewis Mumford, Bruno Cassier Verlag, Berlin, 1925. 

In turn, in September of 1925 Lewis Mumford referenced Sullivan, Wright and Mendelsohn in an article which appeared in the American Mercury in which he mentioned his first meeting with Mendelsohn, 
"The final comment on our genteel tradition was expressed by a German architect who showed me the snapshots he had taken on his travels about the country: except for a few grain elevators and warehouses, they were all photographs of the backs - the unornamented parts - of our buildings!" ("The Poison of Good Taste," American Mercury, September 1925, pp. 91-93).
Around the same time, Mumford befriended Die Form editor Walter Curt Behrendt on the latter's visit to New York in 1925 and used the connection to publish his article "Die Form in den Amerikanische Zivilisation" in the November 1925 issue alongside an article by Mendelsohn's promoter and translator Adolf Behne, "Der Siege der Farbe." Behrendt also arranged for the translation and German publication of Sticks and Stones in 1925 (see above). Mumford would go on to publish 4 other articles in Die Form through June 1930. Behrendt's's Die Form was the organ of the Deutscher Werkbund, thus a great connection for Neutra who published at least 13 articles in the journal beginning in 1929. (Mumford, Lewis, "Die Form in den Amerikanische Zivilisation," Die Form, November 1925, pp. 26-29 and  "Lewis Mumford: A Bibliography / B. Writings in Periodicals").

The Life Work of the American Architect Frank Lloyd Wright, C. A. Mees, Sandpoort, Holland, 1925. Combines the seven 1925-6 Wright issues of Wendingen.

Besides illustrating nearly fifty Wright projects, the above book compiling the seven consecutive Wright issues of Wendingen gathered the essays of Wijdeveld and Mendelsohn, Lewis Mumford (his first evaluation of Wright's work), Robert Mallet-Stevens, J. J. P. Oud, Dr. H. P. Berlage, Louis Sullivan and some of Wright's previously published "In the Cause of Architecture" essays.

After Mendelsohn  returned to Europe he published two articles on Wright, "Besuch bei Wright," Baukunst 2 (1926), 56 and "Frank Lloyd Wright," Wasmuths Monatshefte (1926), 244 which was also reprinted in Wendingen. (Ibid., note 48, p. 266).

Dione's book Promise and Fulfillment compiles much correspondence between her and her husband reflecting the apparent lack of trust of Mendelsohn by Richard. Likewise, in the fall of 1924, de Fries revealed to Neutra his frank opinion of Mendelsohn: 
"If one meets occasionally Mendelsohn the human being, one is always irritated anew by his superficiality and the relative shallowness of his character which has no real depth. One is perplexed by the autocratic gesture of a conceited genius. There is no doubt that Mendelsohn is a great talent, but the holy spark of genius somehow passed him like lightning. All these considerations lead me to believe that his present quite substantial fame will soon be a transient phenomenon. However, despite all this, he is nearly always interesting." (Heinrich de Fries to Richard Neutra, n.d. ca. fall of 1924, translation courtesy of Raymond Neutra also cited in Wright on Exhibit by Kathryn Smith, Princeton University Press, 2017, note 79, p. 252). (Also in Cheap and Thin by Raymond Neutra, Amazon Kindle, p. 70-71).
Amerika: Bilderbuch eines Architekten by Erich Mendelsohn, Rudolf Mosse, Berlin, 1926. (Author's note: Besides being published by Mendelsohn's (and Neutra's) 1923 client, this book went through numerous printings as well as a second edition in 1928.).
"The 77 b/w reproductions in photogravure were taken by the architect on his visit to the United States in 1924. Mendelsohn's goal was to convey a new vision of the contemporary city. In his foreword he points to the pros and cons of European Americanism, which he sees as a major opposition between civilization and culture. Photographs show the Brooklyn Bridge and Manhattan's skyline, the Equitable Trust Building, Trinity Church, Times Square, 5th Avenue, Madison Avenue, Wall Street, Broadway, Shelton Hotel, New York Harbor, Chicago's Federal Reserve Bank, Michigan Avenue, building of the Chicago Tribune, various Chicago street scenery, as well as architecture in Detroit and Buffalo. 15 photographs by the Danish architect Knud Lönberg-Holm, particularly those showing Detroit, are not credited to him, only in the later, expanded edition of 1928 was Lönberg-Holm given credit. Noteworthy that Mendelsohn's so-called 'photographic modernity' was often substantiated by pointing to those photographs in this book taken by Lönberg-Holm. El Lissitzky was so impressed with "Amerika" that he said the volume "thrills us like a dramatic film. Before our eyes move pictures that are absolutely unique. In order to understand some of the photographs you must lift the book over your head and rotate it."
Mendelsohn returned the favor by presenting Mumford a Christmas present of copy of Amerika. He wrote, 
"I am sending you my architect's picture album, Amerika. It is a year since my meeting with you, which I recall with great pleasure. In the meantime I have heard that your book, Sticks and Stones, as appeared in German and a friend has just written to tell me that you have mentioned my own work in the forward in the most friendly terms..." (Beyer, pp. 88-89).
Russland Europa Amerika: Ein Architektonischer Querschnitt by Erich Mendelsohn, Rudolf Mosse Buchverlag, Berlin, 1929. (Author's note: Mendelsohn presented a gift copy to Mumford in 1929. See Beyer, p. ).

