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Ellis & Alice Feiman Residence (1954 - S.371)
 
  INTRODUCTION    FLOOR PLAN    PERFORATED LIGHT SCREEN    1966    2015 EXTERIOR  
 

Introduction

     
Ellis was born in East Liverpool, England in June 1908. Alice Spielman was born in April 1912, in the Bronx, New York. In 1920, when Alice was 8, her family moved to Canton Ohio. Ellis' family also moved to Canton, and both families were very active in the Jewish community there.
       "Mr. Feiman is a musician of note...  Mrs. Feiman is well known in Massillon (Ohio) as a teacher of piano... After attending Western Reserve University he graduated from Mt. Union College. He later took a post graduate course at University of Edinburgh, Scotland, and is now associated in business with his father."*
       "Alice graduated from high school at age 16 and accepted a full four-year scholarship in piano performance at the Cleveland Institute of Music, receiving a Bachelors degrees in Music, '32 and Masters in '36... In 1937 she married Ellis A. Feiman whom she had known since childhood when they both rode the trolley to Cleveland for lessons at the Institute."**
       As a wedding gift, Ellis' parents gave them a Steinway piano, and a generous share of the family's wholesale tobacco and candy business.
       There are three Frank Lloyd Wright homes in Canton, Ohio. The Nathan and Jeanne Rubin Residence (1951 - S.343), the John and Syd Dobkins Residence (1953 - S.362), and the Ellis and Alice Feiman Residence (1954 - S.371.)
       Jeanne Rubins and Alice Feiman were sisters.
       “My mom and dad met Frank Lloyd Wright,” recalled Robert Rubin, who lives in the home that his parents, Nathan and Jeanne Rubin, commissioned the noted architect to design early in the 1950s. “They went to see Wright several times.”
       “The (Rubin) house was finished, and Nate and Jeanne moved in and invited Alice over and she loved it and wanted one herself,”
said Dave Lewis, who lives beside the Feiman house and knew both families.
       The nine city traveling exhibition "Sixty Years of Living
   Architecture, the Work of Frank Lloyd Wright" began in Florence (1), Italy, in June, 1951, and closed in Chicago (9) in October, 1956. When it open in New York City (7) on October 22, 1953, not only did it include the exhibition, but it also included a newly designed fully furnished 1,700 sq. ft. ''Usonian House'' (S.369), constructed on the site for the soon-to-be Guggenheim Museum.
       On a trip from Cincinnati to Seattle with my daughter and two grandsons, we decided to surprise them with a trip to the Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio. Of course, this gave me the opportunity to view the Feiman Residence.
       The Feiman Residence is considered the first Usonian house built, based on Wright's design for the New York exhibition house. The second being the Trier Residence (1956 - S.398).
       While the New York exhibition house was based on the 3 foot square module, and utilized brick and oak plywood, the Feiman house was based on the four foot module and constructed of brick and Philippine mahogany. The openings in the brickwork, creating a decorative pattern, matched the exhibit house. Like the exhibition house, the ceiling was composed of halved sheets of plywood, with every other sheet rotated 90 degrees, creating a rich wood pattern. Like the Trier Residence, this home also included a third bedroom. Wright also added a carport which is set at a 90 degree angle to the front of the house, and covers the entrance. Taliesin apprentice Allan J. Gelbin oversaw the construction of the house.
       Ellis was 62 years old when he past away on October 13, 1970. To honor her husband, Alice established the Ellis A. Feiman Memorial Award in Cello at the Cleveland Institute of Music. She continued to live in their Wright home until 1983 when she moved away from Canton. She past away on July 15, 2006 in Baltimore, Maryland, donating her 1925 Steinway piano to the Cleveland Institute of Music.
       May 2015
    *Evening Independent, Massillon, Ohio, July 20, 1937.
**Alice Feiman Obituary, Canton OH, The Repository.
     
     
     

Feiman Residence Floor Plan

 

Like the Trier Residence, this home also included a third bedroom. A carport which is set at a 90 degree angle to the front of the house, covers the entrance. Floor Plan courtesy of William Storrer, adapted by Douglas M. Steiner.

 
 
Feiman Floor Plan detail compared to Usonian Exhibition House below.
 
 
 

Feiman Residence Perforated Light Screen

 
Feiman Residence Perforated Light Screen. The light screens are on the northern side and run from the Entrance along the Gallery and the Master Bedroom. Adapted by Douglas M. Steiner.
 
