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Nakoma Clubhouse Furniture and Fabric 2001

     

Nakoma Clubhouse. Nakoma Clubhouse Furniture and Fabric. Road Trip. During the beginning of June, 2015, we were notified that the Nakoma Golf Resort in Clio, California, was retiring and selling off the original furniture designed by John Rattenbury and the Taliesin Architects in 2001. Like the collaboration between Frank Lloyd Wright and George Niedecken during the beginning of the nineteenth century, Rattenburg was an apprentice and worked closely with Wright. John Rattenbury became a member of the Taliesin Fellowship in 1950, worked with Frank Lloyd Wright for nearly a decade. He worked on 60 of Wrights projects, including the Guggenheim Museum, the Gammage Auditorium and the Marin County Civic Center.
       In 1959, Frank Lloyd Wright designed the Lykes Residence, his last residential work. As John Rattenbury describes it, "After studying the topographic map, Wright set it aside for a while and worked on other projects. He always allowed an idea to germinate before committing to it to paper. The next morning he quickly sketched a plan on the map... With a panoramic view in mind, and considering the shape of the natural plateau, he drew two overlapping circles... After a while, Wright got up from his desk and walked out of the studio. He never returned. The next day he was in the hospital with an intestinal problem..." A Living Architecture, Rattenbury, 2000, p.247-250. Working drawings were completed in 1966 by Rattenbury, who had worked closely with Mr. Wright on the initial plans and supervised the construction of the home. He designed the furniture and built-ins, adapted from the original plans created by Wright before his death.
       A few notable projects he was lead architect on, were the Mesa Community Center, 1980; Arizona Biltmore expansion, 1987; The Phoenix Zoo Masterplan, 1987; Lewis and Roca Law Offices, Phoenix, 1990; Wailapu Valley Country Club (Marilyn Monroeís House), Maui, 1994; Lykes Remodel, 1995. Just to

 

name a few. In 1997, he was selected to design the new Life Dream House which was eventually built at the Nakoma Golf community.
       In 1995, Dariel and Peggy Garner contacted the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation and began working with the Taliesin Architects in 1995. During a planning meeting they were shown the original Nakoma clubhouse plans. Arnold Roy was the Architect, Rattenbury oversaw all the interior designs and details, including the furniture, art glass windows, custom hand-knotted carpets from China, even the dining room place settings, adapting the design, as he did for the Lykes Residence, from Wrightís original plans. For the upholster, he selected Schumacherís "Imperial Triangle," teal, beige and ivory, which was first manufactured in 1986, but is reminiscent of "Design No. 705," Schumacher/Wright, 1955. Dedication ceremonies for the completed clubhouse were held in May, 2001.
       John Rattenbury worked with the Taliesin Architects until 2003.
       Upon hearing that Nakoma was retiring the original furniture, we contacted them to save and preserve one example of each of the pieces Rattenbury had designed. We rented a uhaul trailer, and my son, grand daughter and myself left on a road trip from Seattle to Clio, California. We made one stop in Redding California, where the kind people at the Pilgrim Congregational Church (1958 - S.431) allowed us to tour and photograph their church, inside and out.
       We were able to acquire examples of the barrel chairs, dining room chairs, small, medium and large tables, a plant stand, three bolts of Schumacher fabric and two pieces of the hand-made carpet that surrounded the fireplace in the Dining Room. We were not able to acquire an example of the coffee table. 2001.68 (1-27)
       (Updated March 2016)

     
     

  SCHUMACHER FABRIC   BARREL CHAIR    DINING ROOM CHAIR    LARGE TABLE    MEDIUM TABLE    SMALL TABLE    PLANT STAND    CARPET    COFFEE TABLE    NAKOMA CLUBHOUSE STUDY 

     
 

Schumacher Fabric

 

