County of Marin - News Releases - Frank Lloyd Wright Event

For Immediate Release
November 15, 2016

Historian Speaks on Frank Lloyd Wright’s Local Ties

Paul V. Turner appears November 30 at Showcase Theater in San Rafael

San Rafael, CA – A renowned expert on Frank Lloyd Wright is coming to Marin Center to speak about the architect’s largest and last work, the Marin County Civic Center, as well as other noted Wright designs in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Paul Walker speaks into a microphone at a special event in the Marin County Civic Center Board Chamber in 2013.Paul V. Turner is a professor emeritus from Stanford University.

Former Stanford University professor and author Paul V. Turner will speak about his new book, Frank Lloyd Wright and San Francisco, at 7 p.m. Wednesday, November 30, at the Showcase Theater. The event co-hosts are the Marin County Department of Cultural Services and the Marin County Free Library.

Turner’s new book details all the projects Wright designed in the Bay Area – roughly 30, a third of which were built – including the five he did for Marin County. Spanning 1900 to 1959, the designs include private homes, a gift shop, a civic center, a post office, a skyscraper, a church, an industrial building, a mortuary, and a bridge across San Francisco Bay. Wright (1867–1959) often spent time in San Francisco, which he called “the most charming city in America.”

Turner, the Wattis Professor of Art, Emeritus in the department of art and art history at Stanford, will shed light on Wright’s complex relationships with his clients. The book touches on previously unpublished correspondences between Wright and his patrons, as well as his Bay Area associate Aaron Green. Stories from San Francisco newspapers portray the media’s changing positions on Wright — from his early personal scandals to his later roles as eccentric provocateur and celebrated creative genius. Beautifully illustrated with the architect’s original drawings and plans, Frank Lloyd Wright and San Francisco highlights aspects of the architect’s career that have never before been explored. 

The Marin County Civic Center was commissioned in 1957 and built on the former Scettrini Ranch in the Santa Venetia area of San Rafael. The Administration Building, completed in 1962, and Hall of Justice, completed in 1969, were the only government buildings he ever built aside from the post office just across Civic Center Drive.

Turner’s November 30 appearance is sponsored by the Friends of the Civic Center Library, the Anne T. Kent California Room, Marin County Cultural Services, and the Frank Lloyd Wright Civic Center Conservancy.

Turner’s talk will be followed by a book signing session courtesy of Copperfield’s Books. Tickets are $15 and can be obtained at For more information, call 415-473-6800.


Libby Garrison
Marketing and Communications Director
Department of Cultural Services

Marin Center
10 Avenue of the Flags
San Rafael, CA 94903
(415) 473-6014
Email: Libby Garrison
Cultural Services Website