Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Pink houses in Druid Hills and Candler Park

This one is in the part of Druid Hills that you'd think is Virginia-Highland. Anyway, It's an old gas station on Briarcliff. The pink hides behind the wall. I think the owners of Indigo and Partners, former Morningside restaurants, converted this to a home.

This huge pink house in just east of Little 5 points propper.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

December 29th teardown on Morninside Drive, Atlanta

They tell us that the economy is horrible, that nobody is building. So yesterday they tore down a house on Morningside Drive.


Friday, December 26, 2008

10' WILL NOT CLEAR, the great arched bridge on Ponce

It's not quite as grand (or pink) as the Red Bridge Over Ormewood Avenue in Grant Park Atlanta. It makes for a grand entrance to Decatur to the east or to Druid Hills to the west. Don't drive your tall truck in the outside lanes. "10' WILL NOT CLEAR"


Tuesday, December 23, 2008

The Atlanta Botanical Garden bridge that didn't collapse

We didn't even know they were building a new pedestrian bridge at Piedmont Park until it collapsed. We thought it was this one. We'd crossed it several times with our children.

Monday, December 22, 2008

"Architecture - The New Liturgical Movement" and "Beatus Est"

Architecture - The New Liturgical Movement and Beatus Est are two great blogs that focus on classic architecture. Fellow architecture tourists with better pictures, better writing, and better credentials than me.

From Beatus Est: "Work is finishing up at Thomas Aquinas College's Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity Chapel. Some great work by New Classicist architect Duncan Stroik ... This piece is by Giancarlo Buratti as well as all the other exterior sculptural work. "
Wasn't this a scene from La Dolce Vita?

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Appreciation: Atlanta churches and church windows

There are so many and most Atlanta churches are worth a good look inside and out. Most regular church goes only see the inside of their own. I don't know how to photograph church interiors. Better to go in person.

Here is one on Ponce:


And one in Decatur:


Saturday, December 20, 2008

Best "In-keeping" renovation in Morningside?

We'd like our new mini-mansions to fit in but most don't succeed. Some don't even try.

This one at 1418 N Morningside Dr may be the best in Morningside. From the street it's a high-style bungalow in scale with it's neighbors. The architect (who?) took advantage of the sloping lot, stair-stepping up the hill in 3 levels. It's huge but you can't tell from the street.

It's for sale and it's expensive.

This view is from the steps for Morningside Presbyterian Church.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Little house with big "old" style in Drew Valley

Going high style in multi-million dollar houses is like shooting fish in a barrel. Even then there are plenty of misses. I prefer great design in smaller packages. This little house is over the top; but over scaled is usually best. See the big picture. It's too great to be a teardown, I hope.

This house makes me smile.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Pink in Druid Hills

I'm not sure if this is the only pink house in Druid Hills.

Architecture tourists should enjoy Druid Hills for it's variety of stately homes. Quite a few are by Buck Crook and Neel Reid and others I don't know so much about yet. Unlike Buckhead, Druid Hills has smaller lots. You can see all the houses.

Some are special. Drive Fairview Road: A few blocks of great houses, many styles, close to the street for our enjoyment.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Steamlined escalator lobby at Colony Square

It's like a magnified knife edge or the bow of a ship. It's 4 stories tall! It's not boring but it is unusual.



Saturday, December 13, 2008

Anubis, King Tut's protector of the dead protects midtown Atlanta

PC121492-Tut-Close-Sky-200-267King Tut is in town: "King Tut and the Golden Age of the Pharaohs Exhibition" at the Civic Center.

Lucky us: We get a giant statue on Peachtree at 13th. It looks quite authoritative there, lording over the midtown skyline and new construction. It must be 25 feet tall, elevated on a pedestal, behind a tall fence, emerging from a vacant lot used for construction storage. It certainly transcends all this, facing north, just doing his job.

Jackal-headed god Anubis is believed to be the guide and protector of the dead in ancient Egypt

Anubus lords over the midtown skyscrapers

Dominates the Campanile

1100 Peachtree abides in its shadow

Friday, December 12, 2008

Rock Springs Road in Piedmont Heights

It's the mixture of styles that catch the eye: One interesting block of in-town Atlanta architecture.

Rock Springs is one street with 3 names through 3 neighborhoods. This is the Rock Springs in Piedmont Heights, the western most end. It's unlike any other block I now of: Family sized houses, set back more than usual with bigger than average lots, slightly elevated.

This is the newest one. It was a teardown - not shy at all.


Red tile with barrel dormers

Yellow-ish brick, symetry and eyebrow dormer


Arch and bay clapboard

One of the very best ranchers for miles and miles

Rock Springs Road is in Piedmont Heights. It changes to North Rock Springs at Piedmont Road and begins its wind though Morningside. Until it crosses Morningside Drive where it becomes East Rock Springs Road. It crosses Rock Creek into Druid Hills where - typical for Atlanta - it becomes North Decatur Road.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Atlanta's wonderful black house and 3 pink houses

It's in Atkins Park. It's been featured on the Homes Across America TV show. It's really black and - who would have thought it - wonderful. With a red tile roof and palm tree, what more could you want?

I love Atlanta's pink houses. This one is in the Old Fourth Ward.

In Inman Park

In Atkins Park

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

The dark shadows on Peachtree: 1010 and "12th and midtown"

Peachtree has a new dark spot. Drive though midtown, north or south. There is a block in shadow, even claustrophobic. Atlanta's midtown architecture jolts yet again.

