How much do you know about Frank Lloyd Wright?



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Frank Lloyd Wright: Pioneer of Organic Architecture

  • Frank Lloyd Wright was an American architect, designer, writer, and educator who designed more than 1,000 structures over a creative period of 70 years.

  • Wright played a key role in the architectural movements of the twentieth century, influencing architects worldwide through his works and hundreds of apprentices in his Taliesin Fellowship.

  • Wright believed in designing in harmony with humanity and the environment, a philosophy he called organic architecture.

  • This philosophy was exemplified in Fallingwater (1935), which has been called "the best all-time work of American architecture".

  • Wright was the pioneer of what came to be called the Prairie School movement of architecture and also developed the concept of the Usonian home in Broadacre City, his vision for urban planning in the United States.

  • He also designed original and innovative offices, churches, schools, skyscrapers, hotels, museums, and other commercial projects.

  • Wright-designed interior elements (including leaded glass windows, floors, furniture, and even tableware) were integrated into these structures.

  • Wright wrote several books and numerous articles and was a popular lecturer in the United States and in Europe.

  • Wright was recognized in 1991 by the American Institute of Architects as "the greatest American architect of all time".

  • In 2019, a selection of his work became a listed World Heritage Site as The 20th-Century Architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright.

  • Wright was born in Richland Center, Wisconsin, in 1867 and studied civil engineering at the University of Wisconsin before apprenticing in Chicago with Louis Sullivan at Adler & Sullivan.

  • Wright's personal life was sometimes tumultuous and made headlines, including leaving his first wife Catherine Tobin for Mamah Cheney in 1909 and the murder of Mamah and her children and others at his Taliesin estate by a staff member in 1914.

  • Wright died in 1959, leaving behind a legacy as a pioneer of organic architecture and a lasting impact on the world of architecture.Frank Lloyd Wright: Life and Career

  • Frank Lloyd Wright was offered a position in Daniel Burnham's firm after studying at the École des Beaux-Arts and spending two years in Rome, but he declined it to pursue his vision of modern American architecture.

  • Wright moved his practice to his home in 1898, where he designed and constructed an expansive studio addition to the north of the main house, which would become the laboratory for his next 10 years of architectural creations.

  • Wright completed about 50 projects, including many houses in Oak Park, by 1901, and his new ideas for the American house received widespread awareness through two publications in the Ladies' Home Journal.

  • Wright's residential designs of this era were known as "prairie houses," which complemented the land around Chicago, had an open floor plan, low-pitched roofs with broad, overhanging eaves, strong horizontal lines, and a wide use of natural materials.

  • Wright had begun to reject the upper-middle-class Prairie Style single-family house model by 1909, shifting his focus to a more democratic architecture.

  • Wright went to Europe in 1909 with a portfolio of his work and presented it to Berlin publisher Ernst Wasmuth, resulting in the publication of the Wasmuth Portfolio in 1911, which contained more than 100 lithographs of Wright's designs and became his first major exposure of work in Europe.

  • Wright designed notable public buildings and projects in this era, such as the Larkin Administration Building (1905), the Geneva Inn (Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, 1911), the Midway Gardens (Chicago, Illinois, 1913), and the Banff National Park Pavilion (Alberta, Canada, 1914).

  • While working in Japan, Wright left an impressive architectural heritage, including the Imperial Hotel, completed in 1923, and Jiyu Gakuen, a girls' school founded in 1921, which was built under Wright's direction and is covered with Ōya stones.

  • Wright designed a "textile" concrete block system in the early 1920s, which he first used on the Millard House in Pasadena, California, in 1923, and later used on the Ennis House and the Samuel Freeman House (both 1923), and the Arizona Biltmore Hotel in 1927.

  • Wright's personal life was marked by family turmoil, including his relationship with Mamah Borthwick Cheney, his mistress, and their deaths in a fire set by a servant at Taliesin in 1914, and his divorces from Kitty Wright and Maude "Miriam" Noel before marrying Olga (Olgivanna) Lazovich Hinzenburg in 1928.

