This house and garden in Fargo, North Dakota, designed by Stahl Architects and Land Elements, was inspired by the work of Josef Albers and the stunning native prairie that surrounds the property. Our slide show tour of the house includes many additional web-only photos!
I’d seen snapshots of Dr. William Wosick’s home outside Fargo, North Dakota, but I wasn’t prepared for the impact it would have on me when I showed up to photograph it. After driving past identical-looking mini mansions perched amid tidy lawns — by far the dominant motif in this part of the Upper Midwest — I pulled up across the street from a striking cedar-and-steel-clad structure. It consisted of intersecting horizontal, vertical, and diagonal planes rising gracefully from an unusual tree-fringed landscape.
Before European settlers arrived in North America, prairie fires were a spectacular seasonal occurrence, usually ignited by lightning or Native American inhabitants before the spring rains and often raging for days across thousands of acres. The fires were a crucial part of the life cycle of these native grasslands, which once covered a vast, triangular swath of North America, from the eastern foothills of the Rockies east to the Ohio River Valley and tapering north into what is now Minnesota and Wisconsin.