Schumacher's 1955 "Imperial Triangle fabric was "adapted by Mr. Wright from an upholstery fabric for the Imperial Hotel..." Frank Lloyd Wright, Decorative Designs Collection, 1990, page 17. "Various fabrics and rugs were especially designed to complete the unity of the Imperial Hotel... A section (plate 14) is one of three samples to have been preserved at Taliesin. As in the Midway Gardens murals, the design is based on disks and overlapping circles." The Decorative Designs of Frank Lloyd Wright, Hanks, 1979, p.132 (plate 14 is example 1 below). Examples 2-5 below appear to use the fabric from example on below, plate 14. The fabric in example 6 below appears to lack the "circle design."
       The Nakoma Clubhouse chairs were upholstered in Schumacherís "Imperial Triangle," teal, beige (rose) and ivory. It was first manufactured in 1986, and is reminiscent of "Design No. 705," Schumacher/ Wright, 1955. In 1955, Schumacher, in collaboration with Frank Lloyd Wright, produced "Schumacherís Taliesin Line of Decorative Fabrics and Wallpaper" sample book. Design No. 705 Fabric Samples included Champagne, Willow Green, Gold, Pink, Turquoise, Granite and Tan. Matching wallpaper was available. In 1987, Schumacher, working with the Frank Lloyd Wright foundation, produced "Frank Lloyd Wright, A collection of Wallcoverings, Companion Fabrics and Borders" sample book. Colors included Taupe (warm beige), Pewter, Seafoam (ivory with light green triangles), Tan and Copper. Although there was matching fabric and borders, the design was different. Photographs of "Liberty Weave" appeared in the earlier "Frank Lloyd Wright: Schumacher" 1886, there were no fabric samples of it in 1987. Three bolts of fabric, 56" wide, teal, beige (rose) and ivory. (ST#2001.68:25-27)

 
1) Example of fabric from the Imperial Hotel, 1916. "Various fabrics and rugs were especially designed to complete the unity of the Imperial Hotel... A section (plate 14) is one of three samples to have been preserved at Taliesin. As in the Midway Gardens murals, the design is based on disks and overlapping circles." The Decorative Designs of Frank Lloyd Wright, Hanks, 1979, p.132. Photo courtesy of The Decorative Designs of Frank Lloyd Wright.
 
2) Imperial Hotel, Tokyo, 1923. Photograph detail of the 1923 real photo postcard. View of bedroom. Besides the single bed with the prairie styled headboard, there are three chair variations, a hassock and two tables. The seat of the chair on the right is square, the back is shaped as a hexagon. Two pads are held in place by ties that are fed through the frame to the back side and match the patterned fabric used throughout the room. The two armchairs and hassock are upholstered with matching fabric, as is the bedspread and pillow cover.
 
3) Imperial Hotel, Tokyo, 1923. Photograph detail of the 1923 photograph. View of possibly a bedroom suite sitting room. There are three side tables, two variations of arm chairs, one floor lamp and the carpet designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. The armchairs are upholstered with the patterned fabric.
 
4) Imperial Hotel, Tokyo, Circa 1923. 1923 postcard. Furniture appears to be upholstered in a yellow patterned fabric. View of the Promenade, which was later called "Peacock Alley". When facing the Imperial Hotel, this ran between the two long outside bedroom wings on the second floor toward the rear of the hotel. This view was from the outside looking toward the center. This early postcard shows the interior color scheme of the Imperial Hotel as Wright intended it.
 
5) Imperial Hotel, Tokyo, Circa 1930. Photograph from a 1930 booklet. View of a bedroom. Armchairs appear to be upholstered in a green patterned fabric and the beds appear to be covered in a yellow patterned fabric.
 
6) Imperial Hotel, Tokyo, Circa 1923. 1923 postcard. View of a bedroom suite. Furniture appears to be upholstered in a plain fabric.
 
7) Schumacher Fabric "Design No. 705," Champagne. In 1955, Schumacher, in collaboration with Frank Lloyd Wright, produced "Schumacherís Taliesin Line of Decorative Fabrics and Wallpaper" sample book. Design No. 705 Fabric Samples included Champagne, Willow Green, Gold, Pink, Turquoise, Granite and Tan. Matching wallpaper was available.
 
8) Schumacher Fabric "Design No. 705." Top row (L to R): Willow Green, Gold, Pink. Bottom row (L to R): Turquoise, Granite and Tan. "Schumacherís Taliesin Line of Decorative Fabrics and Wallpaper"
 
9) Schumacher/Heritage-Henredon Dining Room 1955. This is a copy of the photograph published in the "Schumacherís Taliesin Line of Decorative Fabrics and Wallpaper," Schumacher/Wright, 1955, as an example of "Design No. 705" fabric and wallpaper. A similar design was used in 2001 at the Nakoma Clubhouse, Cleo, CA. The furniture was produced by Heritage-Henredon, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. The buffet cabinet in the background is a combination of three small chests, No. 2002 (L), 2003 and 2001 (R). The table appears to be possibly a prototype of the dining room tables to come. The legs are correct, with the bullnose outer edge and carved patterned design. The round table top has the bullnose edge, but no design. To date, we have seen rectangular table tops as well as other furniture with the decorative design, but the round table tops, No. 2000 and 2001, are trimmed with copper moulding. The chairs do not appear to be designed by Wright, and were possibly used due to the lack of samples at the time. There is a note in House Beautiful, November, 1955, p.282 which might shed some light in explaining the discrepancies. "Much of this merchandise was not available for photograph as this issue went to press..." (Thanks to Peter Kelley, MassModern for his insight.)
 

