Modern American Architecture

In Aspen’s post war boom the burgeoning ski resort became a gathering place for industrialist and intellectuals alike.  It was in the early 1950’s when Aspen’s first new buildings since the silver crash of 1893 started to be built.  A major influence in architecture at the time was modern.  A reaction to the overly decorated Victorian architecture, modernism trimmed things down to a simple and clean design.

The most well known modern architects in Aspen at this time where Herbert Bayer & Fritz Benedict.  Bayer study and taught at the Bahaus School in Germany, while Benedict study under Frank Loyd Wright.  The influence of the modernists can be seen in many buildings throughout Aspen.

It’s this trace of modernism that led us on a pilgramge to Talsien West, Frank Loyd Wrights winter home and school in Arizona.

Taliesin Grounds

Taliesin West (Arizona)










Wright the father of modern American Architecture began his career shortly after the panic of 1893 in Chicago under Sullivan the father of the skyscraper.  As well as designing some world renown buildings like the Johnson Wax Building he also created some stunning American homes like Falling Water, Wright also taught.  In his still of teaching students did everything from upkeep and service of the “campus” itself to the study of multiple design disciplines.

Many are quick to point out that Aspen’s Fritz Benedict studied landscape design under Wright and although that was his intention he would have also been schooled in building design.

You can still find examples of Wrightian Architecture throughout the Architecture of Aspen, Colorado.