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Evans in Erie County, New York — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Graycliff

A Frank Lloyd Wright Masterwork

 

—Architecture of the Coast —

 
Graycliff Marker image. Click for full size.
By Anton Schwarzmueller, July 15, 2017
1. Graycliff Marker
Inscription.
Section Through Living Room. Glass walls make upper story float and lower story transparent. Terrace mimics cliff brink and makes sky part of the house. Stone extends through house. Stone sided esplanade connects house to cliff. 65' cliff dropping to Lake Erie. Natural cantilever of Tichnor Limestone, the material used for the structure, and the gray band of dense rock that gave Graycliff its name,

Front View. Overhangs & cantilevered balconies break vertical face of endwalls. Low walls extend house and emphasize horizontal form. Low shrubs obscure intersection of house and ground. Glass walls allow view through house to lake and sky beyond. Stone used liberally to meld building walls and cliff. Long, low, horizontal lines are sympathetic with the cliff strata and lake horizon. The lines emphasize continuity of space in both interior and exterior spaces.

Integration of House and Site.
Martin House.
Wright conceived the main house as two buildings connected by a second story bridge. The glass-enclosed space under the bridge focused attention to the view of the lake beyond.

Sunken gardens link outdoor and indoor spaces. Projecting porte cochere welcomes guests to entry. Sunken pool links image of horizon to foreground. Axis of entry drive, reinforced by placement of white pines, focuses
Graycliff Marker image. Click for full size.
By Anton Schwarzmueller, July 15, 2017
2. Graycliff Marker
Marker is on the entrance drive, about 60' from Old Lakeshoe Road.
view toward the lake and setting sun.

Foster House. The Foster House is a more traditional Wright design with extensive eaves and cantilevers. The house was originally conceived as a servant's quarters, but Isabelle's daughter, Dorothy Martin Foster lived here.

Isabelle Reidpath Martin. Graycliff was built as a summer residence for Isabelle Martin and her husband Darwin, retired secretary of the Larkin Company, a soap manufacturing company in Buffalo, NY. Wright was a close friend of the Martins as documented by the large archive of correspondence between them.

Frank Lloyd Wright. Graycliff is an excellent expression of Wright's famous ability to integrate building and site by breaking down the barriers between the building walls and outside spaces.

The American lakeshore west of Buffalo became a popular location for large summer homes after World War I.
 
Erected by Seaway Trail, Inc.
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the Great Lakes Seaway Trail National Scenic Byway marker series.
 
Location. 42° 42.638′ N, 78° 58.235′ W. Marker is in Evans, New York, in Erie County. Marker is on Old Lakeshore Road 0.1 miles west of South Creek Road, on the right when traveling west. Touch for map
Graycliff image. Click for full size.
By Anton Schwarzmueller, July 15, 2017
3. Graycliff
. Marker is at or near this postal address: 6472 Old Lakeshore Road, Derby NY 14047, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 6 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Aaron Salisbury (approx. 2.9 miles away); The Historic First Church of Evans (approx. 2.9 miles away); Stage Coach Stop (approx. 4.2 miles away); In God We Trust (approx. 4.4 miles away); Lake Erie (approx. 4.4 miles away); Dedicated to the Honor and Sacrifice (approx. 4.4 miles away); Major William C. Dudley (approx. 4.9 miles away); Site of First Town Hall (approx. 5.1 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Evans.
 
Also see . . .  Graycliff Conservancy. (Submitted on July 16, 2017, by Anton Schwarzmueller of Wilson, New York.)
 
Categories. Architecture
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on July 16, 2017. This page originally submitted on July 16, 2017, by Anton Schwarzmueller of Wilson, New York. This page has been viewed 46 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on July 16, 2017, by Anton Schwarzmueller of Wilson, New York.
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