Mark Parry – Inspirational Influences - a heritage in design

Mark Parry’s interest in architecture, construction, and place-making began at the age of seven. At an early age Mark would review construction sites and take weekend tours of model homes. Mark’s passion for architecture grew rapidly. Studies at Arizona State University and a summer of graduate studies at the C. U. A. in Washington D.C., augmented by travel throughout the United States, Italy, and Greece created an image bank of exceptional depth.

Mark has practiced an eclectic form of architectural expression born from the influence of these prominent architects:

Frank Lloyd Wright

Mark was on staff at Taliesin Associated Architects working on studio projects and served as a docent and volunteer for its archives from 1986-1988. This afforded him a rare opportunity to dive into the heart of Frank Lloyd Wright’s philosophies and designs, and to experience his architecture first hand. He learned lessons in the control of light, and space, honesty of materials, and the tenets of organic architecture, a site-driven architectural expression. Mr. Parry observed that Wright created a whole new language of architecture. To speak this language he utilized a particular vocabulary (aesthetic). Mark learned how to speak the language of organic architecture, which creates spaces that live and breathe, without being confined to Wright’s aesthetic.

Bruce Goff (1904-1982)

A philosophy of Mr. Goff’s was the appreciation of the heart and fantasies and visions of his clients. The same attitude imbues Mark Parry’s work; each work is client-driven in its aesthetic and stylistic direction. This is not “design by fiat” but a collaborative development toward a shared vision.

Calvin C. Straub (1920-1998)

Mark Parry was the last associate of Calvin C. Straub. Considered by many to be the father of California post and beam architecture and a second-generation California craftsmen architect, he was also a professor of Architecture at ASU and USC. He had prominent firms in California and Arizona. Buff, Straub, and Hensman participated in the Case Study Program (#20,28). The firm was widely published in Sunset Magazine and other national and international publications. As Cal’s last associate, Mark benefited from the final “down-loading” years of Cal’s career and gleaned profound insights from this rare and delightful man.

From Cal, Mark received lessons on quality design detailing, systematic design, and the tenets of the craftsman architect. He learned to appreciate that the architect is to be first and foremost the professional. Cal was a truly great human being who understood that living places come from lives lived, not just ideas. Mr. Straub promoted a world-wise approach to architecture and was influenced by his extensive world travels. Cal’s contribution to modern architecture was the integration of the international style open space while maintaining the warmth and humanity of the craftsmen ideal through the use of a Japanese aesthetic. He was a gift to the world.

Andre Palladio (1508-1580)

The premier Italian renaissance architect mark was influenced through the study of his work and drawings while participating in an overseas study program.

Carlo Scarpa (1906-1978)

The prominent Italian Modernist was recognized for his deeply detailed and refined designs.

Mr. Parry went to Italy in the summer of 1985 to tour the work of Carlo Scarpa. During the summer study program led by then ASU professor Lisa Findley, Mark also encountered the work of André Palladio. It was the influence of Palladio that birthed a love of classic proportions and elements. It was the refined detailing of the work of Carlo Scarpa that birthed an appreciation of the power of materials to define space. Carlo Scarpa expressed each material and defined clearly the transitions from one to another. He refined his designs from the whole to the minutest part, creating an integrated composition. His designs reflected the ultimate in contemporary composition and detailing: a whole created by distinctive layering of its constituent parts. He was a Master in the development of the finishes to express space.

The following links are to sites of Architects who’s work is of continuing interest:

Bernard Maybeck

Louis Barragan

Robert A.M. Stern

Julia Morgan

Antoine Predock
Austrian Secessionists

Eddy Jones Jone’s Studio