Don't have the time or funds to take a trip to Scottsdale, Ariz., to see Frank Lloyd Wright's winter home and studio, Taliesin West? Well, that issue will no longer limit would-be visitors, thanks to the latest immersive online virtual experience released by the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation and Switzerland-based partner Leica Geosystems. Starting today, virtual visitors can explore the architectural site and its grounds online in 3D.
“True to our mission, the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation is dedicated to preserving Taliesin and Taliesin West for future generations," said Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation president and CEO Stuart Graff in a press release. "Through our partnership with Leica Geosystems, we’re able to carry our mission, and Wright’s vision, into the future, by making Taliesin West available to the world so they can experience his ideas, architecture, and design in new ways.”
To create this online experience, Leica partnered with Phoenix-based construction documentation services company Multivista, and Sunnyvale, Calif.–based 3D and virtual reality media company Matterport. Using Leica's 3D imaging laser scanner and Matterport's 3D camera, the team created 360-degree imagery of the site. Then, Matterport uploaded the data to its 3D Showcase technology, which enables users to "navigate immersive 3D versions of real-world spaces," according to the same release.
The interface—similar to Google Maps' Street View functionality—allows users to navigate the 81-year-old site and structures including the reflection pool, living areas, and even studio space utilized by students of the School of Architecture at Taliesin.
In the future, the foundation will have access to these assets for preservation and archival efforts. According to a representative on the project, the foundation has already committed to executing a similar digital capture of Wright's Taliesin estate in Wisconsin and hopes to make a virtual tour component available to the public by late fall.