DIGITAL DOCUMENTATION OF FRANK LLOYD WRIGHT’S MASTERPIECE, FALLINGWATER
Since 1988, the professional staff of Architectural Preservation Studio (APS) has been involved with the conservation of Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater in Mill Run, PA. Designed and erected from 1935 to 1939 as a weekend home for the Kauffman family, the complex consists of the main house and guest house.
After five years of reports and prototype repairs, we produced a two-volume master plan. Using original Frank Lloyd Wright drawings from Avery Library as background drawings, we measured every surface and reproduced the drawings in CAD, also developing elevations of every room. Stone-by-stone drawings of every flagstone floor and terrace scheduled to be lifted were also created using overlapping film photography that was assembled into a photo mosaic. By 2005, we designed, administered and completed a four-phase exterior restoration, with the paint-stripping and repainting of interior rooms being performed during the brief winter period when the building is closed to the public on an ongoing basis.
In 2016, we were invited back to the site to review conditions and advise on routine maintenance. At that time we proposed to re-document the buildings, this time using laser-scanning. Laser-scanning of the exterior was performed in May of 2016, and of the interior in March 2017, each over the course of four days. This paper will make a comparison between manual and digital techniques in terms of Fallingwater’s documentation.