This is the first of two posts about great houses on our street in Austin, both within two blocks of our home. The first is the Bohn house. It's a wild art deco style house that appears to be empty. Actually we know it is, as we’ve looked in the windows (though it is being renovated). Our L.A. friends mentioned that they think it belongs more in their town than in ours, and they could be right. I’ve seen nothing else like it around town. There are lots of curved walls and this cool circular design theme throughout the house.
Honestly, I thought the house was built in the 50s some time. Wrong. It was built in 1938 for Hubert & Alice Bohn, by Roy Thomas, who also built many other homes and great buildings around town, like the Stephen F Austin Hotel downtown. The word is that the house was inspired by The 1936 Sci Fi movie, Things To Come.
It looks like this is one of the first, if not THE first, Science Fiction movie to hit the big screen (like there were tons on the little screen?). Anyway, I got to thinking about the car show we went to in Detroit this summer. There was a 1950 Oldsmobile with a rocket as the hood ornament, and the word "Futuramic!" down the sides. I love this double up advertisement with the Olds and the mid century mod pad! It reminds me of the way Epcot's "Futureworld" interprets how the future will be, "In the year 2000"...
To see this shot from Things To Come lined up with the east side of the Bohn house, I'd say it's a safe bet that the the inspiration theory is true. It's nice to know there were those, even back in the prewar days, cranking out wildly designed houses that still look Futuramic today. I'm throwing this cherry on top. A sample of Max Frost & The Troopers 1968 hit Shape of Things to Come, since it's been in my head throughout this post.