Rare in Eau Claire, this Moderne residence reflects a 1930s fascination with spare geometric design. Local architects Bayer and Nelson gave the house a boxy, almost cubic form, reflecting a transition from Moderne to International Style. They created a flat-roofed block, scoring its stucco-clad walls with horizontal lines. These continue to the side and rear, where they give way to casement windows wrapping around the back corner. The house presents an almost blank face to passersby, for only four casement windows and a door-way pierce the front, and the addition that Playter designed has no front-facing windows at all. The addition, continuing from the front to the side and rear, echoes the incised lines and casements of the original house, but it conveys a stronger International Style emphasis. Playter toyed with conventional window configurations by placing transoms below the casements rather than above them. And instead of the cantilevered canopies that an architect might have installed over windows and doors in the 1930s, he used abstract, geometric grilles. Still, the essential sympathy between the addition and the original house reveals a close affinity between Moderne and more abstract geometric design.
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Darrell and Sarah Hibbard House
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