SAF House Tour + Talk: Elvgren Residence with Christopher Wilson

  • Saturday, June 29, 2019
  • 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM
  • 7501 Midnight Pass Rd, Sarasota, FL 34242
  • 0


SAF House Tour + Talk:
Victor Lundy's Elvgren Residence with Christopher Wilson, PhD

Registration is currently closed due to parking limitations.

Join SAF for a visit to the Elvgren Residence, a 1959 Victor Lundy design currently for sale. Tour the home and enjoy a talk with architecture and design historian Christopher Wilson, PhD.

About The Elvgren Residence

Renowned illustrator Gil Elvgren (1914-1980), the “Norman Rockwell of pin-up art,” commissioned Victor Lundy in 1959 to design a home on Siesta Key for his young family and an art studio for himself. Elvgren wanted a private space for the adults, a studio to work and entertaining space for the three children. Built for about $50,000 at that time, the home was designed using simple and exposed materials such as Ocala masonry block, cedar beams and terrazzo flooring. The roof of the home sits delicately on beams and columns independent of the walls, allowing clerestory windows to surround the entire home and provide natural daylight in every room.

Published in Architectural Record August 1960, the home was described as follows:

"The site of the Elvgren House is a secluded and tropical waterfront one, on Siesta Key in Sarasota, Florida. The house is set well back from the approach and one comes on it from out of a “jungle” into its clearing at the water’s edge. Thus, there is a sense of privacy leading to indoor-outdoor planning on the east and west fronts. The plan itself derives out of the owners’ desire to make the most of the sea view: the central living area stretches out parallel to the beach, and the two bedroom wings angle off so that each room gets a view of the water and the benefit of the breezes from the bay.

"The structural system for the house is a fairly simple, but interesting one, with all trusswork, supporting beams and columns carefully articulated and exposed. Each member is composed of standard lumbar sizes in combination, and designed so that each piece is seen. To brighten the living area, which might be otherwise too dark because of the wide porch overhands, the roof beams are continued up on the approach side of the house to form a continuous sky-light. At night, a continuous light troffer along this clerestory throws light up against the living room ceiling. The roof structure is completely independent of the exterior and interior walls, which stop at door height, with glass over. All of the wood structure, ceiling, etc., is finished in a natural fruitwood tone. Floors are terrazzo throughout. Exterior masonry walls are buff-colored concrete block; the fireplace wall is local coquina stone.”

"About the design, the architect states, 'It is an informal house and one feels about it that little children, dogs and parakeets are welcome, as well as people.’ “

Interested in the property? More info on the listing

About Christopher Wilson; BArch, MA, PhD 

Dr. Christopher S. Wilson teaches architecture and design history at Ringling College of Art and Design. He has been a board member of the Sarasota Architectural Foundation since 2012 and currently serves as Board Chair.

Originally from Philadelphia, PA, Wilson earned a bachelor’s degree in architecture from Temple University, a Master of Arts degree from The Architectural Association, London, England, and a Ph.D. from Middle East Technical University in Ankara, Turkey. Before entering the world of academia, Wilson worked as an architect in Philadelphia, Berlin, and London, and is registered with the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA).

His book, Beyond Anitkabir: The Construction and Maintenance of National Memory (Ashgate Press, 2013), narrates the story of the five architectural constructions that have housed the dead body of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the first president of Turkey. Wilson has most recently written the Sarasota chapter in a monograph on the life and work of Sarasota School architect Victor Lundy, Victor Lundy: Artist Architect by Donna Kacmar, 2018. This book is available for purchase in the MOD Shop. Order online:

While there is no admission fee, please register in advance to share the love of architecture and support SAF's mission to educate, advocate and celebrate the Sarasota School. Suggested day-of donation: $15. Thank you for your support! 


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