Mill Run, Pa. – Sept. 3, 2019 – Fallingwater visitors can learn more about Frank Lloyd Wright’s architecture and the Kaufmann family’s use of textiles through a recently opened exhibition – Eleanor Pritchard: Framing a View – on display through December in the Fallingwater Visitors Center Speyer Gallery.
London-based weave designer Eleanor Pritchard spent a week at Fallingwater in December 2018 to bring a special textile to life. Pritchard’s design process is the basis for this new Fallingwater exhibition, offering a behind-the-scenes view of her response to Wright’s architecture and the artwork, objects and textiles displayed in the house as well as those housed in Fallingwater’s collection storage.
Pritchard named the textile “Ffenestr,” which in Welsh translates to window, and which reflects Wright’s heritage as well as the location of the mill she used to weave it. During her stay, Pritchard drew inspiration from the southern window wall of Edgar Kaufmann jr.’s third-floor study, creating a pattern based on the intersection where its clear glass and “Cherokee” red-painted steel sash meets the house’s stone chimney mass. Ffenestr is available for sale as a reversible throw and a pillow cover exclusively through the Fallingwater Museum Store at the Visitors Center or online at FallingwaterMuseumStore.org.
The exhibition features a full-size recreation of Pritchard’s cork storyboard wall, meticulously rebuilt and installed in the gallery by Pritchard, as well as sketches and “bits and bobs” of the Ffenestr design process, images of the southwest Wales mill where the textile was woven, and materials and textiles pulled from Fallingwater’s archives.
“I like to think that my weave designs work on two scales,” Pritchard says. “From a distance you see the overall geometric pattern, and as you approach and view it much closer, you see the more subtle mixes of yarn – one red against another, white and stone colors interweaving and so on. I like to think that a closer view is rewarded!”
The Speyer Gallery is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. every day through Dec. 1. except Wednesdays and Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. There is no charge to view the exhibition once a tour ticket or grounds pass is purchased online, by phone or at the entrance gate. For other opportunities to see the exhibition, please call the day of your visit to check availability. For more information or to inquire about ticket availability, visit Fallingwater.org or call Fallingwater Visitor Services at 724-329-8501. To read more about Eleanor Pritchard’s stay at Fallingwater and the development of Ffenestr, visit Eleanorpritchard.com/journal.
Join the conversation with Fallingwater on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Photos of the Eleanor Pritchard: Framing a View exhibition have been made available courtesy of the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy: https://we.tl/t-tilF6LM7ar
About the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy and Fallingwater:
The Western Pennsylvania Conservancy (WPC) enhances the region by protecting and restoring exceptional places. A private nonprofit conservation organization founded in 1932, WPC has helped to establish 11 state parks, conserved more than a quarter million acres of natural lands and protected or restored more than 3,000 miles of rivers and streams. The Conservancy owns and operates Fallingwater, now a UNESCO World Heritage site, which was donated to WPC in 1963 and symbolizes people living in harmony with nature. In addition, WPC enriches our region’s cities and towns through 132 community gardens and other green spaces that are planted with the help of about 12,000 volunteers. The work of the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy is accomplished through the support of more than 9,000 members. For more information, visit WaterLandLife.org or Fallingwater.org.
Senior Administrator of Special Projects, Fallingwater