10) Schumacher/Heritage-Henredon Dining Room 1955. This is a copy of the photograph published in House Beautiful, November, 1955, p.283. Drapes and wallpaper are "Design No. 705", "Schumacherís Taliesin Line of Decorative Fabrics and Wallpaper," Schumacher/Wright, 1955, fabric and wallpaper. A similar design was used in 2001 at the Nakoma Clubhouse, Cleo, CA. The furniture was produced by Heritage-Henredon, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. The buffet cabinet in the background is a combination of four small chests (L to R), No. 2003, 2002, 2003 and 2001. The shelf was an optional add-on. The table appears to be possibly a prototype of the dining room tables to come. The legs are correct, with the bullnose outer edge and carved patterned design. The round table top has the bullnose edge, but no design. To date, we have seen rectangular table tops as well as other furniture with the decorative design, but the round table tops, No. 2000 and 2001, are trimmed with copper moulding. The bench is No. 1904. There is a note in House Beautiful, November, 1955, p.282 which might shed some light in explaining the discrepancies. "Much of this merchandise was not available for photograph as this issue went to press..." (Thanks to Peter Kelley, MassModern for his insight.)

 
11) Schumacher Wallpaper sample Taupe (warm beige). In 1987, Schumacher, working with the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation, produced "Frank Lloyd Wright, A collection of Wallcoverings, Companion Fabrics and Borders" sample book. Colors included Taupe (warm beige), Pewter, Seafoam (ivory with light green triangles), Tan and Copper.
 
12) Schumacher Fabric. The Nakoma Clubhouse chairs were upholstered in Schumacherís "Imperial Triangle," teal, beige (rose) and ivory. Three bolts of fabric, 56" wide, teal, beige (rose) and ivory.
 
13) Sample of Schumacher "Imperial Triangle" ivory.
 
14) Sample of Schumacher "Imperial Triangle" beige (rose).
 
15) Sample of Schumacher "Imperial Triangle" Teal.
 
 
 

Nakoma Barrel Chair

 

Nakoma Clubhouse Barrel Chair, 2001. 27.5" wide x 27.5" deep x 28.5" high. "What we need today is that art shall have a new direction and artists consider the possibilities of an easy chair or the fireplace quite as important as the house itself or the picture on its walls, to the end that everything may contribute to easy utility and quiet beauty to the end, for it is not in itself that a thing is chiefly beautiful but in its relationships." ó Frank Lloyd Wright, "Art in the Home." Arts for America, June, 1898, p.581. Frank Lloyd Wright first designed the barrel chair for the Darwin Martin Residence (1904). In 1905, he designed a barrel chair for the Frank L. Smith Bank. Slight modifications were made to the Martin design for the H. F. Johnson Jr. Residence, Wingspread (1937). He liked the design so much that when the order was placed for Johnson, he ordered a dozen for Taliesin. Constructed of solid wood and plywood, the design of the Nakoma barrel chairs utilizes five sides of the octagon. Chairs were upholstered in Schumacherís "Imperial Triangle," Teal, Beige (Rose) and Ivory. It was first manufactured in 1986, and is reminiscent of "Design No. 705," Schumacher/ Wright, 1955. Chairs were also upholstered in "Liberty Weave," Schumacher Series 89690 (1986) and burgundy vinyl. We acquired four barrel chairs, two in beige, two in vinyl. (ST#2001.68:1-4)

 
1) Nakoma barrel chairs upholstered in "Liberty Weave" Schumacher Series 89690, photographed at the Nakoma Clubhouse, 2012.
 
2) Nakoma barrel chairs upholstered in Schumacher's "Liberty Triangle," Teal, photographed at the Nakoma Clubhouse, 2013.
 
3) Nakoma barrel chairs upholstered in Schumacher's "Liberty Triangle," Teal, photographed at the Nakoma Clubhouse, 2013.
 