Peachtree Street has a kink, a curve between 11th and 12th Streets. In the age of rundown Midtown (which has lasted for what, the last 30 years?) the curve had bit of charm. It suspended the "city-ness" of Peachtree for a couple of blocks. (Why is that curve there anyway? It's probably an interesting story.)

Not anymore. The spectacular 1010 and 12th and Midtown buildings appear to block Peachtree at the curve. And, the curve is dark, almost like a tunnel. This is no place in Atlanta where you "feel" building in quite this way.

Is it a good feeling? I don't know but we'll get to try it out for the next 100 years. I'm anxious to see the block full of storefronts and people.

Here is the approach from 10th street. Is there a way through?



Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Shining beautiful winter light on Atlanta's architecture

PC071480-Blue-Vernaclar-Withg-Skyline-ViewThis little blue house has emerged from the Kudzu and glows in the low December sunlight.

Though I'm a warm weather person and I certainly enjoy our usually lush southern landscape, I take great pleasure in winter light. It makes winter tolerable.

Overgrown Kudzu and well intended but overgrown landscaping hide our great houses. The low angled summer sun lights the buildings, changes the shadows and reveals new details.

Back the the little blue vernacular house. You'll never find it. If I turned around, you'd see the skyline view and know where it is. I'll let it stay hidden.

Not everyone likes Atlanta's Federal Reserve Building on Peachtree at 10th. I do.

It's our own modest Taj Mahal. It's Georgia marble (42,000 pieces) covered facades glow in Atlanta's winter sunlight like a light bulb. The rest of mid-town seems dull in comparison. A government bank, in marble should be overwhelmingly authoritarian. I don't feel that. There won't be any street-level stores but there is a nice lawn. The "Dump" next door has a metal fence for goodness sake. I prefer the Fed's eagle, columns, and benches.

I enjoy but dread the appeals court building downtown. The Federal Reserve is a welcome pleasure from every direction. Every new building in Midtown makes it look even better.

Reynolds Stewart, Stewart & Associates with Robert A.M. Stern Architects. Doesn't it remind you a little of the Mansion in Buckhead, another Stern building?

Monday, December 8, 2008

2008 Telephone Factory Art Show - links to artists' websites - a few notes

PC081482-Telephone-Factory-South-Facade-CenterIt was the 12th Annual Art Show and Sale. I went on Sunday December 7. I had a great time: More than enough art and a tour of a great industrial building full of hard lofts. The lofts themselves were stunning. Even the smallest are breathtaking spaces. The biggest would make decent skateboard parks.

P.S. Somebody cut down those trees that ruin the view of the colonnaded entrance.

The art is overwhelming after a while. By the time I was done, I was mentally exhausted. I wanted to tour the artists' websites at my leisure. But there isn't a list of links to their sites. So I made one.

If you are one of the artists, please tell me about any mistakes.

In alphabetical order:
To the residents of the Telephone Factory: thanks for allowing me in your building and your homes.

To folks interested in next years tour:
  • It's a bargain (free)
  • There is an elevator.
  • Start at the top and work your way from stairwell to stairwell.
  • Each loft is loaded with refreshments.
  • Valet parking will save you time and hill hiking.
  • Ask at the entrance for any drawings, raffles, or contests.
To the artists:
  • Wow and thanks.
  • It's hard to read your URL from business cards.
  • Hope your sales improve your Christmas holidays.
  • I bought small Christmas presents from 3 different artists.
  • Make sure visitors can find you and try to engage each visitor. You need a "Big Tricked-out Name Tag" (thanks GEICO commercial). Maybe you need a dedicated assistant to help egage visitors.
To the organizers:
  • Wow, I'm looking forward to the 2009 show.
  • Give artists a link and perhaps an image on the show's website.
  • Greet visitors with information about raffles and contests.
A few more Telephone Factory pictures. I couldn't get the whole south facade in one picture. It's a very big building, on a landscaped hilltop. It's a proud and elegant facade with yellow brick horizontals with red brick columns breaking up the long horizontal spans of windows. Work is work but if you have to work anywhere, how nice to work in a first class factory building.

Four stories to the left, a colonnaded entrance tower and one story to the right also disguise the bulk of the building. It would be typical of Southern Bell / ATT to use this design all over America as is the case of the "Ford Factory" (here is a Ford Factory in Portland) building on Ponce. You could splurge more on design if you are building more than one.

The south facade's one-story end.

The tree blocks the elegant entrance. I'm sure it's a great tree, maybe even historic. CUT IT DOWN and plant some historic trees on a smaller scale. I'm sure the architects would gasp if they saw this.

The west end shows 4 stories engaging the slope.

The west facade faces the railroad, soon to become now the Belt Line. The building continues to show a pretty face. The stair could have been boring. Instead they have a softening curve. Great details.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Dresden neighborhood - "big wall" building and abandoned vernacular

It's the west end of Dresden. Maybe it's Ashford Park. Anyway, a great location for tear-downs but not a legacy of great architecture.

The original homes do have their charms: Nice lot, modest house, 2 outbuildings, a great house for grandma and grandpa. But next door, the big wall - the big monolithic wall.

There are 2 abandoned vernacular homes on Dresden near Ellijay that always catch my eye and another hidden in the overgrowth. These would be happy anywhere in the rural south. Makes me curious about the history of the area.


Next door is a modest 1-story with porch and dormer on a great hilltop lot.


It's for sale.

This one on Ellijay hides in the brush. Elegant proportions. It can't last long.



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