Monday, July 20, 2009

Indianapolis Midcentury Modern Home

This weekend, I had the distinct pleasure of meeting architect J. Parke Randall at a party in one of the Midcentury Modern homes he designed. Randall is best known in Indianapolis for his work on the City County building during his time with the architectural firm Wright, Porteous, and Associates. He also designed a number of spectacular midcentury homes in the Indianapolis area. Influenced by Frank Lloyd Wright, but also fashioning his own ideas on living with nature, Randall said he designed his houses on a pedestal from which to observe nature. He had no intention of living like "Tarzan and Jane" as he put it, however he still wanted to be a removed observer. Thus, the house is built on a platform that appears to float in the trees and has a full wall of windows on the back, a vantage point that gives one an ideal perch to see the birds and other wildlife.
The home had fallen into disrepair before the current home owner purchased it three years ago. In a short time, she has managed to revive the character, beauty, and functionality Randall created over fifty years ago. When asked about the renovation, Randall positively radiated his joy at seeing the house he designed brought back to life and enjoyed.

As you can see from the pictures, Randall gave the homeowner (to the right of Randall in the group photograph) original pencil drawings of the home's design. He also gave her contact sheets of images he took during the home's construction. The homeowner has given the Archive copies of these, which appear below.

Many thanks to Atomic Indy which coordinated this party, the first in the Atomic Crash Indy party series. (Atomic Indy founder, Baz ,is to the left of Randall in the group photograph ) If you're interested in Midcentury Modern or seeing more tour pictures of the house, I highly recommend reading their blog at

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