 
 
Feiman Residence Exterior - By Douglas M. Steiner (2015)
     
Ellis & Alice Feiman Residence 2015, Canton, Ohio (1954 - S.371). The Feiman Residence is considered the first Usonian house built, based on Frank Lloyd Wright's design for the New York exhibition house. The second being the Trier Residence (1956 - S.398). While the New York exhibition house was based on the 3 foot square module, and utilized brick and oak plywood, the Feiman house is based on the four foot module and constructed of brick and Philippine mahogany. The openings in the brickwork, creating a decorative pattern, matches the exhibit house. Like the   exhibition house, the ceiling is composed of halved sheets of plywood, with every other sheet rotated 90 degrees, creating a rich wood pattern. Like the Trier Residence, this home also includes a third bedroom. Wright also added a carport which is set at a 90 degree angle to the front of the house, and covers the entrance. Taliesin apprentice Allan J. Gelbin oversaw the construction of the house. Set of 58 photographed in May, 2015 by Douglas M. Steiner, Copyright 2015.
     
1) Feiman Residence viewed from the Northeast. The Feiman Residence is considered the first Usonian house built, based on Frank Lloyd Wright's design for the New York exhibition house, although changes were made. The exhibition house privacy wall attached to the end of the home, and the perforations were on either side of the fireplace. Wright turned the wall 90 degrees, running the length of the Living Room wall and beyond, perforating the northern side of the Living Room and yard. The Living Room is on the left, the Entrance is hidden in the center, the Carport is on the right. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-1)
 
2) Feiman Residence viewed from the Northeast. Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright in 1953, the wall, adding privacy to the yard, ran from the left, seamlessly becoming the Living Room wall, and ending at the Entrance. The openings in the brickwork, created a decorative pattern on the exterior and interior wall, and matched the design of the exhibit house. The yard is on the left, the Living Room is on the right. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-2)
 
3) Feiman Residence viewed from the North. Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright in 1953, the carport is held up by four brick piers. The Living Room is on the left. The perforated holes in the brick wall adds a design inside and out. The carport roof cantilevers out approximately fourteen feet past the piers and covers the Entrance, reached between the piers on the left. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-3)
 
4) Feiman Residence viewed from the West. The carport is held up by four brick piers. The Living Room is in the background, clerestory windows allow soft light. The bedroom wing is to the right. The carport roof cantilevers out approximately fourteen feet and covers the Entrance. A low wall guides visitors to the Entrance. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-4)
 
5) Feiman Residence viewed from the West. The carport is held up by four brick piers. The Living Room is in the background, clerestory windows allow soft light. A skylight adds natural light to the utility room. The carport roof cantilevers out approximately fourteen feet and covers the Entrance. A low wall guides visitors to the Entrance. The bedroom wing is to the right. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-5)
 
6) Feiman Residence viewed from the West. The carport is held up by four brick piers. The Living Room is in the background, clerestory windows allow soft light. A skylight adds natural light to the utility room. The carport roof cantilevers out approximately fourteen feet and covers the Entrance. A low wall guides visitors to the Entrance. The bedroom wing is to the right. Perforated light screens run from the Entrance along the Gallery and the Master Bedroom. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-6)
 
7) Feiman Residence viewed from the Northwest. The Living Room is in the background, clerestory windows allow soft light. A skylight adds natural light to the utility room. The roof cantilevers out approximately fourteen feet and covers the Entrance. A low wall guides visitors to the Entrance. The bedroom wing is to the right. Perforated light screens run from the Entrance along the Gallery and the Master Bedroom. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-7)
 
8) Feiman Residence, view of the bedroom wing from the Northwest. The Entrance is on the left, bedroom wing is on the right. Perforated light screens run from the Entrance along the Gallery and the Master Bedroom on the right. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-8)
 
9) Feiman Residence, view of the carport from the West. Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright in 1953, the carport is set at a 90 degree angle to the front of the house. The roof cantilevers out approximately fourteen feet past the four piers and covers the Entrance. A low wall guides visitors to the Entrance. As in the rest of the house, the ceiling is composed of halved sheets of plywood, with every other sheet rotated 90 degrees, creating a rich wood pattern. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-9)
 
