Ralph Twitchell

Ralph Twitchell (1890-1978) was born in Mansfield, Ohio, and first became acquainted with Florida when his mother brought his family down south every winter.
He studied architecture at Rollins College and pursued graduate study at McGill University in Montreal, Canada, and then Columbia University in New York. During World War I, Twitchell was a test pilot and sustained multiple injuries that left him almost dead. Twitchell first came to Sarasota in 1925 to supervise the construction of John Ringling’s “Ca d’Zan” for New York architect Dwight James Baum.
Until 1936, Twitchell spent his summers in Connecticut and his winters in Sarasota, eventually moving full-time to Sarasota and establishing his own architectural practice and construction company.
Ralph Twitchell
Revere Quality House, Architect: Paul Rudolph, Photo: Jenny Acheson
Revere Quality House
Photo: Jenny Acheson
Inspired by the modern architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright, Twitchell experimented with reinforced concrete and the Art Deco style in the 1940s. Just before World War II, in April 1941, Twitchell employed the recent Auburn University graduate Paul Rudolph as a draftsman, who would later become an associate and then full partner, founding the “Sarasota School of Architecture.” Twitchell and Rudolph split in 1951. Twitchell would later partner with Jack West and his son Tollyn, practicing architecture well into the 1970s.

FUN FACT: Twitchell was kicked out of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) in 1935 because he simultaneously ran an architect’s practice and a construction company. In practice, this did not matter much because at that time the AIA was merely a club and not the regulatory body that it is today.

Architecture by Ralph Twitchell

News about Ralph Twitchell Architecture

Revere Quality House, Architect: Paul Rudolph, Photo: Wayne Eastep

Upcoming House Tours

Join us on a tour of the Revere Quality House, Cocoon House and the Umbrella House in July – September, 2021. You can purchase your tickets below…

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Exciting News for Architecture in Sarasota

We are pleased to announce that the Center for Architecture Sarasota and the Sarasota Architectural Foundation are joining forces to create one organization called Architecture Sarasota, to be led by Executive Director Anne-Marie Russell.

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Featured Architects and Designs

Revere Quality House
Paul Rudolph
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Healy Guest House ("Cocoon House")
Paul Rudolph, 1950
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Hugh Given House
Philip Hanson Hiss, 1951
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Hiss Studio
Edward "Tim" Siebert, 1952
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Walker Guest House
Paul Rudolph, 1952
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Sanderling Beach Club
Paul Rudolph, 1952
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Umbrella House
Paul Rudolph, 1953
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Cohen Residence
Paul Rudolph, 1955
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DeVries/Craig Residence
Edward "Tim" Siebert, 1955
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Martin Harkavy House
Paul Rudolph, 1957
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Deering Residence
Paul Rudolph, 1957
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Burkhardt Residence
Paul Rudolph, 1957
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Warm Mineral Springs Inn
Victor Lundy, 1958
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Maurice Birk House
Philip Hanson Hiss, 1959
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Mrs. Adelia Dolan House
Philip Hanson Hiss, 1959
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Scott Building
Joseph Farrell
and William Rupp, 1960
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Plymouth Harbor
Frank Folsom Smith
and Louis F. Schneider, 1966
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Victor Lundy, 1969
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Casa De Cielo
Carl Abbott - 1982
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Saul & Florence Putterman Residence
Carl Abbott, 1986
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Chapell-Lifeso House
Donald C. Chapell, 2000
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