Home > Our Philosophy > Art is a Way, 4/3/05
david bagwell philosophies Bagwell Colleyville/Dallas TX communities  


Artisan Builders Realize Venerated Architectural Styles in a Trio of Bagwell Company Neighborhoods.

  This Cary Clarke home demonstrates the classic design principles, use of materials, craftsmanship, and landscaping that give Whittier Heights its Sense of Place.

"Art is not a thing. It's a way," said Elbert Hubbard, a pillar of the American Arts and Crafts Movement in architecture.

The way homes become art in the Colleyville developments of the David Bagwell Company is through collaboration. Each development has an architectural control committee with expertise in design, building, and landscaping of fine homes. These committees create aesthetic guidelines to achieve homes with enduring character and nostalgic appeal. Committee members work closely with a select group of builders and their designers on various aspects of the exterior of each home.

Architect and Committee Member Robin McCaffrey explained the purpose of guidelines, "Human beings instinctively seek to impose order on chaos. We find satisfaction in order. When we achieve order, we interpret it as beauty. What we deem to be ugly simply does not fulfill our need for beauty."

Bagwell elaborated further about standard setting for his developments, "Without reference to the defining elements of venerated architectural styles, there can be a chaotic result that critics call the 'Frankenhouses' of suburban America. We aspire to homes that by their evocative appeal help give each neighborhood a Sense of Place."

With that in mind, architectural control committees for Whittier Heights, Old Grove at Whittier Heights, and Benedict Hill at Westmont have endorsed a variety of popular architectural styles grounded in historical precedent. Accordingly they have developed aesthetic guidelines that identify the design forms, materials, fixtures, and artisanship necessary to realize these styles and avoid eclectic mongrelizing.

Even so, no neighborhood achieves aesthetic distinction unless fine homebuilders and designers pursue their craft there. As Nineteenth Century author John Burroughs explained in The Art of Seeing Things, "The science of anything may be taught or acquired by study. The art of it comes by practice or inspiration. The art of seeing things is not something that may be conveyed in rules and precepts. It is a matter vital in the eye and ear, yea, in the mind and soul, of which these are the organs. I have as little hope of being able to tell someone how to see things as I have in trying to tell them how to fall in love or to enjoy their dinner. Either they do, or they do not. That is about all there is of it. Some people seem born with eyes in their heads, and others with buttons or painted marbles. No amount of science can make the one equal to the other in the art of seeing things."

While Bagwell acknowledges that beauty is in the eye of the beholder, he says, “We’re fortunate to work with a coterie of inspired builders who see homes as art and collaborate with us to create it.”

Homebuyers are invited to see the pleasing results of homes from $450K built by this collaborative process in Whittier Heights, Old Grove at Whittier Heights, and Benedict Hill at Westmont on McDonwell School Road in northwest Colleyville. For more information, contact Susan Folkert at 214/673-6754 or go to www.bagwellcompany.com.

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