The Harry Halverson Lecture on American Architecture: Kathryn O’Rourke ’02
Taliesin West, Frank Lloyd Wright’s part-time home and studio in the Arizona desert, has long been considered one of the architect’s more enigmatic works. With its rough stone and concrete walls, its powerful orientation toward natural forms, and its evocation of a deep history of architecture, it differed markedly from his more celebrated buildings. Taking Taliesin West’s strangeness as a point of departure, this talk considers how the building’s archaic qualities and Wright’s humanism, as expressed in his writings, illuminate developments in the architectural modernism of the 1930s.
Kathryn O’Rourke ’02 is an architectural historian and associate professor of art history at Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas. She received her M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania. Her research focuses on 20th-century architecture in the Americas. O’Rourke is the author of Modern Architecture in Mexico City: History, Representation, and the Shaping of a Capital, which received the 2018 Alice Davis Hitchcock Award from the Society of Architectural Historians, and is vice chair of the State Board of Review of the Texas Historical Commission and secretary of the Society of Architectural Historians.
The Harry Halverson Lecture Fund
Photograph by Pedro E. Guerrero, 1940