The above work reviews and compares trends in the three arenas. It includes images by Mendelsohn, Adolf Behne, E. O. Hoppé, Lewis Mumford, Grabar, Lukomskij, Ludwig Hilberseimer, Seigfried Giedion, Hegemann, Kasweik and others.

Wie Baut Amerika? by Richard Neutra, Julius Hoffmann Verlag, Stuttgart, 1927. (Author's note: Neutra got the idea for his books from his time at Taliesin in 1924 when he worked on a book for his employer Frank Lloyd Wright and learned from Erich Mendelsohn of his plans to publish his book Amerika.

Wie Baut Amerika? was a conglomeration of Neutra's Rush City Reformed, his work on the Palmer house Hotel for Holabird & Roche, Schindler's Pueblo Ribera Court project in La Jolla, Wright's Storer House in Los Angeles (likely from pictures from the Tsuchiuras who worked on the house) During his 1930 world tour, the Tsuchiuras introduced Neutra to Japanese publishers and arranged lectures for him in Tokyo and showed him Wright's Imperial Hotel which they also worked on.

Hitchcock also reviewed Neutra's above book in his June Architectural Record column in which he placed Neutra at the forefront of modern design second only to Wright in the USA and compared Neutra favorably to Gropius, Mies van der Rohe, and Le Corbusier. Since Schindler's Pueblo Ribera project was prominently placed on the front cover and pp. 54-57 of Neutra's book, Hitchcock couldn't have helped noticing Schindler's work, thus the obvious conclusion was that it did not rigorously adhere to Hitchcock's definition of "International Style"for inclusion in the MoMA exhibition. In his December 1928 column Hitchcock stated "It is pleasant to note that the [Jardinette] apartments in Los Angeles by Neutra illustrated in Die Baugilde are quite as fine and as modern as any of this German work". (Author's note: Hitchcock considered Schindler more of a De Stilist, Mendelsohn an Expressionist, and Neutra a true International Stylist (see his 1929 Modern Architecture: Romanticism and Reintegration for example).

Pergola-Wading Pool, Olive Hill, R. M. Schindler, architect, Richard Neutra,landscape architect, 1925. Sweeney,  p. 53. (Author's note: Schindler made use of the construction materials left over from the Little Dipper project which was also included in the De Fries book.)

Ironically, one of the first projects Neutra worked on upon arriving at Kings Road in early March of 1925 was the Pergola and Wading Pool Schindler designed out of the remaining textile blocks from Wright's Little Dipper project intended to be the Little Dipper school and playground for Barnsdall's daughter. As mentioned earlier, due to Wright's inability to deliver in timely fashion, Barnsdall had halted all construction on the Little Dipper in late November of 1923. Neutra designed the landscaping plan which likely infuriated the until then friendly Lloyd Wright. Perhaps Leah Press Lovell happened to be working on Olive Hill at the time in the preschool under the leadership of Barnsdall's headmistress Helen Girvin. ("Culture for Children," Los Angeles Times, September 23, 1923, p., III-1). (Author's Note: Leah Press Lovell recalled consulting with Wright on school design.).

