Create Your Own Frank Lloyd Wright Paper Cutouts With a New Book

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

A new book lets you recreate the intricate designs of Frank Lloyd Wright in paper. Frank Lloyd Wright Paper Models: 14 Kirigami Buildings to Cut Out and Fold, a forthcoming book from the London-based publisher Lawrence King, lets you fold and cut your way to architectural greatness, with templates to make paper cutouts of the famous architect’s most iconic works.

Directions for cutting and folding the Ennis House template
John Godwin

Kirigami is a Japanese art form that involves both cutting and folding paper, rather than folding alone. The book comes with templates that indicate where to cut and where to fold, with a simple four-step folding guide for each building. The results look not unlike the scale models that architects fabricate in their studios while designing buildings, though these require neither a workshop nor a 3D printer.

A white paper cut-out of Frank Lloyd Wright's Ennis House design
Lawrence King

You’ll need some dexterity with an X-Acto knife—some of those windows are intricate work—but the most delicate parts actually come pre-cut. You just remove the template from the book and work along the printed lines. In other words, you can achieve a miniature version of Frank Lloyd Wright’s genius without actually being any kind of genius.

The book includes templates for his most famous buildings, including Fallingwater and the Guggenheim Museum, as well as some buildings that may have faded from your memory, like the Ennis-Brown House, pictured above in both photographic and paper form.

Below is the Unity Temple, built in Oak Park, Illinois (where Wright lived for a large portion of his career) between 1905 and 1908.

A folded paper model of Frank Lloyd Wright’s Unity Temple
John Godwin

And here's the Millard House in Pasadena, California, one of Wright's first "textile block" houses.

A folded paper cut-out of Frank Lloyd Wright's Millard House
John Godwin

You can purchase the book for $20.

Cover of 'Frank Lloyd Wright Paper Models'
Lawrence King

[h/t Curbed]

Notre-Dame's Rooftop Bees Survived the Historic Fire

Dan Kitwood/Getty Images
Dan Kitwood/Getty Images

Following the fire that tore through Notre-Dame in Paris on April 15, fire officials shared that the church's bell towers, stone facade, and many of its precious artifacts had escaped destruction. But the building's centuries-old features weren't the only things threatened by the blaze: The three beehives on the roof of the cathedral were also at risk. Now, CNN reports that the bees of Notre-Dame and their homes have survived the historic fire.

Notre-Dame's beehives are a relatively recent addition to the site: They were placed on the first-floor rooftop over the sacristy and beneath one of the rose windows in 2013. Nicolas Geant, the church's beekeeper, has been in charge of caring for the roughly 180,000 Buckfast bees that make honey used to feed the hungry.

Most people weren't thinking of bees as they watched Notre-Dame burn, but when the fire was put out, Geant immediately searched drone photographs for the hives. While the cathedral's wooden roof and spire were gone, the beehives remained, though there was no way of knowing if the bees had survived without having someone check in person. Geant has since talked to Notre-Dame's spokesperson and learned that bees are flying in and out of the hives, which means that at least some of them are alive.

Because the beehives were kept in a section 100 feet below the main roof where the fire was blazing, they didn't meet the same fate as the church's other wooden structures. The hives were likely polluted with smoke, but this wouldn't have hurt the insects: Bees don't have lungs, so smoke calms them rather than suffocates them.

Notre-Dame's bees may have survived to buzz another day, but some parts of the building weren't so lucky. France has vowed to rebuild it, with over $1 billion donated toward the cause so far.

[h/t CNN]

The Hunchback of Notre-Dame Is the Best-Selling Book in France Right Now

Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images
Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

Thanks to current events, Victor Hugo's 188-year-old book The Hunchback of Notre-Dame has ascended the bestseller list in France. The novel follows a hunchback named Quasimodo who is living in the cathedral's bell tower in Paris during the 15th century. Now, following the fire that destroyed parts of Notre-Dame on Monday, April 15, readers in France are rushing to buy a copy, The Guardian reports.

Investigators aren't sure how the Notre-Dame fire started, but they suspect it resulted from an accident rather than arson or terrorism. The blaze consumed the structure's 800-year-old roof and iconic spire but left the stone facade, bell towers, and south rose window intact. France is already planning to rebuild the church, and so far $1 billion has been raised for the cause.

The Notre-Dame cathedral may not have become the beloved landmark it is today if wasn't for Victor Hugo. The Hunchback of Notre-Dame came out at a time when the cathedral was in disrepair, and by writing his book, Hugo hoped to revive interest in the historic piece of architecture. He did just that: In reaction to the novel's success, Notre-Dame underwent a massive restoration that lasted a quarter of a century. Many new elements were added, including that spire that was lost on Monday.

This week, the French people are returning to the book that's tied so deeply to Notre-Dame's reputation. On April 17, different editions of The Hunchback of Notre-Dame occupied the first, third, fifth, seventh, and eighth positions of the bestseller list of Amazon France. A book detailing the history of the Gothic cathedral claimed the sixth slot.

[h/t The Guardian]