Page 26 - Shared Vision

Basic HTML Version

14
using his own discretionary funds. Later on, Doubleday
published both books.
Bucky was wonderful with our children. He often baby-sat
and loved telling them stories, particularly at Halloween,
such as “The Gnomes That Lived in Domes.” He always
invited faculty from other universities as well as students
to stay at our house without ever giving us notice. He
loved “thinking aloud with them.” Bucky lived with us
until his dome home was built in April 1960. In the fall,
his wife Anne came to join him. We remained friends with
Bucky and Anne Fuller until their deaths.
AG: In some ways, Bucky and SIU put each other on the
map.
HLC: As far as national recognition, yes. As I said,
he was relatively unknown before his appointment.
And we helped him build his models and filled our
classrooms and courtyards with them. That made the
design department more visible, too. Bucky wrote several
support letters for me when I applied for grants. He liked
to give himself titles. In one of them, he called me his
student, which I never actually was, since he was not on
the faculty at the Institute of Design. But his spirit and
ideas certainly permeated the SIU design department, and
many of our students earned stipends working for him.
They did research for the World Game, built domes, and
did anything that needed doing. He had his headquarters
agency. One night at the Institute of Design, when she had
just begun to date me, she came to a Bucky lecture.
MC: Yes, since Bucky knew Harold and I were seeing one
another, he wanted to be sure that I jumped aboard his fan
wagon. He asked how I enjoyed his lecture. I told him the
first two hours were thrilling and I learned a lot. But the
next four were daunting. Too much verbiage, I said. Bucky
must have been impressed. Shortly thereafter, I began
reading and editing his works, and we became fast friends.
HLC: The summer of 1956 Bucky called me to say that
his apartment in Forest Hills, New York had burned and
that he had lost most of his models and slides. He was
desperate. He’d had no job for many years, relying on his
wife Anne’s inheritance for their livelihood. I told him to
hold on, that I’d get back to him within the week. I invited
him to come to SIU for a six-week session with students.
Morris and Shryock were impressed. Eventually, Morris
and I wrote up a contract wherein Bucky would spend a
stipulated portion of his time in Carbondale and was free
to lecture and tour wherever he wanted.
MC: Yes, and it gave him time to write again. He lived
with us. I edited two of his books,
No More Second Hand
God
and
Education Automation
. Vernon Sternberg of the
SIU Press at first refused to publish either book because
“they were not written in English,” but Harold and I
convinced President Morris to have the press publish them
Harold in first GSC 205 class
Bucky teaching in EFY
East St. Louis “Manscape” dome for EPEC, 1961
(Photo by Ben Gelman)