David Romero recreates Frank Lloyd Wright buildings in colour visualisations

Architect David Romero has created colour visualisations of a pair of now-demolished Frank Lloyd Wright buildings, previously only seen in black-and-white photographs.

The Larkin Administration Building by Frank Lloyd Wright was completed in 1904 and demolished in 1950

Romero’s Hooked on the Past images visualise the interiors and exteriors of Frank Lloyd Wright’s demolished Larkin Administration Building and ruined Rose Pauson House, as well as their detailing and furniture.

Architect David Romero’s photoreleastic images capture the red brick and pink-tinted mortar of the building

The Spanish architect chose to recreate the two buildings, as both are important to Wright’s design legacy but are poorly recorded – especially in colour.

Wright is considered one of the 20th century’s most important architects, and his work is credited a precursor to the modernism.

The visuals feature intricate detailing including the ornamentation on the building’s facade

Romero wanted the images to be photorealisitic and so used modelling programmes AutoCAD and 3ds Max, before using Vray and Photoshop to add in various hues and textures.

Romero’s images show the grand atrium topped by a skylight inside the offices, as well as built-in furniture

“My project Hooked On The Past is devoted to recreate important buildings of our past which have been lost or are currently deeply damaged, as well as relevant architectural projects which were never materialised,” Romero told Dezeen.

Details like planting, lighting and gold decoration are also included

“Here is the result, which as far as I know is the first time anyone has recreated this building in photorealistic way and in colour, a step necessary in order to return to this masterpiece some of the life and magic that it had in its day,” he continued.

Wright’s Rose Pauson House built in 1942 also features in Romero’s Hooked on the Past series

He captured the red brick and pink-tinted mortar of the five-storey office building for the Larkin Soap Company of Buffalo in New York – a detail he said was only revealed recently – and the stone and wood Rose Pauson House in Pheonix.

Wright completed the Larking Administration Building in 1904 but it was demolished in 1950 to make way for a truck stop that was never built.

Made of stone and wood, the house burnt down one year after completion following a fire has large expanses of glazing to offer views of the desert in Arizonia

In designing the building, Wright created the first fully air-conditioned workplace, as well as offering an alternative working layout. Inside the building open-plan offices were arranged around a large central atrium topped by a skylight.

Romero has recreated all of the details that made the building unique, including stained glass windows, built-in desk furniture and suspended toilet bowls.

The fire was supposedly caused when an ember ignited the curtains, which Romero has detailed with striped patterns

To add authenticity to the images, Romero also modelled and rendered a car from the era and parked it in front of the building.

Wright’s other lost building is the Rose Pauson House, which features masonry walls that appear to emerge from a rock mixed with long horizontal boards of wood.

Wooden furniture, cushions and a carpet are included in the interior renderings

Designed for sisters Rose and Gertrude Pauson, the residence had large expanses of glazing one side panoramic view of its Arizona desert location.

It was finished in 1942, but burnt down a year later when an ember from the fireplace ignited a curtain. Perhaps as a reference to this, Romero used Marvelous Designer – a 3D rending tool for fabrics – to add striped curtains to run along the inside of the windows, as well as cushions and fabrics.

Romero used a range of programmes including 3ds Max and photoshop, aiming to make the images photorealistic

There were some colour photographs to work from of the Pauson residence, due to a photographic report from Pedro E Guerrero, but the images had faded over time.

“The Rose Pauson House was a little gem within the extensive work of Frank Lloyd Wright,” said Romero. “Designed in the 40s it is considered a masterpiece, but after a tragic fire this building disappeared after only one year of existence.”

Although some colour images of the built residence remain, they have faded over time

“As in my previous work with the Larkin, I thought it was worthwhile to visit such a fascinating building, so now you can enjoy the visit to this superb ship that once sailed through the Arizona desert,” he added. “Of the many constructions of Wright who have been lost over time, this is one of the most yearned.”

After the fire, just the walls and foundations remained and became a local landmark named Shiprock.  These were later removed to make way for a street, but the chimney was moved south to functions as a permanent monument to the Alta Vista subdivision lands.

Among Frank Lloyd Wright’s most famous projects is the 1927 Fallingwater house in Pennsylvania, the 1939 Johnson Wax headquarters in Wisconsin and the 1959 Guggenheim Museum in New York.

Last year, 10 of his buildings were nominated for UNESCO’s World Heritage List.

New York’s Museum of Modern Art will host a major retrospective of Wright’s work in 2017 to coincide with what would have been his 150th birthday.

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