A domed house built by a Frank Lloyd Wright apprentice just hit the market in Wisconsin — and the asking price is a cool $449,000.
As first reported by Curbed, the two-bedroom, two-bathroom property earned the moniker of the “Sunflower House” for its round structure and the petal-like awnings over the windows. Designed in 1952 by architect and one-time Wright apprentice James Dresser, it has many elements of Wright’s style — in particular, inspiration drawn from the natural world and its way of falling into the surrounding environment.
“The dome provides a sensation of height and airiness to the home because it vaults the ceiling in a uniquely organic fashion,” Jean Armendariz-Kerr, the Modern Mode Realty Network agent tasked with selling the home, told Inman. “It allows for a very open feel and height in basically every room.”
According to Armendariz-Kerr, Dresser is a well-known architectural name throughout the Midwest — he drew inspiration from the natural world and designed numerous local and national buildings such as the Lake Geneva Public Library and New York World’s Fair pavilion. At the start of his career, he worked as Wright’s apprentice at Taliesin in Spring Green, Wisconsin.
The 5126 Tomahawk Trl structure immediately jumps out due to its “mushroom,'” or domed, shape. It’s built through a radial framework of curved steel beams and has both the living room space and the bedroom inside the dome.
In the 1950s, the property was regularly featured in various architectural and home design magazines. But when it comes to selling similar types of homes, Armendariz-Kerr advises creativity — and, in particular, playing up the history and artistic vision of the home.
“Special homes like this one can either be misunderstood, or can be a compelling show-stopper depending on the willingness of the agent to be creative and to dig,” Armendariz-Kerr said. “When you take the effort to really present a narrative about a home, it helps buyers see themselves as part of the story of a place that is really special.”
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