Frank Lloyd Wright is perhaps the most famous American architect of all time, and 2017 marks the 150th anniversary of his birth on June 8, 1867. Here’s a look at how CAC is celebrating this occasion and how you can too!
by Jessica Cilella and Patrick Miner
Meet Mr. Wright
Frank Lloyd Wright grew up in Wisconsin and Massachusetts. He moved to Chicago in 1887, at the age of 20, in search of work. He soon got a job with the architecture firm Adler and Sullivan, and Louis Sullivan was Wright’s mentor for several years. After a dramatic split with Sullivan, he went on to form his own firm in 1893.
Wright pioneered the Prairie Style of architecture and today is one of very few architects considered to be a household name. In a career spanning seven decades, he designed hundreds of houses, museums and buildings of many other types. These include Fallingwater in Pennsylvania, the Guggenheim Museum in New York, Taliesin in Wisconsin, Robie House in Chicago and, of course, his own Home and Studio in Oak Park.
While Wright’s work can be found around the nation and in other countries, it’s most prevalent in the Chicago area. That’s good news for locals because CAC offers several tours of his work!
Frank Lloyd Wright by Bus
Wednesdays and Fridays at 9:30am, 4 hours
Discover the neighborhood where Wright's famed Prairie Style of architecture evolved. The tour includes bus transportation to and from Oak Park with commentary, a one-hour interior tour of Wright’s Home and Studio and a walking tour of the Frank Lloyd Wright Historic District.
Frank Lloyd Wright in Oak Park
Sundays at 11am, 12pm, 1pm, 2pm, 3pm and 4pm, 1 hour
Take in the exteriors of a rich selection of Wright-designed Prairie Style and Victorian homes in Oak Park on this hour-long walking tour.
Frank Lloyd Wright Neighborhoods
Saturday, June 17 at 9:30am, 4 hours
This special one-time bus tour follows Wright's career from 1899 to 1913, when his designs changed the face of the American family home. See more than 25 homes, including the Martin, Cheney and Roberts homes, which are not featured on any other CAC tour.
Second and fourth Thursday of every month, 1 hour
This Chicago landmark was designed by Burnham and Root, but its bright, dramatic lobby was redesigned by Wright during a renovation in 1907.
Architectural Highlights by Bus
Thursdays and Saturdays at 9:30am, 3.5 hours
This bus tour is CAC’s most comprehensive—covering 30 miles of Chicago. Stops include several neighborhoods and the Robie House, where you’ll take an interior tour provided by the Frank Lloyd Wright Trust.
Beverly (South): A Castle, Mansions and More
Sundays, July 23, Sept. 10 & Oct. 8 at 1:15pm, 2 hours
Tour Beverly, one of Chicago’s most fascinating neighborhoods. Explore two houses built just after the Great Fire of 1871, a true Chicago castle and a Frank Lloyd Wright house.
CAC is offering two trips this year in celebration of the 150th anniversary of Wright’s birth.
Member trip to Taliesin
June 8 and 9
This trip—which takes place on Wright’s actual birthday—takes you to some of his masterpieces in Madison and Spring Green, Wisconsin. Wright's Wisconsin roots helped define him as an architect and heavily influenced his work. We'll get an up-close look at those influences during this two-day trip where we'll see the Monona Terrace, his world-famous Taliesin estate and other sites.
Donor trip to Japan
September 27 to October 6
Join CAC on a very special trip to Japan focusing on modern architecture, including two nights as guests to the invitation-only Frank Lloyd Wright 150th Birth Year Celebration and Symposium. In addition to Tokyo, we will be touring Nikko, Nagoya, Kyoto and Osaka.
We hope to see you out and about this summer and fall exploring the works of Frank Lloyd Wright with us!