10) Feiman Residence viewed from the West. The low wall curves gracefully toward the entrance, guiding visitors from the drive to the front door. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-10)
 
11) Feiman Residence viewed from the Northwest. The low wall flows gracefully from he piers toward the entrance, guiding visitors to the front door. The Bedroom wing is to the right. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-11)
 
12) View of the Feiman Residence Entrance from the West. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-12)
 
13) View of the Feiman Residence Entrance from the Northwest. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-13)
 
14) View of the Feiman Residence Carport from the Entrance. The roof cantilevers out approximately fourteen feet past the four piers. The ceiling of the carport is composed of halved sheets of plywood, with every other sheet rotated 90 degrees. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-14)
 
15) View of the Feiman Residence Carport from the Entrance. Four foot square modules are scored into the concrete of the Entrance. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-15)
 
16) Feiman Residence viewed from the West. The perforated privacy wall runs the length of the Living Room wall and beyond, enclosing part of the yard. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-16)
 
17) Feiman Residence viewed from the Northeast. Perforated light screens run from the Entrance along the Gallery and the Master Bedroom. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-17)
 
18) Detail of the perforated light screens which run from the Entrance along the Gallery and the Master Bedroom. The pattern is cut from two matching pieces of plywood, sandwiched with a sheet of class, adding a measure of privacy from the street. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-18)
 
19) Feiman Residence viewed from the West. The Living Room and workspace are in the background. Clerestory windows, that rise above the bedroom wing, adds indirect lighting to the Living Room. Perforated light screens run from the Entrance along the Gallery and the Master Bedroom, adding a measure of privacy from the street. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-19)
 
20) Feiman Residence viewed from the West. The Living Room is in the background on the left. Perforated light screens run from the Entrance along the Gallery and the Master Bedroom, and wraps around the corner. Glass, sandwiched between to sheets of perforated plywood, is mitered at the corner. The outdoor tool storage room is on the right. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-20)
 
21) Detail of the corner perforated light screens. Glass, sandwiched between to sheets of perforated plywood, is mitered at the corner. Roof rafters have been uncovered, exposing the original construction. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-21)
 
22) Detail of the corner perforated light screens. Glass, sandwiched between to sheets of perforated plywood, is mitered at the corner. Perforated light screens run from the Entrance along the Gallery and the Master Bedroom, and wraps around the corner. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-22)
 
23) Detail of the Feiman Residence fascia. The top piece is slanted at 15 degrees. The lower piece has a vertical groove approximately four inches apart. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-23)
 
24) Feiman Residence viewed from the West. Both the fascia and perforated light screens turn and end at the brick wall enclosing the tool storage room. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-24)
 
25) Detail of the Feiman Residence fascia. The top piece is slanted at 15 degrees. The lower piece has a vertical groove approximately four inches apart. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-25)
 
26) Feiman Residence viewed from the South. The Tool Storage Room is on the left. The Master Bedroom is in the center. The corner is mitered glass. Two sets of doors open outward. The Bath is behind the second planter. Two Bedrooms are to the right. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-26)
 
27) Feiman Residence viewed from the South. The Tool Storage Room is on the left. The Master Bedroom is in the center. The corner is mitered glass. Two sets of doors open outward. The Bath is behind the second planter. Two Bedrooms are to the right. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-27)
 
28) Detail of the built-in brick planter. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-28)
 
29) Detail of the mitered glass corner. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-29)
 
30) Feiman Residence viewed from the Southeast. The corner is mitered glass. Doors open outward, and are hung by piano hinges. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-30)
 
31) Feiman Residence viewed from the Southeast. The corner is mitered glass. Doors open outward, and are hung by piano hinges. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-31)
 
32) Feiman Residence viewed from the South. The Master Bedroom is on the left. The Bath is behind the planter. Two Bedrooms are to the right. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-32)
 
33) Feiman Residence viewed from the South. The Bath is on the left behind the planter. Two Bedrooms are to the right. The corner is mitered glass. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-33)
 
34) Feiman Residence viewed from the East. The Master Bedroom is on the far left. Two bedrooms are in the center. The Utility Room is on the right. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-34)
 
35) Feiman Residence viewed from the South. The Workspace (Kitchen) is in the center. Two tall windows open outward over the built-in planter. The roof cantilevers out about six feet past the Kitchen. The Living Room is on the right. Roof rafters have been uncovered, exposing the original construction. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-35)
 