Wading Pool and Pergola, Olive Hill, 1925, R. M. Schindler, architect. From Kathryn Smith, p. 196.

Wading Pool and Pergola, Olive Hill, 1925. Richard Neutra, landscape architect. Ibid.


Internationale Architektur: Bauhaus Bucher 1 by Walter Gropius, second edition 1927 (originally published in 1925)..

The above 1927 second edition (originally released in 1925) included the addition of Neutra's Rush City Reformed skyscraper (see below) from his book Wie Baut Amerika?. 

Modern Architecture: Romanticism and Reintegration reprint by Henry-Russell Hitchcock, originally published in 1929.

An excerpt from Hitchcock's Architectural Record review of the 1927 Gropius re-release reads,
"The present second edition makes it again possible to obtain what is perhaps the finest epitome of modern architecture and provides for the inclusion of certain work that has been executed since the book first appeared." (Internationale Architektur. Bauhausbuchcr I. Second edition by Walter Gropius, Munich, 1928.  Review by Henry-Russell Hitchcock, Architectural Record, August 1929, p. 191).
Wie Baut Amerika? by Richard Neutra, Julius Hoffmann, Stuttgart, 1927. (Author's note: Neutra's book was notably reviewed in the February 1927 issue of Das Werk then edited by Joseph Gantner who would the next year take over editing duties at Das Neue Frankfurt and name Neutra its American correspondent. In the same issue, Wright's cement block system was also excerpted from the above book and featured in a separate article with Kameki Tsuchiura construction photos of  Wright's Storer House. Schindler's Pueblo Ribera project seen on the above cover was also excerpted from Neutra's book and featured in the April 1927 issue of Das Werk.). 
(Schindler either did not have the focus to collaborate on writing the above book or was more likely overwhelmed with his early 1920s architectural practice in Los Angeles, established a year after Neutra's original offer to collaborate on same in 1920 as discussed earlier above. It was Neutra who ended up taking over this project after moving in with the Schindlers at  Kings Road in 1925 and, in the process, utilizing many images that Schindler took. He reproduced Schindler's images of Pueblo Ribera Court in Wie baut Amerika? (see cover above for example. Seven other Schindler images, mostly of Frank Lloyd Wright buildings, appeared in Neutra's Amerika, a more extensively illustrated publication discussed later below. As was common at the time, these architectural images were uncredited.) ("The Architect's Eye: R. M. Schindler and His Photography" by Eric John Lutz, University of California, Santa Barbara, 2004, p.15).
Internationale Neue Baukunst by Ludwig Hilberseimer, Julius Hoffmann, Stuttgart, 1927.

Ibid., pp. 4-5.

Ludwig Hilberseimer's Internationale Neue Baukunst exhibited much collaboration with Neutra and Wright's Taliesin Class of 1924. The second book in Julius Hoffmann's new series behind Neutra's Wie Baut Amerika? (see back cover later below for example), the book featured Wright's Millard House, Neutra and Schindler's League of Nations competition entry, and projects by Mendelsohn and Werner Moser (see below). Taliesin was in good company as Hilberseimer also included work by himself and all his fellow 1927 Weissenhof Estate mates Walter Gropius, Le Corbusier, Mies van der Rohe, Peter Behrens, J.J.P. Oud, Bruno and Max Taut, Mart Stam, Adolf Schneck, Victor Bourgeois, Hans Poelzig, Richard Doecker, Adolf Rading, Josef Frank, and Hans Scharoun. Other notable architects whose work was included were Tony Garnier, El Lissitzky, Andre Lurcat, Robert Mallet-Stevens, Ernst May, Hannes Meyer, Auguste Perret, Gerrit Rietveld, A. Sartoris, L. C. van der Vlugt, and Jan Wils.