4) Nakoma barrel chairs upholstered in Schumacher's "Liberty Triangle," Beige (Rose), photographed in 2016.
 
5) Nakoma barrel chairs upholstered in Schumacher's "Liberty Triangle," Beige (Rose), photographed in 2016.
 
6) Nakoma barrel chairs upholstered in Schumacher's "Liberty Triangle," Beige (Rose), photographed in 2016.
 
7) Nakoma barrel chairs upholstered in Schumacher's "Liberty Triangle," Beige (Rose), photographed in 2016.
 
 
 
 

Nakoma Dining Room Chair

 

Nakoma Clubhouse Dining Room Chair, 2001. 21" wide x 21" deep x 40" high. Constructed of solid wood and plywood, Chairs repeat the octagon footprint of the Nakoma Clubhouse "Wigwam." The shape of the wigwamís clerestory art glass windows is inverted and incorporated into the design on the back of the chairs, and are accented with patinated copper triangles. Chairs are upholstered in Schumacherís "Imperial Triangle," teal, beige (Rose) and ivory. It was first manufactured in 1986, and is reminiscent of "Design No. 705," Schumacher/Wright, 1955. Fourteen chairs, eight ivory, three in beige, three in teal. (ST#2001.68:5-18)

 

1) Nakoma dining room chairs upholstered in Schumacher's "Liberty Triangle," Ivory, photographed in the Members Dining Room at the Nakoma Clubhouse, 2012.
 
2) Nakoma dining room table and three dining room chairs upholstered in Schumacher's "Liberty Triangle," beige (rose), photographed in the Members Dining Room at the Nakoma Clubhouse, 2012.
 
3) Nakoma dining room chairs repeat the octagon footprint of the wigwam. The shape of the wigwam clerestory art glass windows is inverted and incorporated into the design on the back of the chairs.
 
4) The back of the Nakoma dining room chairs are accented with patinated copper triangles.
 
5) Chairs are upholstered in Schumacherís "Imperial Triangle," teal, ivory and beige (Rose).
 
6) View of he dining room chair from three views.
 
 
 

Nakoma Dining Room Table (Large)

 

Nakoma tables were produced in three sizes; Dining Room (large); Lounge (Medium); and End Tables (Small). Constructed of solid wood and plywood. The large and medium table tops are constructed of a single sheet of plywood, trimmed on all four sides. The smaller table is created using four triangles, the tops meet in the center, and trimmed on four sides. The Nakoma table legs are not just legs, but a design that masters space. Tables are very functional. Place dining room table end to end, and you have an eight, twelve or sixteen foot table. Nakoma Clubhouse Large Dining Room Table, 2001. 42" wide x 42" deep x 30" high. Medium Table, 2001. 30" wide x 30" deep x 30" high. Small End Table, 2001. 22.5" wide x 22.5" deep x 25" high. (ST#2001.68:19)

 
1) Nakoma dining room table and three dining room chairs photographed in the Members Dining Room at the Nakoma Clubhouse, 2012. Large Dining Room Table, 2001. 42" wide x 42" deep x 30" high.
 
2) Nakoma dining room table photographed in the Members Dining Room at the Nakoma Clubhouse, 2012. Large Dining Room Table, 2001. 42" wide x 42" deep x 30" high.
 
3) Nakoma dining room table front view photographed in 2016. Large Dining Room Table, 2001. 42" wide x 42" deep x 30" high.
4) Nakoma dining room table front view photographed in 2016. Large Dining Room Table, 2001. 42" wide x 42" deep x 30" high.
 
 

Nakoma Lounge Table (Medium)

 

Nakoma tables were produced in three sizes; Dining Room (large); Lounge (Medium); and End Tables (Small). The large and medium table tops are constructed of a single sheet of plywood, trimmed on all four sides. Constructed of solid wood and plywood. Medium Table, 2001. 30" wide x 30" deep x 30" high. (ST#2001.68:20)

 
1) Nakoma lounge table three-quarter view photographed in 2016. Medium Table, 2001. 30" wide x 30" deep x 30" high.
 
2) Nakoma lounge table front view photographed in 2016. Medium Table, 2001. 30" wide x 30" deep x 30" high.
 
3) Nakoma lounge table top view photographed in 2016. Medium Table, 2001. 30" wide x 30" deep x 30" high.
 
