About Stranahan House
“Houses are more than mere shelter,” notes Jack Kelly, WPBT2’s Vice President of Production, “They are the result of vision and the reflection of different personalities as they embody the collective spirits of owners, architects and designers. Historic structures stand as a cultural testament to a particular age and architectural style”.
The Stranahan House is a half-hour documentary that tells the story of both the house and Frank and Ivy Stranahan. The program offers an entertaining mix of archival photographs, on-location visuals, rich narratives and interviews with Alice Cromartie Stafford, Ivy’s niece; Historian and FAU professor Harry Kersey, author of “The Stranahans of Fort Lauderdale,” Catherine von Dullen, an architectural historian who was involved with the 1980s restoration of the house, and Max Osceola, the Hollywood representative for the Seminole Tribe of Florida Council. “This documentary,” says Barbara Keith, Executive Director of Stranahan House, Inc. “will provide a wonderful blend of history and architecture. Additionally, viewers will learn the value of historic preservation and its vital role as a cultural resource.” The program will air on October 31st at 10:30 p.m.
Documentary filmmaker Corley, who has a background in the arts, decorative arts and architecture, has long been drawn to the enchantment, the mystery and the beauty of Vizcaya. "I thought long and hard about it and it is an amazing story, from its envisioning to its completion," said Corley. "When people visit the house, they ooh and aah about the paintings, carpets, tapestries, etc., but visitors don't seem to understand what it took to build the house."
In order to tell the story of Vizcaya, Corley conducted extensive interviews with a wide array of sources: authors Witold Rybczynski and Laurie Olin; historian Arva Moore Parks; University of Miami professor of Architecture Joanna Lombard, and Vizcaya curator Flaminia Gennari-Santori.
Overcoming immense obstacles to its building and ongoing challenges, Vizcaya has indelibly imprinted itself upon the history and culture of South Florida. Said Vizcaya Executive Director Joel Hoffman: "Vizcaya has endured many challenges from its creation through to its ongoing preservation. We are now the stewards of this local treasure and National Historic Landmark. And we are pleased to have the opportunity to share the story of James Deering's extraordinary estate with people around the world."
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