Plains Modern Part Three
No Place Like Home: Modern Residential Design in Kansas
When one thinks of Kansas, a hotbed of progressive design is likely not the first descriptor that comes to mind. One usually thinks of the Wizard of Oz, figures like Dwight D. Eisenhower, and perhaps the origin of fast food pizza (Pizza Hut). That said, a deeper review of architecture and design brings to the forefront the breadth of modernism that can be found throughout the state. Major institutions and forward-thinking clients brought many nationally recognized outsiders to design within Kansas. Examples include the elegant 1953 Snower Residence designed by Marcel Breuer (the only Breuer design west of the Mississippi River), two houses by the itinerant Paul Schweikher in Topeka (one now demolished), and an Edward Durell Stone House, one of a few built examples of his Colliers magazine design, in Dodge City, Kansas. Famously, Buckminster Fuller’s 1946 Dymaxion (“Wichita”) house was prototyped next to a lake just outside of that city, its lightweight design facilitating a 1970s relocation to a spot inside the Henry Ford Museum outside of Detroit, Michigan.