 
 

Nakoma End Table (Small)

 

Nakoma tables were produced in three sizes; Dining Room (large); Lounge (Medium); and End Tables (Small). Small tables were also used in the Nineteenth Hole Lounge. The smaller table top is created using four triangles, the tops meet in the center, and trimmed on four sides. Constructed of solid wood and plywood. Small End Table, 2001. 22.5" wide x 22.5" deep x 25" high. (ST#2001.68:21)

 
1) Nakoma end table and two barrel chairs photographed in the Nineteenth Hole Lounge at the Nakoma Clubhouse, 2012. Small End Table, 2001. 22.5" wide x 22.5" deep x 25" high.
 
2) Nakoma end tables photographed in the Nineteenth Hole Lounge at the Nakoma Clubhouse, 2012. Small End Table, 2001. 22.5" wide x 22.5" deep x 25" high.
 
3) Nakoma end table front view photographed in 2016. Small End Table, 2001. 22.5" wide x 22.5" deep x 25" high.
 
4) Nakoma end table front view photographed in 2016. Small End Table, 2001. 22.5" wide x 22.5" deep x 25" high.
 
5) Nakoma end table top view photographed in 2016. The smaller table top is created using four triangles, the tops meet in the center, trim added on four sides. Small End Table, 2001. 22.5" wide x 22.5" deep x 25" high.
 
6) Nakoma end table top view photographed in 2016. The smaller table top is created using four triangles, the tops meet in the center, trim added on four sides. Small End Table, 2001. 22.5" wide x 22.5" deep x 25" high.
 
7) Detail of the Nakoma end table photographed in 2016. The smaller table top is created using four triangles, the tops meet in the center, trim added on four sides. Small End Table, 2001. 22.5" wide x 22.5" deep x 25" high.
 
 
 

Nakoma Plant Stand

 

Nakoma Clubhouse Plant Stand, 2001. 15" wide x 15" deep x 42" high. Constructed of solid wood and plywood, the plant stand repeats the octagon footprint of the Nakoma Clubhouse "Wigwam." (ST#2001.68:22)

 
1) Nakoma Plant Stand photographed at the Nakoma Clubhouse, 2012. Plant Stand, 2001. 15" wide x 15" deep x 42" high.
 
2) Nakoma Plant Stand photographed in 2016. Plant Stand, 2001. 15" wide x 15" deep x 42" high.
 
3) Nakoma Plant Stand front view photographed in 2016. Plant Stand, 2001. 15" wide x 15" deep x 42" high.
 
4) Nakoma Plant Stand three-quarter view photographed in 2016. Plant Stand, 2001. 15" wide x 15" deep x 42" high.
 
5) Nakoma Plant Stand base photographed in 2016. Plant Stand, 2001. 15" wide x 15" deep x 42" high.
 
 
 

Nakoma Dining Room Carpet

 

Nakoma Clubhouse Dining Room Carpet, 2001. Four feet wide by almost fifteen feet long. Custom hand-knotted carpets from China surrounded the massive fireplace in the main "Wigwam" Dining Room. The carpet design was adapted by Rattenbury from Frank Lloyd Wrightís original plans. Gold, green, red and light blue. Two pieces. (ST#2001.68:23-24)

 
1) At the center of Frank Lloyd Wright's design for the Nakoma Clubhouse is the octagonal "Wigwam Room" and the majestic stone "Campfire" incorporating two rotated squares. Surrounding the massive fireplace is the custom hand-knotted carpet from China. Carpet was also placed in the Nineteenth Hole Lounge. Photographed at the Nakoma Clubhouse, 2012.
 
2) Surrounding the massive fireplace is the custom hand-knotted carpet from China. Carpet was also placed in the Nineteenth Hole Lounge. Photographed at the Nakoma Clubhouse, 2012.
 
3) Nakoma Clubhouse Dining Room Carpet photographed in 2016. Custom hand-knotted carpets, 2001. Two pieces four feet wide by almost fifteen feet long.
 
4) Nakoma Clubhouse Dining Room Carpet photographed in 2016. Custom hand-knotted carpets, 2001. Two pieces four feet wide by almost fifteen feet long.
 
 
 

Nakoma Coffee Table

 

Nakoma Clubhouse Coffee Table, 2001. We attempted to acquire an example of the coffee table that coordinated with the rest of the Nakoma furniture, but were unable to.

 
 
 

BACK TO THE NAKOMA CLUBHOUSE STUDY

 

Photographs and text by Douglas M. Steiner, Copyright 2016.

 
 

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