Continuing their excellent series on Vancouver architects and architecture, the West Vancouver Museum and Archives is offering a unique experience coming up in September: a tour of Arthur Erickson's 1958 Filberg Residence.
This much-published house is one of Erickson's earliest commissions and exhibits the arabesque tendencies that occasionally cropped up in his designs. It is a rarified pavilion that has a compelling, if heartbreaking story attached to it. Filberg commissioned the house but did not live to see its completion. His intention was that it become a meeting place for intellectuals and leaders, an ambitious vision that sadly never came to fruition. It was sold, eventually altered rather grotesquely and slipped into disrepair before a later owner fastidiously restored the house to its former glory.
Leaders and intellectuals presumably still don't congregate there, but the house remains a sublime work that sits on a high, south-facing bluff near Comox, looking out over the Straight of Georgia.
The West Vancouver Museum and Archives is offering a day trip to the house or an extended overnight package which allows visitors to experience it at dusk. The trip is being guided by photographer Simon Scott who worked closely with Erickson and photographed his buildings for the essential 1975 Tundra book "The Architecture of Arthur Erickson."
See the Museum and Archives website for details of the tour as well as other upcoming Erickson-related events.
Image: Christopher Erickson www.arthurerickson.com