Monday, September 24, 2018

Frank Faulkner's Legacy in Hudson

Frank Faulkner, acclaimed artist, interior designer, and Southern gentleman, died a week ago last night. In addition to his art, Faulkner is well know for his proclivity for rescuing and restoring old houses, here in Hudson and elsewhere--houses which when he bought them were usually described, justifiably so, as "wrecks." An article that appeared in Rural Intelligence in 2008 reported that he bought his first house in Hudson in 1982, and he was, at that time, on his fourteenth house. In an article that appeared in One Kings Lane, about his house in Spencertown, Faulkner is quoted as saying, "It's never been about flipping them or reselling them. I always intended to grow old in them. But after everything is finished and I've lived in it for a while, I see another house I want to play with."

Gossips came to Hudson in 1993, eleven years after Faulkner bought his first house here, so I missed his first eleven years of bringing houses back from the edge. The first house I remember being his was this one on South Fifth Street. I recall harrowing accounts of the condition of the house--two houses actually--when he bought it.

During the time Faulkner owned the house (he sold it in 1996) and for many years after, it was painted all taupe.

In 2010, the house was featured in House Beautiful. Today, the house, known as Haviland House, is a short-term rental.

Faulkner's next house was this one on South Seventh Street.

Then there was this house on lower Warren Street, which Faulkner acquired in 2002 and sold in 2004.

The article in Rural Intelligence, mentioned above, identified Faulkner's house on North Fifth Street as being his fourteenth house in Hudson. The picture of below is borrowed from that RI article.

Today, any view of the house from the street is almost completely obscured by a fence erected by a subsequent owner.

During the time Faulkner owned the house on North Fifth Street, a carriage house which he originally purchased thinking he might use it as a painting studio, he acquired and restored this Arts and Crafts house on Washington Street.

When Faulkner owned the house, he painted it all a very dark green with just a few dark terra cotta accents.

Faulkner's last house in Hudson, according to my recollection at least, was this one on South Fourth Street, which he acquired in 2008 and sold in 2013. The exterior of the house is today exactly as he intended it, except two of the three meticulously pruned boxwoods in front have since died.

Such a remarkable legacy. Such a great loss. Thank you, Frank Faulkner, for your enduring contribution to Hudson.


  1. I’m sorry to hear about Frank Faulkner. Along the way we were good friends. May he rest in piece.

    In 1984 he had the Greek Revival house on Allen Street that was amazingly beautiful, near Willard Place. He also had a stint in Catskill with the church and accompanying rectory (I think it was the rectory). Also beautiful, and like just about every house of his, it was published.

    He was a very good painter and a truly gifted designer/decorator.

    I almost forgot — he had a farmhouse in Ghent and another very pretty house in the woods in Claverack (I think — I remember the house, not the location).

    I’m surprised he had only 14 houses in Hudson.

    Jock Spivy

  2. I have come into owning a 1984 painting of Faulkner-stunning texture and colors on canvas