Also included on the top of the front cover was a house by Chase McArthur who Frank Lloyd Wright later assisted in the design and construction of the Arizona Biltmore Hotel in Scottsdale. The left of the front cover also featured the Van Nelle Factory commissioned by industrialist Cees Van der Leeuw who in 1930 loaned Neutra the money to build his VDL (van der Leeuw) Research House in Silverlake. Missing out on being included in the Weissenhof project, Neutra (and Moser after his return to Europe) seemingly made sure that Schindler, his former employer Mendelsohn and Werner Moser were all included in this book. (Author's note: After the Neutra's moved to Los Angeles, Schindler's work began to appear alongside Neutra's in European publications, demonstrating the latter's penchant for publicity and fame. Unfortunately, this still did not attract Hitchcock and Johnson to include the hard to typecast Schindler in their 1932 "International Style" exhibition at MoMA.).

Seemingly Neutra had befriended Hilberseimer when working with publisher Julius Hoffmann on Wie Baut Amerika? It is not difficult to imagine Neutra proposing this series to Hoffmann as a way of "catching up" to his European Weissenhof colleagues.

Millard House, Pasadena, Frank Lloyd Wright, architect. Ibid., p. 7. (Author's note: It was likely through Werner Moser's largess that this project was published in Hilberseimer's book.).

League of Nations competition entry, 1926,  Richard Neutra and R. M. Schindler, architects. Ibid., p. 9. (Author's note: The entry exhibits elements of Schindler's recently completed Lovell Beach House and Neutra's former employer Mendelsohn. Neutra took advantage of knowing that one of the judges for the competition would be none other than Karl Moser, his former Swiss professor and the father of his Taliesin mate Werner. Since Werner had also visited and corresponded with Schindler from Taliesin, chances seemed good that the duo might win a prize with their entry. The project won no prize but was exhibited without Schindler receiving credit due to a miscommunication by Dione Neutra's parents who were shepherding the design entry through the competition process. This publication was likely the first chance that Neutra had to correctly credit Schindler's role in the design.). (Sarnitz, August E., "Proportion and Beauty - the Lovell Beach House by Rudolph Michael Schindler, Newport Beach, 1922-1926," Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians, December 1986, p. 383).

Three projects by Erich Mendelsohn, architect, Ibid., p. 12-13.

Office Building for Chicago, Werner Moser, Zurich. Ibid., p. 39. (Author's note: This building (Wright's unbuilt skyscraper for Albert Johnsons National Life Insurance Co. discussed elsewhere herein) was also published in ABC, Beitrage Zum Bauen Redaktion in 1926. ABC was published by Moser's close friend editor Mart Stam with help from later Neutra collaborator El Lissitzky.).

Ibid., back cover.

Neutra and Schindler's League of Nations design was included in Hilberseimer's above Internationale Neue Baukunst on p. 9, thus Hitchcock would have certainly been knowledgeable of Schindler's and Neutra's joint work. Most of Hitchcock and Johnson's architects and style of interest were included in this volume thus this book must have been quite influential in the focusing the architectural selection and direction for MoMA's 1932 "Modern Architecture International Exhibition." Neutra's entry in the exhibition catalogue listed under his completed projects his reconstruction of the Berliner Tageblatt Building (Mossehaus) and Berlin Zehlendorf "Four Houses in a Group" projects while working with Mendelsohn. A photo of two of the Berlin houses was included in the catalogue and as well as his League of Nations project (with Schindler), Ring Plan School, Rush City Reformed, Model House in Vienna, Jardinette Apartments, and his career-making Lovell Health House.

Groszstadt Architektur by Ludwig Hilberseimer, 1927. Author's note: Includes two renderings of the Rush City Reformed railroad station.).

Further evidence of Neutra's involvement in planning this series was the inclusion of elements of his Rush City Reformed being included in his Wie Baut Amerika? (see below) to accompany city planning elements Hilberseimer included in Groszstadt Architektur (see above). 

"Rush City Reformed," by Richard Neutra, in Wie Baut Amerika?, 1927, p. 21.

Wie Baut Amerika?, 1927, p. 9.

