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May 5, 2011

Ever wonder what an artist's home would look like if he or she were the mind behind it? This month, Abrams has published a stunning new coffee table book that peeks inside the abodes of 13 well-known, American craftspeople who built their homes themselves. Appropriately titled Artists' Handmade Houses, the book features beautiful images by Don Freeman and text by Michael Gotkin. Here we look at the homes of Russel Wright, Paolo Soleri, and George Nakashima.

Sculptor, ceramist, and tableware designer Russel Wright built his home in Garrison, New York, in the 1950s. Design influences from Japan stemmed from a trip to Asia in 1955. The kitchen, shown here, features windows that look out upon rocks that lead up
Sculptor, ceramist, and tableware designer Russel Wright built his home in Garrison, New York, in the 1950s. Design influences from Japan stemmed from a trip to Asia in 1955. The kitchen, shown here, features windows that look out upon rocks that lead up to Wright's studio. The ceramics are nearly all of his design.
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On the land, which Wright dubbed Manitoga, he planted and cultivated native trees and wove stone paths around them. He diverted a river into an abandoned quarry, creating a pool that his daughter named Dragon Rock, as she "likened the place where pool met
On the land, which Wright dubbed Manitoga, he planted and cultivated native trees and wove stone paths around them. He diverted a river into an abandoned quarry, creating a pool that his daughter named Dragon Rock, as she "likened the place where pool met stone to a dragon drinking from a pond," Gotkin writes in the book.
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Organic architecture at its best: The sunken dining room features boulders and a more than one-hundred-year-old tree trunk that acts as the main support for the southeast corner of the house.
Organic architecture at its best: The sunken dining room features boulders and a more than one-hundred-year-old tree trunk that acts as the main support for the southeast corner of the house.
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Architect Paolo Soleri lives in a wood-frame house in his Cosanti complex (which includes his home, office, and workshop) in Scottsdale, Arizona. Soleri was a student of Frank Lloyd Wright and the influence of the master's organic architecture is clear in
Architect Paolo Soleri lives in a wood-frame house in his Cosanti complex (which includes his home, office, and workshop) in Scottsdale, Arizona. Soleri was a student of Frank Lloyd Wright and the influence of the master's organic architecture is clear in the outside dining room and work space in the southern courtyard (shown here).
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The cantilevered table continues inside Soleri's house. The large windows, doors, and skylights fill the space with light in winter and softly illuminate it through trees' leaves in summer.
The cantilevered table continues inside Soleri's house. The large windows, doors, and skylights fill the space with light in winter and softly illuminate it through trees' leaves in summer.
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In the bathroom, a ceramic light hangs above the double sinks. The door on the right leads to the bathtub and shower, the wall of which acts as the back of the fireplace in the next room and provides radiant heat in the winter.
In the bathroom, a ceramic light hangs above the double sinks. The door on the right leads to the bathtub and shower, the wall of which acts as the back of the fireplace in the next room and provides radiant heat in the winter.
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American furniture designer George Nakashima made his home in New Hope, Pennsylvania. "Nakashima embraced construction as a kind of improvisation, noting that 'the house was built without plans, and the detailing was developed from the material on hand or
American furniture designer George Nakashima made his home in New Hope, Pennsylvania. "Nakashima embraced construction as a kind of improvisation, noting that 'the house was built without plans, and the detailing was developed from the material on hand or that which was available,'" Gotkin writes. "It is the unlikely marriage between American vernacular influences and Japanese sensibilities, along with a willingness to embrace the engineered forms of the modern age, that lends Nakashima's work its beauty and vitality."
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In one house, a small kitchen features a cupboard with sliding shoji screens.
In one house, a small kitchen features a cupboard with sliding shoji screens.
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The living room in Nakashima's Reception House features several Greenrock ottomans and a Buckeye burl coffee table. The complex also includes a pool, arched pool house, workshop barn, and studio, among other structures.
The living room in Nakashima's Reception House features several Greenrock ottomans and a Buckeye burl coffee table. The complex also includes a pool, arched pool house, workshop barn, and studio, among other structures.
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<i>Artists' Handmade Houses</i> is available from Abrams and also features the homes of nine other artists. Learn more at <a href="http://www.abramsbooks.com/Books/Artists__Handmade_Houses-9780810995840.html">abrambooks.com</a>.<br /><br /><p><em><strong>
Artists' Handmade Houses is available from Abrams and also features the homes of nine other artists. Learn more at abrambooks.com.

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Sculptor, ceramist, and tableware designer Russel Wright built his home in Garrison, New York, in the 1950s. Design influences from Japan stemmed from a trip to Asia in 1955. The kitchen, shown here, features windows that look out upon rocks that lead up
Sculptor, ceramist, and tableware designer Russel Wright built his home in Garrison, New York, in the 1950s. Design influences from Japan stemmed from a trip to Asia in 1955. The kitchen, shown here, features windows that look out upon rocks that lead up to Wright's studio. The ceramics are nearly all of his design.

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