Art: More Than Modern

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Stone's first opportunity to try out his theory in the U.S. came when he got the commission to draw the plans for the $19 million Palo Alto-Stanford Hospital and Stanford Medical Center. From his experience in designing the just completed $20 million Social Security Hospital for Employees (one of the world's largest) in Lima, Peru and his University of Arkansas Medical Center (which won an American Institute of Architects Honor Award in 1952), Stone knew a hospital is "the toughest problem in architecture. It's as if every room were either a kitchen, a bath, or a boiler room. It is not something you can design by remote control." Stone moved his main office to Palo Alto, taking Maria along. Two weeks later, as Stone puts it, their firstborn, Benjamin Hicks III, joined them.

Pills & Palace. Once on the site, Stone decided to take his architectural rhythm from Stanford University's low, Romanesque quadrangle. He laid out the medical complex in a low, three-story group within a 56-acre site, introduced inner landscaped courts, included sumptuous water gardens and fountains (see cut). To face the buildings, Stone designed a rough-surfaced grille of 3-ft. 8-in. units, carried it behind a 3Oo-ft.-long colonnade. Stone hopes the result, scheduled for completion in September 1959, will rival the beauty of Europe's great squares, and at the same time relate the buildings to the landscaped California campus.

In short order, Stone found himself flooded with clients eager to try his new romantic modern architecture. In the Stuart Co. building in Pasadena, Calif. (TIME, Jan. 20), Stone tried his grille as a solution to Southern California's climate, turned out a pill factory with such Tiffany & Co. glitter that one leading California architect said: "This building records all the gains of modern architecture and yet remains a romantic building." In a dormitory for the University of South Carolina, Stone, along with Architect Thomas Harmon, used the grille as a façade sheathing a monolithic block with housing for 250 students. Economically a success (bids on the building came in so far below estimate that the university doubled its order), the four-sided grille had an overpowering monotony, a fact Stone now acknowledges. He plans to re-study the top of the building, particularly he screen above the roof. No such reservations cloud Stone's opinion of the house resigned on ancient classical lines around central court, or atrium, which he completed this month (with Interior Designer ?. H. Robsjohn-Gibbings) for Bruno and "Josephine Graf in Dallas, Texas.

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