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Jean Michel  and Franklin in front of JM's adobe

Frank's sculptured house with Tico and the other dogs

Franklin , Jean Michel and Clipper an JM 's house

Franklin , Jean Michel and Clipper and JM 's house

Franklin Mac Fie and Jean Michel Belluc bought land in Medenales New Mexico . Jean Michel built a somewhat traditional Northern New Mexican style adobe but included a Morroccan style fire place and an inner courtyard not usual in this part of the world. Meanwhile Franklin made a very creative and unusual ferro cement house that changed with various developments. He started out with the idea of geodesic dome, however he didn’t reinforce the frame enough and ended up with sculpted free form that blended into the hill organically allowing Franklin to create an incredibly beautiful interior as well. It had a “Star Trek” like window over looking the field to the Chama River.Sometimes it got referred to as Franklin’s Hobbit House. It included a wall of found glass and gloriously merged organically with the hard adobe earth of New Mexico.

Here is typical type phenomenon that happened while they were living there. The Major Domo of the Chama Accequia ( the Head Boss of the Chama ditch) Reynel Maestes sold them the land and noticed certain leadership qualities of Jean Michel (IBM executive -French aristocrat attributes, he was used to $ and power,etc) Reynel goes to the ditch meeting with his loaded pistol. He shoots the ceiling and shouts that the Frenchman ( the gay Frenchman) will be the new Major Domo! He will get us more water from the big guys in Santa Fe and the Feds -and he did! Later on, when some young fool makes the mistake of stealing from Jean Michel and Franklin – Jean Michel shuts the water off ( their life blood !) until what ever it was got returned..Right away! and it was.

Below: Franklin incongruently on a horse in front of a part of rental house on adjacent property that they lived in while building. A typical New Mexico situation: they had 4 rooms and the largest one had barbwire running through it along the line of Vigas (rough hewned logs supporting the ceiling) to mark where one brother of the family owned part of the house!

Franklin on horse at the rental house

Franklin on horse at the rental house

MacFie's Western Photo

MacFie's Western Photo

these photo’s are part of a huge set of Polaroid photos done at this time

Out West

Franklin in his surroundings

Franklin in his surroundings

Franklin's house

Franklin's house

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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3 Comments

    • el hassane ahchouch
    • Posted September 17, 2014 at 4:46 pm
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    Hello everybody.I was very astonished and very happy to see franclin and Jean Michel on this photo.Ican even tell you that my eyes are swollen with tears.This is my story:
    I was born in a little fishing village in the south of Morocco,this village is called AGLOU .For about ten years both men used to come and live in our village(mainly Franclin) ,he used to read about diffrent topics specially about spirituality;I myself still have books of Krishnamurti .When they left ,they left behind dozens of books in our sheepfold where they used to stay whenever they came to Morocco.I came from a family of ten , and whenever there was a new born in our family,Franclin used to make fun of us saying :”an other mouth to feed”
    I wish I could chat with them now to tell them all that.Thanks to them ,I fell head over hills in love with the English language and so do my own children who are doing their masters in the states and in spain.

    • Thanks so much for this Comment – it is wonderful to hear from you…. younger brother of Ali — i think? All of us who knew Franklin and Jean Michel remember Ali and Family as friends! Thank you – speaking for all of the rest of us on this website -friends of Franklin Macfie..( Also on your email you noticed that the picture from Franklin’s box of photos is not Ali – after all – I remember Franklin had pictures of him your family, but we haven’t found them yet- still may find them up at Abby’s place – -upstate New York- we’ll keep looking.) Please let us stay in touch! Barbara Stevens

    • Hassan Ahchouch
    • Posted September 23, 2014 at 12:01 pm
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    • Reply

    My family and I are very sad when we learnd about Franklin’s death.In fact,we haven’t heard from Frank since 1983.Everybody knew him in the village,he was very kind to other people, he was called by our family name: franklin ahchouch.He learned berber to communicate locally. we are still looking for photos taken by Franklin during his stay in Morocco,and I promise to share them with you.If you give me your phone number,I’ll call you or skype to know more about each other.Thank you again for all hat you did.Hassan Ahchouch(france)


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