PORTLAND MAGAZINE October 2008 Issue.


Maine Licensed Architect ARC580, NCARB Certificate

207-882-6305      james@schildrotharchitect.com
J A M E S   S C H I L D R O T H  A S S O C I A T E S,   A R C H I T E C T S

Maine + Florida + West Virginia+ Arizona

Now working with clients in Portland, Freeport and St. George, Orono, Maine and Florida.

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Residential architecture inspired by my clients and the natural sites on the coast of Maine.

This site is offered in support of the cause of Organic Architecture.   Frank Lloyd Wright, Bruce Goff and many other architects have influenced the Principles expressed in the architecture I have designed and built.

PORTLAND MAGAZINE October 2008 Issue.


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House in Naples, Maine, designed by architect James Schildroth, is a shimmering presence on Long Lake.  See "Long Lake Magic," pages 33.

A lakeside home in Naples conjures the spirit of Frank Lloyd Wright and all that's exciting about 'modern' and 'organic'.

By Brad Favreau

Twenty years ago, Khris and Barbara Klimek needed to relocate to New England due to Kris's job as a seafood broker.  They looked for a suitable place all over, until they visited Naples, saw a flash of blue, and knew intuitively they were home.  But houses for sale on Long Lake were"so traditional," when what they craved was excitement.


A former student at the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation, Schildroth developed a strong philosophy of organic architecture, similar to Wright's, blended with his own magic and sense of whimsy.

"I flex with the needs of the client and the conditions at the site," he explains.  This approach is the antithesis of shoe-horning a client into the rectangle of a faux-Colonial home.

While Barbara Klimek was excited about Frank Lloyd Wright, she was less sure about the master's penchant for low ceilings and very horizontal elements.  She envisioned high ceilings and a curved staircase, things Wright would probably never consider.

What would Schildroth do?

Strikingly, he has found a way to meet Klimek's desires, trump site constraints, and remain faithful to his own vision and the overall Wright-ian appeal of the home.

"It was exciting to watch it come together on paper and then to see it go up," Klimek says.

Most ingenious was Schildroth's angular deck as it took shape, cantilevered outward and reached out across the lake.  With its sharp noes jutting out toward the water, it conjures a boat's bow-but this is no kitschy gesture; it's business and beauty combined.  "The large deck projects away from the house so that from inside the house, it shields from view a neighboring cottage that would intrude on views of the lake," Schildroth explains.  Not only that, "an angled deck is easier to cantilever than a square deck."


The stone and wood of exterior are carefully manipulated with a mix of horizontal and vertical elements that anchor the house to its lakeside surroundings.  The house appears as if it were not simply built upon the site, but culled form deep below the earth.  It has a timeless aure about it.  Built in 1991, it looks as fresh today as the moment it was just finished.

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The grounds are full of carefully tended perennial beds, and the lake is just steps form the house.  "We have a small beach, and the boat's right outside," Klimek says. "WE can walk right out and go boating or swimming."  

"I feel incredible gratitude to have lived here," Klimek says. But life changes, and the Klimeks, with a yen to spend their retirement years traveling, have put their beloved home on the market, for $3.1 million.

Even lay people understand on an innate level the importance of the principles of organic architecture.  It just feels right.  This feeling was articulated by the recent visit of a regular house guest when she told her host, "Every time I come here, I feel renewed."  What's the going rate for that? 

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