Beton Als Gestalter by Jules Vischer and Ludwig Hilberseimer, Julius Hoffmann Verlag, Stuttgart, 1928. From Eric Chain Kline.

Hilberseimer's third book co-authored with Jules Vischer, was notable for being the first book to call attention to the work of Neutra's then landlord R. M. Schindler. Neutra's soon-to-be Health House client Philip Lovell and his Schindler-designed Newport Beach House was featured along with Neutra's Jardinette Apartments (see below).

R. M. Schindler's Lovell Beach House, Newport Beach. Ibid., pp. 18-19. Author's note: Book also contains Neutra's Jardinette Apartments.

Besides Hilberseimer's inclusion of the photo of the Weissenhof Estate introducing his book, further indication of Weissenhof's significant importance is indicated by the fact that essentially the same image was selected for the cover of Walter Curt Behrendt's The Victory of the New Building Style. The architecture in Hilberseimer's Internationale Neue Baukunst and above and below books appear to be what most influenced Henry-Russell Hitchcock and Philip Johnson in their choices of architects to include in their groundbreaking 1932 "International Style "exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art.

The Victory of the New Building Style by Walter Curt Behrendt, Wedekind, Stuttgart, 1927. Frank Lloyd Wright

Forming a relationship with its editor, Joseph Gantner, Richard Neutra became the American correspondent for Das Neue Frankfurt in 1928. This friendship would prove quite valuable to Neutra's career as Gantner would go on to become editor of the Swiss journal Das Werk and collaborate as "Neue Bauen in der Welt" series editor on the publication of Neutra's Amerika (as discussed later below). (Building Culture: Ernst May and New Frankfurt Initiative, 1926-1931 by Susan R. Henderson, Lang, New York, 2013, note 100, p. 444).

Frank Lloyd Wright by Henry-Russell Hitchcock, Cahiers d'Art, Paris, 1928. Lewis Mumford reviewed Hitchcock's book in the April 1929 issue of Architectural Record, pp.414-416.

About the time he was employed to write a column reviewing foreign periodicals and books for Lawrence Kocher's Architectural Record, Henry-Russell Hitchcock also published a short book on Wright's work published in Paris in 1928 (see above). Published by Cahiers D'Art, the book contained significant overlap of the early 1920s California work with the de Fries book of 1926. The then fledgling architectural critic/historian by then already had Wright, Mendelsohn, Neutra (and his then landlord Schindler). (Author's note: By this time a friend of both Wright and Hitchcock, had Lewis on his radar screen, mentioning all of them in his 1929 Modern Architecture: Romanticism and Reintegration and his International Style Architecture Since 1922 published in conjunction with his and Philip Johnson's Modern Architecture: International Exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in 1932. (Author's note: Hitchcock included his own book above with the Wendingen and de Fries volumes and, of course, the original Wasmuth portfolio when describing "Wright's Influence Abroad" in his 1940 article of the same title published in the December 1940 issue of Parnassus.).

Hollandische Architektur: Bauhausbucher 10 by J. J. P. Oud, Albert Langen Verlag, Munchen, 1926. (Author's note: Includes Oud's essay "The Influence of Frank Lloyd Wright on the Architecture of Europe" reprinted from the 1925 Wendingen.

Besides including many of the same Weissenhof Estate architects Hilberseimer included in his Internationale Neue Baukunst, Behrendt's Der Sieg des Neue Baustils contained, most likely under the recommendation of his mutual friend Lewis Mumford, two Mendelsohn projects, one by Wright and one by Neutra's idol Adolf Loos.

Amerika: Neues Bauen in der Welt by Richard Neutra, 1930. Cover photo smokestacks by Brett Weston. Photomontage cover designed by El Lissitzky.

Ibid., back cover ad with reference to El Lissitzky's Russland, Neutra's brother-in-law Roger Ginsburger's Frankreich and series editor Joseph Gantner. (Cohen, p. 100). (Author's note: Since 1928 Neutra was American correspondent for Das Neue Frankfurt edited by Gantner.).

All three covers in this 1930 series "Neue Bauen in der Welt"were designed by El Lissitzky. (On the collection as a whole, see "Neues Bauen in der Welt," Rassegna No. 38, 1989).

