Modern architect build a solid reputation

Avriel Shull faced only a couple of obstacles in her day in the world of design.

She was a woman when the field featured very few. And she had no architecture degree. Or any other degree, for that matter.

But the Carmel native rose to prominence and became known for Indiana’s regional modernism. Shull, who died in 1976, will be the focus of a free presentation at 6:30 p.m. Thursday at the Red Room of the Bartholomew County Public Library. Connie Zeigler, who has researched and written articles on the life of Shull, will present the program, “Avriel Shull: How a Real Dame Made Modernism Sexy in Indiana.”

A majority of her projects were single-family homes. She also designed custom homes in Indiana and in other states.

Shull’s first major project beyond Indiana was a public library in Elkins, West Virginia.

She became so well known that Life magazine covered her wedding.

Zeigler is the owner and principal of C. Resources and has served as a preservation consultant for communities, individuals and a state preservation commission. She has researched and written museum exhibits; law journal, history and popular magazine articles; writes a monthly newspaper column; and has penned numerous federal and state historical reports.

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Brian Blair is a reporter for The Republic. He can be reached at or 812-379-5672.