A midcentury residence in the style of Frank Lloyd Wright is now on the market in Brookfield, Wisconsin, a suburb of Milwaukee. Completed in 1955, the home was designed by local architect John Randall McDonald, whose work often emulated Wright but omitted excessive ornamentation to save on costs. As this home shows, McDonald opted for minimalist finishes, such as simple wood cladding and built-ins, while implementing a generous fenestration plan to integrate the structure with the site.
This recently listed home was designed by Wisconsin-born architect John Randall McDonald and is situated on a wooded 1.2-acre lot about 15 miles outside of Milwaukee. A single horizontal plane extends from the rectangular structure to form a carport and mark the main entrance.
Inside, the floor plan cleanly splits public and private spaces between two levels, with the living area offering expansive floor-to-ceiling windows and a double-height fireplace that extends upward into an open space. In the corner, stacked stone forms an alcove that features built-ins.
McDonald-who studied under Louis Kahn, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, and other modernist masters at Yale University in the 1940s-designed hundreds of structures throughout his decades-long career, continuing to practice until his death in 2003. At one point, he became well known for delivering the stylings of Frank Lloyd Wright at a comparatively affordable price.
According to the Wisconsin Historical Society, this particular home is one of five by McDonald that was designed and built in Brookfield, although his body of work stretches from Utah to New York. He also reportedly designed homes for celebrities, such as Mickey Mantle, James Garner, and Maureen O'Hara.
Another view of the living area shows how the space extends into the dining room and kitchen, both of which are sunlit by a wall of floor-to-ceiling windows.
The modernized kitchen features new hickory cabinets, as well as custom epoxy countertops and floors, according the the listing. Original features include the wood-clad ceiling and walls.
This midcentury by McDonald offers just over 3,000 square feet of interior space, including four bedrooms and three bathrooms. The second level features a bookshelf-lined hallway that runs the length of the house, as well as a parallel balcony that connects to each bedroom along the rear facade.
Modern changes include updated bathrooms and a revamped kitchen, as well as restored terrazzo floors and system upgrades. Keep scrolling to see more of the property, currently listed for $369,000.
Upstairs, a long hallway runs the length of the home and connects each of the four bedrooms. New bamboo flooring flanks the original wood-clad walls in each of the rooms.
At one end of the hall, a bedroom overlooks the living area below. A door offers direct access to the balcony that runs across the rear of the home.
Another stop along the long hallway reveals one of the home’s three bathrooms.
South-facing windows fill each bedroom with an abundance of natural light.
One of the larger bedrooms is located at the opposite end of the hall.
Back downstairs, a secondary living area and office sits opposite the kitchen.
A view of the rear facade shows the second-level balcony, as well as the many access points from the lower level to the wooded backyard.
Another perspective of the carport shows the front facade, which remains void of nearly any windows. Dense greenery around the home hides it from the street.
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