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[Fallingwater]
Hatchway stairs to stream from living room
The "hatchway" consists of small vertical glass doors (near the camera in the bottom of the photo) that open out toward the camera as well as horizontal sliding glass panels that can be pushed back. This opening leads to the staircase to the stream below. So not only is the main level of the house cantilevered over the stream and partly over the waterfall, the main room on the main level - the living room (or great room) - is physically connected to the stream (Bear Run) via the staircase.
      Notice that the ceiling here (but in no other part of the house) is glass, set on a continuation of the trellis over the southeast terrace, so that a vertical openness above and below is created, which Edgar Kaufmann, Jr. describes in his beautiful book as a "column of air" to be contrasted with the "column of stone" that was the great, solid chimney wall.
      Notice also the stone floor which, because of its being polished, has a wet look, suggesting closeness to the water below. The pillar on the left can be seen through the window in another photo, a reverse view looking in from outside.
Original photo, used by permission. Copyright cambridge2000.com.
Click here or on photo for a somewhat larger (600x800 pixel) version.

Frank Lloyd Wright designed for the psychology of the user: He saw meaning in the psychological effect his organic architecture had on people, and creatively planned his environments for the peace, mental health and happiness of people.


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