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Harwell Harris Houses - Eisenberg House, Dallas (1958)

George Smart

Silent | 1958

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  •  Back porch, steps, and details of the roof 
  •  Exterior view of the side of the house and wooded yard 
  •  Alternate exterior view of the back steps and entrance 
  •  Panned view of the front of the house; exterior with driveway and pergola covered entrance 
  •  Details of pergola beams and trellis at the entrance 
  •  The Eisenberg children play outside in the driveway and on the trellis  
  •  Exterior view of driveway and entrance 
  •  Exterior view of the side of the house; porch and sloped elevation 
  •  Back patio and steps from a different angle; structural details; view of the house and wooded yard 
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  • About the video
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This footage documents the exterior of the Seymour and Jean Eisenberg House, designed by famed architect Harwell Harris, in Dallas. The home is on a sloped, wooded lot, where the house sits tucked away from view. Its modernist architecture combines wood and terra cotta orange brick to blend with the landscape and highlight the natural beauty of the land. Features include a flat roof, wooden porte-cochère, floor-to-ceiling windows, a redwood deck, a built-in bar and hi-fi, and a “Juliet Balcony” for the Eisenbergs’ daughter. The footage also includes brief scenes of the Eisenberg children playing in front of their new home.
Harwell Hamilton Harris was born in 1903 in Redlands, California. He spent his early adulthood in Los Angeles where he began art school for sculpting until he visited Frank Lloyd Wright's Hollyhock House, and his career path changed to that of architecture. Harris never completed any formal architecture education, instead learning on the job at the offices of renowned architects Richard Neutra and Rudolph Schindler. Harris left to establish his own firm in L.A. in 1933, working on small modular homes to which he applied the modernist architecture principles he learned under Neutra and Schindler. He taught at Columbia University for one year and in 1952, accepted the position of Dean of the School of Architecture at the University of Texas. He expanded the school's programs and teaching methods, offering students hands-on design and construction experience on projects such as the Texas State Fair House (1954). Harris hired faculty whose innovative ideas and reputations garnered them nickname of the "Texas Rangers" in the architecture world. Harris' methods became a source of tension at UT, and he resigned in 1955. He moved to Dallas and established a private practice where he built modern homes adapted to the Texas landscape and climate. Harris' work received numerous awards throughout his career, and appeared in many exhibitions, including ones at the Museum of Modern Art and the National Gallery of Art. Harris passed away in 1990, leaving his drawings and design material to the Center for the Study of American Architecture at the University of Texas at Austin.