Monday, April 4, 2011
"The Father of the Modern Skyscraper" on Route 6
Architect Louis Sullivan has been called the Father of Modernism, the Father of the American Skyscraper, the "Spiritual Leader of the Prairie School." He was a mentor to Frank Lloyd Wright, and a "starchitect" in his day. Route 6 town, Grinnell, Iowa, home to the highly rated Grinnell College (the first college established in the West - in 1846), is also home to a Louis Sullivan "Jewelbox" design Merchants' National Bank building.
While most of the building is stark and boxy the ornate medallion over the front entrance looks like a clue in the Davinci Code or something Richard Dryfus would cook up to attract alien spaceships. And what's up with the church-like stained glass? There is an explanation, and I aim to discover it and pass it along to you when I hit Grinnell sometime early June. Stay tuned....