Erich Mendelsohn, Rudolf Mosse Buchverlag, Berlin, 1930.

Ironically, Rudolf Mosse, for whom Neutra designed an office in 1922 (shown earlier above) while in Mendelsohn's employ, published a monograph Mendelsohn's life work to date in 1930 (see above). 
Kameki Tsuchiura and Richard Neutra, Tokyo, 1930. (P&F, p. 172).

Lewis Mumford contributed five articles to the to the organ of the Deutscher Werkbund, Die Form between 1925 and 1939 through his connection with Die Form editor Walter Curt Behrendt. Richard Neutra contributed 13 articles same publication from 1929 through 1932 through the continuing largess of Heinrich de Fries a Werkbund member and frequent contributor.  Three of the articles, published in 1931, regarded Neutra's time in Japan lecturing and photographing modern architecture, including work by the Tsuchiuras, Neutra's mates at Taliesin while de Fries was compiling the Wright monograph. Thus, this is evidence that the publishing connections made while 1924 Taliesin apprentices continued to pay dividends, at least until the early 1930s. (Author's note: For example, de Fries published an article on Frank Lloyd Wright's Ocatilla Camp in the July 1, 1930 issue. "Neue Plane von Frank Lloyd Wright" and "Modern Concepts Concerning an Organic Architecture from the Work of Frank Lloyd Wright," Die Form, July 1, 1930, pp. 342-349. More than coincidentally, de Fries was one of the first to publish an article on Neutra's Lovell Health House in the same issue. Neutra, Richard, "Gesundhedtshaus in Kalifornien," Die Form, pp. 350-354).

Work by the Tsuchiuras in Neutra's "Neue Architektur in Japan," Die Form, September 15, 1931, pp.. 333-340.

I have tried to somewhat illustrate in this piece the importance of publicity to advancing one's career in architecture and the importance of the right timely connections in making that a reality. The coming together of Mendelsohn, Wright and Neutra in 1924 at Taliesin had many beneficial results for all three architects of which I have only begun to scratch the surface. I hope to build on this piece with future posts so check back from time to time for updates.


Mendelsohn had one-man shows in New York in 1929 at Contempora, at which Wright was invited to speak, and in 1941 at the Museum of Modern Art shortly after permanently moving to the US. The A.I.A. awarded their prestigious Gold Medal to Frank Lloyd Wright in 1949 and Richard Neutra in 1977. MoMA honored Wright and Neutra with large one-man shows in 1940 and 1982 respectively. Wright's work appeared in 78 MoMA exhibitions over the years while Neutra's appeared in 28, and Mendelsohn's in 5. The joint inspiration between the three greats coming together in November 1924 at Taliesin resulted in an entire line of European publications chronicling the advent of modern architecture mainly from a European perspective (see below for example). (Wright and New York: The Making of America's Architect by Anthony Alofsin, Yale University Press, 2019, p. 272).

Befreites Wohen (Liberated Dwelling) by Siegfried Giedion, Lars Muller, 1929. Contains Neutra's Jardinette Apartments with photos by Willard D. Morgan. (Author's note: Neutra's connection with Giedion evolved into his acceptance into CIAM whose annual conference in Brussels Neutra attended in 1930.).

Schindler indirectly profited from Neutra's publicity efforts despite not being included in Hitchcock and Johnson's 1932 "International Style" show at MoMA. The connection of Southern California architects and Eastern U.S. publishers will be developed in future posts. In the meantime a taste of what I have in mind can be gleaned from "Willard D. Morgan: The Early Architectural Photography Connections"). (Author's note: The Neutra's reconnected with the Mendelsohn's in Berlin in 1930 during Neutra's world tour and visited his former employer's just completed residence "Am Rupenhorn" to which Albert Einstein of Tower fame had often attended soirees. The Neutras met the Einsteins in Pasadena in 1932 from where they sent the Mendelsohns greetings via a postcard. (Byal, Christopher, "A Dialogue With Richard Neutra," Opus, Spring 1970, pp. 15-16).