“My Little Gem”
Tours of Frank Lloyd Wright’s Smith House
Sunday, September 30, 1pm & 3pm
Buy your tickets today before the tours sell out!
When Sara Stein met Melvyn Maxwell Smith, she had never heard of Frank Lloyd Wright. Won over by Melvyn’s passion for architecture and undeterred by their school teacher salaries, the couple would go on to meet Frank Lloyd Wright at Taliesin and commission a custom home. Designed in 1946, the Smith House in Bloomfield Hills is an excellent example of Wright’s Usonian ideal, which aimed to build quality houses for the American middle class. The lovingly restored home, which Wright called “My Little Gem” during a 1951 visit, features an L-shaped floor plan and horizontal, cantilevered roof planes. This tour offers a unique view of this special home, its landscape, and the story of a couple whose vision and determination allowed them to achieve their dream.
Admission is $25.00/person and is non refundable. Please call 248-645-3319 for reservations. Tours depart via bus from the turning circle in front of the Art Museum promptly at 1pm and 3pm. Late arrivals cannot be accommodated once the bus departs. Please check in at the front desk of the Art Museum at least 15 minutes before your tour departs. Space is limited to 25 people so prepaid reservations are recommended. Tour fee includes museum admission.
Through October 28, 1:00-2:30pm every Sunday
“The Cranbrook Vision: Architecture, Landscape and Sculpture”
Join us for a walking tour that highlights some of the wonders of the Cranbrook campus. Springing from the visionary ideas of George and Ellen Booth and their collaborations with Arts & Crafts designers, the early decades of the twentieth century laid the groundwork for our stunning National Heritage Landmark site. Following these formative years, the Cranbrook campus became an evolving canvas for the architects, artists, and gardeners who worked to shape the Booths’ desire to create spaces of meaning, distinction, and beauty.
In keeping with Cranbrook’s Arts & Crafts origins, the tour touches on both large and small artistic elements including historical plantings, campus-wide planning vistas, and intricate brickwork on building elevations. Preservation issues are also addressed. Select interiors will be explored, as well as most notably the original Cranbrook School for Boys Dining Hall where visitors are immersed in one of Eliel Saarinen’s great “total works of art.”
Tours depart from the front desk of the Art Museum. Space is limited to 20 people so prepaid reservations are recommended. Reservations are non-transferable and non- refundable.
Please call 248-645-3320 to make your reservation. Admission: $15.00/adults; $10.00/ArtMembers; $13.00/seniors 65+; and $11.00/students with ID. Restroom facilities are very limited on the tour and no food or beverages are available. Please wear comfortable walking shoes and dress according to the weather as the tour will take place rain or shine!
Saarinen House is Eliel Saarinen’s Art Deco masterwork and the jewel of Cranbrook’s architectural treasures. Designed in the late 1920s and located at the heart of Cranbrook Academy of Art, Saarinen House served as the home and studio of the Finnish-American designer Eliel Saarinen (Cranbrook’s first resident architect and the Academy’s first president and head of the Architecture Department) and Loja Saarinen (the Academy’s first head of the Weaving Department) from 1930 through 1950. The extraordinary interior, now impeccably restored, features the Saarinens’ original furnishings, including Eliel’s delicately-veneered furniture and Loja’s sumptuous textiles, as well as early furniture designs by their son Eero Saarinen.
Docent-guided Public Tours of Saarinen House depart from the front desk of Cranbrook Art Museum, where tickets also may be purchased on tour days. Public Tours are scheduled May 3 through October 28, 2012, 2:00pm Thursday through Saturday, and at 1:00pm and 3:00pm on Sunday. Tours are limited to 12 guests.
The tours are about 90 minutes long and include stairs and two ten-minute walks on Cranbrook’s campus. Tours take place rain or shine.
Public Tour Fees: ArtMembers free; $10 Adults; $8 Seniors (65+); and $6 full-time students with ID and children. Saarinen House Tours include admission to Cranbrook Art Museum.
A limited number of Private Tours of Saarinen House are available Monday through Friday, May through October, with at least three weeks advance notice. Private Tour Fees: $10 ArtMembers; $15 Adults and Seniors; and $10 full-time students with ID (with a minimum Private Tour group fee of $100). To inquire about the availability of a Private Tour, please call 248-645-3319.