36) Feiman Residence viewed from the South. The Workspace (Kitchen) is in the center. Two tall windows open outward over the built-in planter. The roof cantilevers out about six feet past the Kitchen. The Living Room is on the right. Floor to ceiling doors open outward. The roof cantilevers out about eight feet past the Living Room. Roof rafters have been uncovered, exposing the original construction. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-36)
 
37) Feiman Residence viewed from the South. The Workspace (Kitchen) is in the center. Two tall windows open outward over the built-in planter. The Living Room is on the right. Floor to ceiling doors open outward. The roof cantilevers out about eight feet past the Living Room. The terrace concrete has been scored in four foot modules. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-37)
 
38) Detail of the cantilevered roof. Roof rafters have been uncovered, exposing the original construction. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-38)
 
39) Detail of the trellis openings. The top piece is slanted at 15 degrees. The lower piece has a vertical groove approximately four inches apart. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-39)
 
40) Feiman Residence viewed from the South. "More and more, so it seems to me, light is the beautifier of the building." Frank Lloyd Wright On Architecture, 1941, p.191. The Workspace (Kitchen) is on the left. Two tall windows open outward over the built-in planter. The Living Room is on the right. Floor to ceiling doors open outward. The roof cantilevers out about eight feet past the Living Room. The terrace concrete has been scored in four foot modules. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-40)
 
41) Detail of the built-in planter, which is approximately four feet wide and eight feet long. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-41)
 
42) Feiman Residence viewed from the East. The Bedroom wing is in the background. The Workspace (Kitchen) is on the right. Two tall windows open outward over the built-in planter. The roof cantilevers out about six feet past the Workspace. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-42)
 
43) Feiman Residence viewed from the South. "More and more, so it seems to me, light is the beautifier of the building." Frank Lloyd Wright On Architecture, 1941, p.191. The Workspace (Kitchen) is on the left. The Living Room is in the center. Floor to ceiling doors open outward. The cantilevered trellised roof softens the direct sunlight. The terrace concrete has been scored in four foot modules. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-43)
 
Feiman Residence viewed of the interior Dining Area 1966. Note the two brick piers now missing on the outside terrace.
 
44) Feiman Residence viewed from the South. The Living Room is on the left. The perforated wall on the rights adds privacy from the road. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-43)
 
45) Feiman Residence viewed from the South. The Living Room is on the left. Three sets of floor to ceiling doors open outward. There is a mitered glass corner to the right. The trellised roof softens the direct sunlight and cantilevers out ten feet from the brick wall. The perforated wall on the rights adds privacy from the road. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-45)
 
46) Feiman Residence viewed from the South. The perforated privacy wall begins at the Entrance on the left, flows past the Living Room, seamlessly connecting with the exterior wall on the right. The perforated holes and clerestory windows can be seen in the Living Room. The four foot square module Wright based the design on, is scored into the homes tinted concrete slab, flows from the interior outward, and is evident in the concrete Terrace, doors and windows, and the trellis above. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-46)
 
47) Feiman Residence viewed from the South. Floor to ceiling windows and doors on the South, and clerestory windows above, floods the Living Room with soft light. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-47)
 
48) Feiman Residence viewed from the South. Walls, windows and doors align with the four foot square module. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-48)
 
49) Feiman Residence viewed from the South. Three sets of floor to ceiling doors open outward. A mitered glass corner is on the right. Just inside the corner is an interior planting area. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-49)
 
50) Detail of the mitered glass corner. Just inside the corner is an interior planting area. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-50)
 
51) Feiman Residence viewed from the Southeast. A large fireplace covers the interior Southeast corner. There is a window in the Northeast corner. The roof appears as wings on either side of the fireplace mass. The perforated privacy wall is on the right. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-51)
 
52) Feiman Residence viewed from the Southeast. The fireplace mass is on the left. The perforated privacy wall which begins at the Entrance to the left, flows past the Living Room, seamlessly connecting with the exterior wall on the right. The roof extension over the window in the Northeast corner defuses direct sunlight into the Living Room. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-52)
 
53) Feiman Residence viewed from the East. Detail of the window in the Northeast corner. The roof extension over the window defuses direct sunlight into the Living Room. Two windows which open outward are hung by piano hinges. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-53)
54) Detail of the perforated privacy wall. The wall is 2 ˝ bricks thick, the thickness of one brick's length. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-54)
 
