Design and the Arts Special Collections

Containing textual records, architectural drawings, presentation boards, project files, this collection emphasizes desert-sensitive design and the development and evolution of midcentury and modern architecture in the Southwest.

Collection highlights

View of the Arizona Biltmore Hotel, shortly after its opening in 1929.

Albert Chase McArthur Collection

Albert Chase McArthur (1881–1951) studied with Frank Lloyd Wright between 1907 and 1909, and designed the Arizona Biltmore Hotel using textile block-slab construction to conform to the surrounding desert environment. The collection consists of architectural drawings, textual records and photographs.

Eldean House, Paradise Valley, Arizona, 1963

Blaine Drake Collection

An early advocate of energy-efficient design, Blaine Drake (1911–1993) established his own architectural practice in Phoenix in 1945. He designed approximately 200 projects, including residences, office buildings, medical facilities and churches. This collection includes architectural drawings as well as textual records and photographs.

Section drawing of the Burton Barr Phoenix Central Library, 1992.

William P. Bruder Collection

William P. Bruder (1946– ) studied under prominent architects Gunnar Birkerts and Paolo Soleri before opening his own studio in New River, Arizona, in 1974. A prolific architect and designer, best known for the Burton Barr Phoenix Central Library, Bruder considered user needs and integrated natural materials into his work.

Other collections


Harold Housley

Harold Housley
Assistant Archivist

Phone: 480-965-6370

Access the collection

Viewing materials

To view materials in this collection, please make an appointment at least five business days prior to your visit by contacting Ask an Archivist or calling (480) 965-4932.

Appointments are available Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Special Collections Reading Room at the Design and the Arts Library on the Tempe campus.