In "Building with Nature: Inspiration for the Arts & Crafts Home" Freudenheim weaves together the lives and philosophies of William Morris, John Ruskin, Frederick Law Olmsted, John Muir, Greene & Greene, Irving Gill, Bernard Maybeck, and others with the dramatic economic, social, design and cultural changes that took place in America between 1876 and 1916. Chronicling both intellectual theory and architectural history, this ground-breaking book will appeal to general readers as well as to those enthusiastic about the Arts and Crafts Movement, its architecture and furniture.
Freudenheim demonstrates how the "simple life" manifested in the rustic architecture found in Yosemite, English cottages, Japanese barns, and Swiss chalets, became the basis for the design of the American Arts and Crafts home advocated by these pioneering thinkers. Their devotion to simplicity for both the interior and exterior design of these houses also helps to explain why they embraced plain, sturdy Mission Style furniture. Freudenheim points out how numerous individuals, both American and British, helped spread these ideas across America.
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