Appreciating Organic Architecture at Duncan House in Acme, PA
Gulp. Designing the new gardens at Frank Lloyd Wright’s Duncan House in Acme must have felt something like carving the frame for Leonardo’s Mona Lisa. Especially since the architect was adamant that “house and hill should live together," but short on specifics about landscaping outside his “natural houses." It all works in this clearing in the Laurel Highlands, where the Duncan House (plus three more by his apprentices) is available for a weekend getaway at the Polymath Park Resort. Ochre and Cherokee red hues in the sparse plantings mirror the structure’s limited palette and evoke the Twilight Zone decade when Wright designed this early pre-fab for a couple in Lisle, Illinois. A half century later, it was dismantled, shipped, and reassembled onsite by the new owner’s loving hands. Form and function don’t get along much better than this.