  • Wright and his wife Olgivanna put out a call for students to come to Taliesin to study and work under Wright while they learned architecture and spiritual development, which evolved into The School of Architecture at Taliesin, an accredited school until it closed under acrimonious circumstances in 2020.

  • Wright conceived a new type of dwelling concurrent with the development of Broadacre City, also referred to as Usonia, which came to be known as the Usonian House, with the Herbert and Katherine Jacobs First House (1937) in Madison, Wisconsin, as the most complete example of the form.Frank Lloyd Wright: A Summary

  • Frank Lloyd Wright was an American architect who designed over 1,000 structures in his lifetime.

  • Wright's Prairie Houses were characterized by their open floor plans and use of natural materials.

  • His Usonian houses were designed in response to the changing nature of domestic life, with more open plans and a focus on the kitchen as a workspace.

  • Wright's designs were known for their use of glass and custom-made electric light fittings.

  • Fallingwater, a private residence built over a 30-foot waterfall, is one of Wright's most famous works.

  • Wright's winter home and studio complex in Scottsdale, Arizona, is now the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation.

  • The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York City is probably Wright's most recognized masterpiece.

  • The Price Tower, a 19-story tower in Bartlesville, Oklahoma, is the only realized skyscraper designed by Wright.

  • Florida Southern College in Lakeland, Florida, has the world's largest collection of Frank Lloyd Wright architecture.

  • Wright was influenced by Japanese art and architecture, which can be seen in his designs and personal art collection.

  • Wright was also an active dealer in Japanese art, primarily ukiyo-e.

  • Wright was known for his unique fashion sense and love of automobiles, owning over 50 cars in his lifetime.Frank Lloyd Wright: American Architect and Art Dealer

  • Frank Lloyd Wright was a prominent American architect, who designed over 400 built structures, of which about 300 survived as of 2005.

  • Wright was also a successful art dealer, who sold a vast number of Japanese prints to private collectors and museums such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art, amassing a collection worth over $500,000 between 1905 and 1923.

  • In 1920, Wright's reputation as an art dealer was tarnished when many of the prints he sold were discovered to have been retouched, likely as retribution from some of his Japanese dealers who were unhappy with his under-the-table sales.

  • Wright was forced to sell off much of his art collection to pay off outstanding debts, and the incident marked the end of the high point of his career as an art dealer.

  • Wright was interested in site and community planning throughout his career and had 41 commissions on the scale of community planning or urban design.

  • His thoughts on suburban design began in 1900 with a proposed subdivision layout for Charles E. Roberts, which strayed from traditional suburban lot layouts and set houses on small square blocks of four equal-sized lots surrounded on all sides by roads instead of straight rows of houses on parallel streets.

  • Wright's more ambitious designs of entire communities were exemplified by his entry into the City Club of Chicago Land Development Competition in 1913, which included several social levels and all the amenities of a small city.

  • Wright was married three times, fathering four sons and three daughters, and adopted Svetlana Milanoff, the daughter of his third wife, Olgivanna Lloyd Wright.

  • After his death, most of Wright's archives were stored at the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation in Taliesin and Taliesin West, and in 2012, the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation partnered with the Museum of Modern Art and the Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library to move the archive's content to New York.

  • Wright designed over 400 built structures, of which about 300 survived as of 2005, and several of his projects were either built after his death or remain unbuilt.

  • Wright received significant honorary recognition for his lifetime achievements, including a Gold Medal award from The Royal Institute of British Architects in 1941 and the AIA Gold Medal in 1949.

  • Eight of Wright's buildings were inscribed on the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites under the title The 20th-century Architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright in July 2019.


Test your knowledge on the life and work of Frank Lloyd Wright, one of the greatest American architects of all time. Explore his philosophy of organic architecture, his impact on the Prairie School movement, and his innovative designs for residential and commercial structures. Discover fascinating facts about his personal life, including his tumultuous relationships and love for automobiles. Take this quiz to learn more about the life and career of Frank Lloyd Wright, a true pioneer of modern architecture.

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