American architect Frank Lloyd Wright would have turned 150 on 8 June 2017. A series of exhibitions and open houses are taking place to mark the occasion, and we’ve chosen a selection of the best.
Born in 1867 in Wisconsin, Frank Lloyd Wright is considered to be one of the 20th century’s most important architects, and his work is credited a precursor to the modernism.
Wright, who established his own practice in Chicago in 1893, led the Prairie School – a movement that spanned the end of the 19th century and the start of the 20th century.
Developed in the American Midwest, the style is typified by low, horizontal roof lines and overhanging eaves, designed to reference to the area’s flat landscape.
Examples of Wright’s work from the era include the 1909 Robie House and Emile Bach House in Chicago, while the 1927 Fallingwater house in Pennsylvania, the 1937 Taliesin West house in Arizona and the 1959 Guggenheim Museum in New York are among his famous later projects.
Events are across the USA will celebrate this legacy on the 150th anniversary of his birth, including a series of open houses, lectures and talks organised by the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation, a major retrospective exhibition at MoMA, and a balloon installation. Here are 10 worth marking in the diary:
David Wright House Open House
Thursday 8 June 2017, 6am-6pm
4505 N Rubicon Ave, Phoenix, AZ 85018
A day-long celebration at the house Wright designed for his son David and daughter-in-law Gladys will feature an installation of balloons by LA-based art studio Geronimo Balloons intended to match the carpet located in the living room.
Frank Lloyd Wright 150th Birthday Celebration
Thursday 8 June 2017, 10am-5:45pm
Solomon R Guggenheim Museum, 1071 5th Ave, New York, NY 10128
The architect’s Guggenheim Museum in New York will slash its admission price from $25 to $1.50. A guided tour and talk in the influential building will be topped off with free birthday cupcakes.
Robie House Open House
Thursday 8 June 2017, 6-8pm
5757 South Woodlawn Avenue, Chicago
The Frank Lloyd Wright Trust is offering free access to the Robie House – one of Wright’s most influential Prairie designs, for which he also designed all the interiors, furniture and lighting. The two-hour-long evening event will include family activities and light refreshments.
Event is free but registration is required
Emile Bach House Open House
Thursday 8 June, 4-7pm
7415 N Sheridan Road, Chicago
For three hours, visitors will be about to freely peruse the Emile Bach House in Chicago’s Rogers Park neighbourhood, designed by Wright on the verge of his Japanese influenced era. Family activities, drinks and snacks are provided.
Event is free but registration is required
Frank Lloyd Wright at 150: Unpacking the Archive
Monday 12 June – Sunday 1 October 2017
Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), 11 West 53rd Street, New York
The hotly anticipated major exhibition by MoMA will feature approximately 450 works created over the architects 60-year career, including drawings, models, building fragments and films. It opens just after his birthday and runs until October.
Wright for Wright: The Experimental Architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright’s Homes
Until December 2017
Speyer May Gallery, Bear Run Nature Reserve, 1491 Mill Run Rd, Mill Run, Pennsylvania
Taking place at Fallingwater – one of the world’s best-known private houses – the Wright for Wright exhibition focus on the architects self-designed residences, including the home and studio in Oak Park, and the Taliesin West and East summer and winter homes.
Taliesin West Tours
Insights Tour starts 9am. Night Lights Tours at 6:30pm and 7pm
12621 North Frank Lloyd Wright Blvd, Scottsdale, Arizona
The Taliesin West, the architect’s winter home in the Arizona desert, will host day tours exploring his drafting studio, garden room and music pavilion, and night tours where the residence’s fire-breathing-dragon fountain will be put into action. Costs $1.50 with a birthday cupcakes included.
A Doghouse by Frank Lloyd Wright! Special Exhibit
Thursday 8 June 2017
3501 Civic Center Drive, San Rafael, California
Wright’s solo doghouse project Eddie’s House will go on display at the Marin County Civic Center Library. The architect was asked to design the residence for the pet labrador by the son of a client, who wrote him a letter and offered to pay him with money from his paper route.
Unity Temple Open House
Saturday 17 June, 2-5pm
875 Lake Street, Oak Park, Illinois
The $23 million restoration of Unity Temple will complete just in time to open for Wright’s birthday. Located in the Chicago suburb of Oak Park, it is the only public building left from his Prairie era.
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