55) Feiman Residence viewed from the East. The terrace rises slowly, covered by a cantilevered trellis extending out ten feet on the left. A large fireplace covers the interior's Southeast corner. There is a window in the Northeast corner. The roof appears as wings on either side of the fireplace mass. Clerestory windows floods the Living Room with soft light. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-55)
 
56) Feiman Residence viewed from the East. The terrace rises slowly, covered by a cantilevered trellis extending out ten feet on the left. A large fireplace covers the interior's Southeast corner. There is a window in the Northeast corner. The roof appears as wings on either side of the fireplace mass. Clerestory windows floods the Living Room with soft light. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-56)
 
57) Feiman Residence viewed from the Southwest. The perforated privacy wall which begins at the Entrance, flows past the Living Room, seamlessly connecting with the exterior wall, ends at the eastern edge of the property. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-57)
 
58) Feiman Residence viewed from the Northeast. The perforated privacy wall runs from the eastern edge of the property, seamlessly connecting with the Living Room, and ends at the Entrance. The ends of the corner bricks are cut, allowing for the shorter wall to be at approximately a 60 degree angle. 20 x 14 high res digital color photograph. (ST#2015.12.0216-58)
   
   
   
Ellis & Alice Feiman Residence (1954 - S.371)
   
Date: 1966

Title: Ellis & Alice Feiman Residence 1966, Canton, Ohio (1954 - S.371).

Description: View of Alice Feiman in the Dining area and Kitchen (right) viewed from the North. The Feiman Residence is considered the first Usonian house built, based on Frank Lloyd Wright's design for the New York exhibition house. The second being the Trier Residence (1956 - S.398). While the New York exhibition house was based on the 3 foot square module, and utilized brick and oak plywood, the Feiman house is based on the four foot module and constructed of brick and Philippine mahogany. Wright also added a carport which is set at a 90 degree angle to the front of the house, and covers the entrance. Alice graduated from high school at age 16 and accepted a full four-year scholarship in piano performance at the Cleveland Institute of Music, receiving a Bachelors degrees in Music, '32 and Masters in '36... In 1937 she married Ellis A. Feiman whom she had known since childhood. Ellis was 62 years old when he past away on October 13, 1970. She continued to live in their Wright home until 1983 when she moved away from Canton. She past away on July 15, 2006 in Baltimore, Maryland. Hand written on verso: Mrs. Ellis A Feiman, 452 Santa Clara Dr. NW Canton. House designed by Frank Lloyd Wright." Stamped on verso: "Jan 18 1966. The Cleveland Plain Dealer. Photo by William A. Wynne." Photographed on Jan 18, 1966 by William A. Wynne. Acquired from the archives of the Cleveland Plain Dealer.

Size: Original 9 x 7 B&W photograph.

S#:
1679.17.0817
   
Date: 1966

Title: Ellis & Alice Feiman Residence 1966, Canton, Ohio (1954 - S.371).

Description: View of Terrace from the Dining Room. The Feiman Residence is considered the first Usonian house built, based on FL Wright's design for the New York exhibition house. The second being the Trier Residence (1956 - S.398). While the New York exhibition house was based on the 3 foot square module, and utilized brick and oak plywood, the Feiman house is based on the four foot module and constructed of brick and Philippine mahogany. Wright also added a carport which is set at a 90 degree angle to the front of the house, and covers the entrance. Alice graduated from high school at age 16 and accepted a full four-year scholarship in piano performance at the Cleveland Institute of Music, receiving a Bachelors degrees in Music, '32 and Masters in '36... In 1937 she married Ellis A. Feiman whom she had known since childhood. Ellis was 62 years old when he past away on October 13, 1970. She continued to live in their Wright home until 1983 when she moved away from Canton. She past away on July 15, 2006 in Baltimore, Maryland. Hand written on verso: "Home of Ellis A Feiman, 452 Santa Clara Dr. NW Canton. House designed by
Frank Lloyd Wright." Stamped on verso: "Jan 18 1966. The Cleveland Plain Dealer. Photo by William A. Wynne." Photographed on Jan 18, 1966 by William A. Wynne. Acquired from the archives of the Cleveland Plain Dealer.

Size: Original 7 x 9 B&W photograph.

S#:
1679.18.1117
   
   
   

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