|Frank Lloyd Wright|
* 8th of June 1867 in Richland Center, Wisconsin
† 9th of April 1959 in Phoenix, Arizona
The American architect and designer, Frank Lloyd Wright, is born in 1867 in Richland Centre, Wisconsin.
From 1885 until 1887, he studies mechanical engineering at the University of Wisconsin; but, drops out after only four semesters to work in the Chicago architectural practice of Joseph Lyman Silsbee. Frank Lloyd Wright soon transfers to the architectural practice of Dankmar Adler and Louis Sullivan who are amongst the most renowned and progressive architects of their days.
Frank Lloyd Wright is responsible for commissions for private houses until 1893 when he founds an office of his own in Chicago.
By 1909, he builds about fifty private houses mainly in the Chicago area following the so-called "Prairie Style". The first ones are built with natural materials such as fieldstone, brick and wood, fitting harmoniously in the natural surroundings and at the same time offering comfort, space and ambience.
The long and low-slung "Robie House" from 1906 is regarded as the most mature example of the "Prairie House"; it is built of brick, concrete steel and glass. Frank Lloyd Wright also designs the interiors of his houses. Even when designing office buildings and public buildings, Frank Lloyd Wright always strives to create as inviting an atmosphere as possible within the new interiors: "the space within that building is the reality of that building."
Between 1903 and 1905, Frank Lloyd Wright designs the Larkin Building in Buffalo with open galleries and a lofty interior flooded with light; an early open-plan office in which employees work within sight of each other. In 1904, Frank Lloyd Wright also designs a metal swivel office chair for the Larkin Building.
In 1905, Frank Lloyd Wright builds the "Unity Temple" in Oak Park, a Chicago suburb.
From 1909 until 1911, Frank Lloyd Wright travels through Germany, Austria, Italy, and France. During that extensive trip, Frank Lloyd Wright also consults with the publisher Ernst Wasmuth in Berlin about a book on Wright's work.
In 1911, Frank Lloyd Wright builds his own house "Taliesin" in Spring Green, Wisconsin.
Between 1916 and 1922, Frank Lloyd Wright spends most of his time in Japan where he supervises the building of the "Imperial Hotel" in Tokyo.
He builds "Holyhook House" in Los Angeles in 1917.
In 1922, Frank Lloyd Wright opens an office in Los Angeles; but, by the late 1920’s he is forced to return to Spring Green due to the worldwide economic crisis. There he founds the "Taliesin Fellowship", a guild based on the aesthetics of John Ruskin, an English writer, painter and social philosopher whose idea of an aesthetic economy in which the human being is the center should stay with its craftsmanship and the resulting value on it. Frank Lloyd Wright works until 1934 on a utopian housing project, "Broadacre City" alongside his students.
Edgar J. Kaufmann is a student of Frank Lloyd Wright who commissions his teacher to build a house for him in 1935, the "Falling Water" at Mill Run, Pennsylvania. The long building tracts and terraces of "Falling Water" are cantilevered over a waterfall. Frank Lloyd Wright designs the interior and installs floor heating.
Between 1936 and 1939, Frank Lloyd Wright designs the Johnson Wax Factory building for S.C. Johnson & Son in Racine, Wisconsin.
In the 1940’s, Frank Lloyd Wright is commissioned by Solomon R. Guggenheim and Hilla Rebay to build the world-famous Guggenheim Museum in New York. The ingenious and spectacular spiral form of the interior provokes countless disputes with the executors of Solomon Guggenheim's estate after his death in 1949. The Guggenheim Museum was not completed until 1959, six months after Frank Lloyd Wright himself dies at the age of ninety-two.
Frank Lloyd Wright bequeaths a rich legacy of over 1000 planned projects of which more than 500 are realized. Always using cutting-edge materials and techniques, Frank Lloyd Wright wants forms to match the landscape fitting into the whole scheme of things: "The good building makes the landscape more beautiful than it was before the building was built."
Among his most famous designed furniture are the Allen Table, the Taliesin Table, the Coonley Chair, the Robie Chair, the Barrel Chair.