Marion Mahony Griffin Presentation Silk
This architectural presentation drawing depicts the combined site plan, street elevations, and sections of two dwellings built in the Sydney suburb of Castlecrag in the 1920s. The dwellings, known as GSDA no 1 & 2, were designed by Walter Burley Griffin (1876-1937) and delineated by his wife, Chicago born architect and artist Marion Mahony Griffin (1871-1961).
Marion Mahoney graduated from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1894 and from her early professional career, developed a distinctive method for rendering architectural and landscape designs. Marion merged industry pen and wash practices with the Japanese technique of painting on silk with inks and dyes, and used the panel format to give a Japanese style perspective to building and planting schemes.
At the studio of architect and Prairie School leader, Frank Lloyd Wright (1867-1959), Marion first collaborated with future husband Walter Burley Griffin. Her watercolour perspectives were instrumental in Walter’s success in the international competition for the design of Canberra and in 1914 the couple moved to Australia. They later formed the Greater Sydney Development Association (GSDA) and created the harbour-front residential enclave of Castlecrag. The dwellings presented in this panel feature the horizontal lines, simplicity, craftsmanship, solid construction and integration with the natural landscape that characterised the Prairie style.