Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Vale Rex Ball

Boston Avenue United Methodist Church, Tulsa

I hate it when bad news barges its way into my inbox.

Tonight it was news that Tulsa architect and preservationist, Rex Ball, had died.

I first met Rex at the Sixth World Congress on Art Deco in 2001 when, as President of the Tulsa Preservation Commission, he welcomed us to Tulsa and introduced to its many Art Deco highlights. He designed the wonderful 'modern deco' MTTP Bus Depot in downtown Tulsa in the late 1990s.

A memorial service is planned for Friday at 11am. Fittingly it will be at one of the most spectacular Art Deco buildings that he showed us during our time in Tulsa. The Boston Avenue United Methodist Church (pictured above) from 1929 by Adah Robinson and Bruce Goff although as we found out at the time thee is some controversy over that. You might want to check out the church's official website ( but please wait a few days, it isn't very pleasant at the moment.

I can't say I knew Rex well. I talked with him once or twice and I know some of the things he did in Tulsa. He was a good man and Tulsa is a better place because of him.

~ Vale Rex Ball ~


  1. Like David, I met Rex Ball at the Sixth World Congress in Tulsa, and was impressed by his knowledge of his city's Deco heritage and his dedication to the preservation cause. He will be missed.

  2. Sorry to hear of your friend's passing.
    What a beautiful church to hold his memorial in.