Art comes in many forms:
In the vibrant colors of a stained glass window by our friend Fran,
and in the form of a well-made structure of a more practical nature. The tall structure in the center of the picture is an elevator, designed by Fran's husband, Bud, built by my husband, and with Fran's art adding enchantment to the finished product.
As you can see there are many stairs leading up to Bud and Fran's front door. And as we get older our knees start to creak and it gets painful to negotiate stairs like these every day. So what is one to do? Well, Bud decided to build an elevator. It had to sit in the right spot, it had to fit in with the house, and of course, it needed gazillion approvals by the city. All this took a long time, but Bud was not to be deterred. Once all the paperwork and approvals were in place, the work could begin and Bud hired my husband's company to build the structure that would house the elevator.
This is a picture of the work in progress back in 2009. A structure like this needs to be perfect in ways I can only vaguely comprehend and won't go into here. Obviously, all the mechanical parts to be installed by the elevator company and the elevator itself have to fit in there, be quiet, and so on. And there was a concrete deck at the top of the stairs to be drilled through and the placement of several doors to be considered.
I believe it was a job where inches mattered. And, of course, the structure had to look as if it had been there as long as the house and it couldn't be disturbing to the neighbors.
In the end the idea, the design, the building, and the art all came together here.
I rode the elevator for the first time last week when we were in
. It was quiet and beautiful inside and when you reached the top, you stepped out into this lobby. Los Angeles
Fran told me she made the stained glass window for their beach house and had it moved to this perfect place. My husband built the rest of the entrance and installed the floor. Fran's gorgeous window was a finishing touch I bet my husband never got to his work before. What a pleasure it was to step out into this beautiful place. I can imagine it must make Fran and Bud feel really good to be greeted by such beauty every time they come home.
Upstairs Fran showed me her art and I took some pictures.
I was attracted to the bright colors of these paintings, but there was so much more to see. I guess I was a bit shy about wandering around taking photos the whole time, but I wish I had taken more. Fran had a whole series of small, delicate pen & ink drawings of Victorian houses that were just wonderful. I love things like that and now I can't share them, but they are a part of my memory.
I always liked old people's hands and these were beautiful.
And why not end at the beginning with this beautiful window. A great visit with two wonderful people who have been so helpful and kind to us. It was a pleasure to see your work Fran. And the ride in your elevator, Bud, was the highlight of my day in
. Thank you both. Los Angeles