Paul Rudolph, mid-century architect, learned the use of efficient spacing when working as an naval architect during World War II. When he moved to Sarasota, FL, he used what he had learned about light-shell construction and began to specialized in the airy Bauhaus-on-the-beach homes that became a hallmark of the style now known as Sarasota Modern. The unique design suited Florida’s climate; the houses were designed to provide shade; the typically had deep overhangs, open plans, sliding doors, and plenty of patios and verandas. These homes have an airy feel due to the little separation between indoor and outdoor spaces. The materials used to create these houses are very simple and inexpensive. Yet the building’s geometric design is what makes the building so beautiful.
The Walker Guest House, which Rudolph built in private practice, was his favorite. Located on Florida’s Sanibel Island’s, 24 by 24-ft cottage sits among sand dunes, and has glass walls on each side that are shaded by wooden panels that can be raised and lowered by ropes and pulleys. “It crouches like a tiger in the sand,” Rudolph once said of it.