Frank Lloyd Wright – The Phoenix From The Ashes

2020, 53, Sigrid Faltin, English.

Sunday 30 May 2021
Film screening at 20:00 Beirut time, 19:00 CET / 13:00 Washington DC.
Folllowed at 21:00 Beirut time, 20:00 CET / 14:00 Washington DC.
by a Zoom Discussion Frank Lloyd Wright, the man, the architect, the legacy with
Dr. Sigrid Faltin, the film director,
Dr. George Arbid, Co-founder & Director of the Arab Center for Architecture – Beirut,
Kristi Jamrisko Gross, Museum guide at Frank Lloyd Wright’s Pope-Leighey House, Alexandria – Virginia,
& Joumana Rizk, Moderator.

Online event

The Movie

The documentary tells the moving life of Frank Lloyd Wright (1867 – 1959), America’s best known architect with hitherto unknown footage. Frank Lloyd Wright was a genius, self-promoter, admired teacher, failed businessman. With the Solmon Guggenheim Museum and Fallingwater, the house built over a waterfall, he created architectural icons. In 70 years he designed over 1000 buildings of which 500 were realized. In July 2019, eight of these structures have been designated as UNESCO World Heritage Sites. “I am the greatest architect who ever lived,” it is said he once boasted.

He knew no compromise, either in his professional or his private life. Behind this was a sensitive and warm-heart person, who never bowed to social morals but who sought and found his ethics in nature. For him, a house should appear as if it had grown out of its surroundings. Today we call this “Eco-Architecture”. The documentary portrays his life and his works with film footage, photos and conversations with biographers, art historians and the author T.C. Boyle, who lives in a Wright house and wrote a bestseller about the master’s wives : The Women.  All interviews were filmed inside Wright buildings. Wright himself speaks to us in interviews from the Fifties, and in quotes from his autobiography.

Zoom Discussion

Sigrid Faltin studied English, German, and history in Bonn and Freiburg. Her Ph.D. thesis was on the Emigration from the Palatinate to the United States in Modern History. After training as a regional correspondent with the German TV station SWF, she worked as an anchor woman for radio and TV. Today she is a documentary film director, writer and producer. She has received several international awards for her films, among them a New York Film Festival award for her internationally produced film about Hilla Rebay, the founding director of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum. She authored a widely respected biography of Rebay and another book on the history of the song La Paloma, about which she made a feature film as well, which was shown on film festivals and on TV worldwide. Her feature length documentary film Kids! Love! Hope! has been nominated for the German TV Award in 2013, the sequel Kids! Love! Future! has been awarded as well.
Dr. Sigrid Faltin is a member of the European Documentary Network.

George Arbid is a Lebanese architect and historian with successive teaching positions at Académie Libanaise des Beaux-Arts (ALBA), American University (AUB) of Beirut and the Lebanese University (UL). He holds a degree in Architecture from ALBA and a Doctor of Design degree from Harvard University Graduate School of Design. He was also a Fulbright Visiting Scholar at the History, Theory and Criticism Program at Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
His researches and writings cover modern architecture in Lebanon and the Arab World. He is a co-founder and director of the Arab Center for Architecture (ACA) in Beirut. He served on several competitions and award juries, including the European Union Prize for Contemporary Architecture – Mies van der Rohe Award 2019 and the Transfer Architecture Video Award 2019.
Dr. Arbid is a member of the advisory committee on heritage at the Ministry of Culture.

Kristi Jamrisko Gross is a museum guide and group tour coordinator at Frank Lloyd Wright’s Pope-Leighey House (1940) in Alexandria, Virginia. As a guide she leads public tours and educational programs, has developed a special tour about Japanese influences on Wright’s architecture, and delivers virtual presentations about the Pope-Leighey House to local senior citizens. In 2018 and 2020 she was awarded fellowships to attend the Frank Lloyd Wright Building Conservancy annual conference
Kristi has also worked at four other historic house museums in Virginia, Maryland, and Washington, DC. Her previous employment includes serving as science and nuclear policy analyst at the Embassy of Japan in the US and teaching English to junior high school students in rural Japan. She holds a B.A. in Government and French from the College of William and Mary and an M.A. in Art History from the University of Maryland. Kristi lives in Alexandria (VA), with her husband, their six-year old son, and their 18-month old daughter.