Greycoats Invasion of Ralph Rapson's Glass Cube

Share this post Twitter Facebook Tumblr Email Posted September 11, 2014 in Architecture, Cave Chair, Cranbrook, Greenbelt, Loll Designs, Minneapolis, Minnesota Modern Cabins, Photography, Ralph Rapson, Rapson Architects, Rapson Cave Chair, Rapson Greenbelt Rocker, Rapson Rocker, Wisconsin Modern Cabins

Perched on the quiet bluffs above Wisconsin's Apple River, the iconic Rapson “Glass Cube” recently played host to a collaborative invasion by the Minneapolis-based band “Greycoats”, videographer Nate Matson, and numerous roadies. The event was part of Nate’s recent project “Spaces”, a series of music videos highlighting popular bands within their creative process; this was a foray out of the studio and into a visual and radical sound box.


Not only were the resident eagles soaring close for a curious look, a passing thunderstorm layered in some serious sound effects sure to please. We hope the sound man found its rumbling as opportune as we did, as we thought they added wonderfully to Greycoat’s engaging style that City Pages writer Rob Van Alstyne said shows an “appetite for the unusual”.


Ralph Rapson would have been intrigued by the use of what he considered his place of retreat. For over 30 years he welcomed others to share in its beauty and experience the tangible influence the rolling hills and his “cube” within those hills impart on the consciousness.  Adding in a little great music was a wonderful new twist. The fact that Greycoats are effectively the in-house band for high-energy Rapson retailer Forage Modern Workshop made the whole idea of the recorded jam session just too cool to pass up.



Lead singer Jon Reine appears contemplative and content while “taking five” in the Rapson Cave Chair by Loll Designs.      


The Rapson family has a new-found appreciation for the amount of equipment necessary to record, film, light, and create beautiful music. In turn, I hope the crew is appreciative of the clapping (for the great music) and slapping (as a result of the mosquito invasion that took place after hauling in and out said equipment). I fondly remember Ralph harping—“quick, close the screen doors before the local population joins us”. Thanks, Greycoats (Jon, Titus, Mike, and Matt) for an interesting day, and of course, thanks to Ralph for providing a great hang-out.




Nate Matson and the Greycoats setting up.



George Heinrich

Share this post Twitter Facebook Tumblr Email Posted May 05, 2013 in Architecture, Minneapolis, Minnesota, modern architecture, Photography, Ralph Rapson, Rapson Architects, Rapson Greenbelt Rocker, Rapson Rapid Rocker

George Heinrich is a Minneapolis based photographer whose exceptional work was much admired by Ralph. He has photographed for both the Children's Theater and the Jungle Theater. His photo's have graced the covers of Architecture Magazine and Architecture Minnesota. 

George also has a person connection to the Rapsons, and took a very nice set of portraits of Ralph late in life. Over the years he also photographed projects for Rapson Architects including the Pillsbury House and the U of MN 19th Street Parking Ramp. More recently George took pictures of Ralph's prototypes for Rapson-Inc's current furniture line. The photos below are all Heinrich work.

Ralph Rapson's personal Rapid Rocker with custom bentwood back.

Ralph Rapson's personal Rapson Rapid Rocker (with custom bentwood back).

Rapson-Inc. Greenbelt Rocker in custom black lacquer and hair-on-hide leather

Rapson-Inc. Greenbelt Rocker in custom black lacquer and hair-on-hide leather.

Rapson Architects' 19th Street Ramp

19th Street Parking Ramp, designed by Rapson Architects

Portrait of Ralph Rapson at the Pillsbury house by George Hienrich

Ralph Rapson at the Pillsbury House.

Visit George's webpage for more of his work:

George's work will be on display this Friday, May 10th at the Huscha Studio in Downtown Minnepolis. Stop by to support this excellent artist.

Friday May 10th, 2013
5:00 - 9:30 pm

700 South 3rd St, LL2
Minneapolis, MN 55415


Specifier Spotlight: Kurylowicz and Associates

Share this post Twitter Facebook Tumblr Email Posted May 11, 2012 in Architecture, Kurylowicz & Associates, mid-century, minneapolis, Modern furniture, poland, Rapson Rocker, Rapson-Inc., warsaw

A custom built Rapson Rocker has arrived to its new owner, Ms. Ewa Kurylowicz in Warsaw, Poland. Ms. Kurylowicz resides in the beautiful Nowe Powisle apartment complex, designed by her architectural firm, Kurylowicz & Associates. We are so pleased to share the photos she shared with us. The Rapson Rocker looks completely at home in its new surroundings. Shortly thereafter, her son Marek, wrote us, saying, "I had the pleasure to sit in the chair today. Great furniture. It's not a rocker only by name.

[photo credit: Ewa Kurylowicz, all rights reserved]

With over 70 employees on staff, Kurylowicz & Associates have a highly prolific profile. Much of their work is in the commercial sector, yet their structures are far from dull or run of the mill. As a practice, they seek to eliminate the too common division of social environments and commercial spaces. The Centre for Preventive Oncology in Warsaw is just one such example. The intent from inception was to create a calming sense of peace and harmony for patients. At the same time, the building emanates a message of superb care and technological advances. The pale silver exterior has a playful industrial aesthetic about it, accentuated by the Mario Bros geometrically shaped plots of grass in the surrounding landscape. The interior is light and airy, furnished with natural woods and vibrant space-age furniture. In turn, the atmosphere is a positive one, not one of boredom and dread that is so often felt in hospital waiting rooms.



[images credited to: Lukasz Czechowicz] 

Their adept, finely-tuned designs are not limited to large-scale projects. As mentioned in the preceding Q & A, the private house at Kazimierz was designed as a retirement home for Ewa and her late husband, and it currently serves as a weekend holiday home for the family. Although overtly modern in form and decor, the overall design pays tribute to the local historical building traditions. The natural lime stone walls, inside and out, along with the enormous wooden beams and ample wooden planking, create a tie between human habitation and nature. If it isn’t too early to dub a structure as neo-postmodern, this house is it. The forms are extruded, simplified and exaggerated, with a sort of light deconstructivist vibe. The stairways take on an almost structural quality, emphasizing the length and height of the house. Despite the oversized elements of the house, stairways, fireplace, ceiling beams, etc., and the actual large volume of the house, the spaces appear intimate and inviting, a feat that should not be under-acknowledged.

[images credited to: Kurylowicz & Associates, all rights reserved]

Caroline Engel for Rapson-Inc.


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