link: The Minneapolis Institute of Arts Unified Vision: The Architecture and Design of the Prairie School
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Purcell-Cutts House
 link: Introduction
 link: The Site
 link: Exterior
 link: Entryway - Exterior
Site Plan
 link: 1st Floor
 link: 2nd Floor
 Nuts & Bolts
 Purcell's Own House Notes
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Introduction, page 2 of 3
Unified Design
Sullivan believed the design of a building should reflect the structure's place and time in history, as well as be compatible to its site and natural surroundings. Each structure should have a "system of ornament" that was consistent throughout, unifying the building. Purcell and Elmslie achieved this by using such progressive design elements as a nearly flat roof, an open plan, earthen colors, and banks of art-glass windows. Combining these elements with custom-designed furniture and artworks, they produced an architectural gem that suited the family's contemporary needs. next page >

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