Louis Sullivan (1856-1924) for the Peoples' Savings and Loan Association Bank Building drawing design for a plaster band in wood frieze Sidney, Ohio, 1917 paper, graphite signed with LHS monogram inscribed with dimensions image: 11 1/2"w x 7"h
Provenance: Gift of Louis Sullivan to William C. Presto Purchased from Sylvia (Mrs. William) Presto, circa 1971 Acquired from the above by the present owner Collection of Wilbert and Marilyn Hasbrouck, Chicago, Illinois
Literature: Twombly, Robert and Narciso G. Menocal, Louis Sullivan: The Poetry of Architecture, W. W. Norton & Company, 2000, p. 335 (illustrated).
Catalog Note: If Frank Lloyd Wright popularized organic architecture, then Louis Sullivan was its progenitor. Despite only a five-year apprenticeship (1888-1993), Wright called Sullivan his "liebe Meister" ("beloved Master") for the rest of his life. The key precept Sullivan developed was that a building's essential nature could only be expressed through facade composition and organic ornamentation. In this extremely rare drawing — only a handful of Sullivan's sketches are in private hands — it is possible to observe the master's drafting process at work. In 1917, Sullivan designed the Peoples' Savings and Loan Association Bank Building in Sidney, Ohio. Here the rich detail of a plaster band in a wood frieze is intended to enliven and exist in harmony with structural components. The bank opened on May 31, 1918 and was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1965. In retrospect, Sullivan considered this bank building the finest of his career.