Sol Friedman House 'Toy Hill' - 1948

Frank Lloyd Wright
11 Orchard Brook Drive – Pleasantville – NY – USA

Usonia, a cooperative utopian community near Pleasantville, NY, was founded in the 1940's, based on the Broadacre City proposals of Frank Lloyd Wright. Here Sol Friedman, a successful retailer in book stores - sometimes also selling toys - asked Wright to design a “happy house”. Wright came up with two overlapping cylinders, connected with a mushroom-shaped carport, and named the house “Toyhill”.
The two cylinders are connected by the typical Usonian core: a generous space, centred around the fireplace, for living, dining and working with an extensive view to the landscape. A cantilevered balcony / play space on the upper floor of the two-storey cylinder is projected over the living space, while the rest of the upper part has a wedge-shaped division.
The house is placed on a rather steep, heavily wooded slope and is mainly built of concrete and local stone. From the outside the heavy stone masonry and the tilt of the retaining walls give the house a fortress-like appearance, in contrast to the open and fluent interior. As the overhanging roofs are sloping up as they go out, more light comes in.

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