Cornell Club of Rochester – Growing Up in a Frank Lloyd Wright House
November 16, 2020 @ 12:00 pm
Monday, November 16, 2020
12:00 PM to 1:00PM
Special Annual Cornell-Penn “Luncheon”
A ZOOM Event on Monday, November 16, 2020 at 12:00PM
Don’t Miss Author & Speaker Kim Brown Bixby, Cornell ‘91
The pandemic is preventing us from meeting in person this November, but the Annual Cornell-Penn Luncheon still lives on!
This year the Cornell and Penn Clubs of Rochester are hosting a first-ever virtual event on Monday, November 16, at noon eastern time, to preserve the 80 year+ tradition.
We are proud to have a Cornell graduate who grew up right here in Rochester in the E.E. Boynton House designed by world-famous architect Frank Lloyd Wright.
In her multi-media presentation and latest book, author Kim Brown Bixler recounts the joys and pitfalls of owning and living in a Wright-designed house. Living with the public’s curiosity, playing hide-and-seek, coping with the habitually leaky roof and managing constant renovations make this an unforgettable story.
If you love reality home-renovating programs, restoration projects and architecture in general, you’ll love her first-hand account of what life is really like growing up in a Frank Lloyd Wright House.
Details follow. Bring your own lunch this year to the presentation wherever you may be. Registration for the webinar is free, easy and necessary to attend.
Growing Up in a Frank Lloyd Wright House
What is it like growing up in a house designed by renowned American architect Frank Lloyd Wright? Kim Brown Bixler, whose parents purchased the Wright-designed E.E. Boynton House in Rochester, New York, in 1977, says the daring home, built in 1908, was as unconventional as the architect.
The Edward E. Boynton House on 16 East Boulevard near Culver Road in Rochester was commissioned by widower Edward Everett Boynton and his teenage daughter Beulah Boynton. According to Beulah Boynton (recounted to Times Union reporter William Ringle in 1955), the cost to her father was between $45,000 – $50,000 for the house, lot and the contents – a staggering sum in 1908. This two-story, approximately 5,500 square foot home, was originally situated on an acre lot in the city of Rochester. Original Frank Lloyd Wright furniture still remain in the house.
Despite the excitement of living in such famous quarters, Bixler witnessed the impracticality of some of Wright’s wondrous designs. “The beauty of the house was indisputable,” she says, “but repair and restoration projects were underway non-stop at our house. My parents raced to keep one step ahead of the deterioration speeded by the elements. No stranger to harsh weather himself, Wright designed the Boynton House in an unforgiving climate that forced my parents to repeatedly open their checkbook.”
The Boynton House was purchased in 2009 and underwent a massive restoration and rehabilitation. The transformation was documented in the PBS documentary Frank Lloyd Wright’s Boynton House: The Next Hundred Years. Aware that she was working on a book, Bixler received a call from the documentary crew at the start of their project requesting her expertise on the home’s largely unknown history. In addition to contributing her research findings, historical documentation and family photos, Bixler and her mother were filmed visiting the house several times during construction. “Stunned amazement,” best sums up the reaction of both Bixler and her mother Karen Brown. Bixler said, “My folks kept the house together with band aids and love. Thanks to the current owners, the Boynton house received the necessary expert craftspeople and financial support necessary to keep it standing for another 100 years.”
Registration for the virtual meeting is free and easy! Early registration with your e-mail address is definitely encouraged, so you receive reminders directly from Zoom.
When: Monday, November 16, 2020 12:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)
Topic: Growing Up in a Frank Lloyd Wright House
Speaker: Kim Brown Bixler, Cornell Arts & Sciences ’91
Register in advance with your e-mail address for this webinar:
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.
About the Speaker
Kim Brown Bixler is a Government major from the College of Arts & Sciences at Cornell University, class of 1991. The summer before her senior year Kim decided to take organic chemistry and apply to medical school.
Organic Chemistry in six weeks? Hah!
At the end of eight hours of class and lab she decided to abandon that dream and celebrate at Rulloff’s in Collegetown. But the end of one dream spawned another. She met her future husband Tim Bixler that night – a Chemistry major from Yale – who was about to start at Cornell Law School (he’s Cornell Law 1993).
Kim Bixler has written one and edited five other books. She published Growing Up in a Frank Lloyd Wright House, which was featured in the PBS documentary Frank Lloyd Wright’s Boynton House: The Next Hundred Years and appeared on NPR’s Here & Now in conjunction with Wright’s 150th Birthday celebration. (Sadly, Mr. Wright couldn’t attend.)
Kim Bixler has given dozens of lectures at museums, architecture firms, libraries, schools and numerous Wright sites including Taliesin West, Unity Temple, the Darwin Martin House, Wright’s Mason City Iowa sites, the Marin County Civic Center, the Hollyhock House and more.
Fast forward to 2020. Kim and Tim Bixler have two children – a son who is a senior at Cornell and a daughter who is Cornell Pandemic Class of 2020. Kim and her family currently live in Manhattan Beach, California, just outside of Los Angeles.