Frank Lloyd Wright's 150th Birthday...

On the anniversary of Mr. Wright's birth, I thought I'd share a special trip we took to Chicago. In 2006, our younger son was already very interested in architecture. Steve and I had been to Chicago and wanted to share our love of the Windy City with him. Oak Park, where Mr. Wright's career began, was a MUST.

Frank Lloyd Wright was many things: an architect, interior designer, writer, educator, and character, who designed more than 1,000 structures, 532 of which were completed. Wright believed in designing structures that were in harmony with humanity and its environment, a philosophy he called organic architecture. He was a leader of the Prairie School movement of architecture and developed the concept of the Usonian home, his unique vision for urban planning in the United States. His creative period spanned more than 70 years.
We began our lesson at the Frank Lloyd Wright Home and Studio (1889/1898) which served as Wright's private residence and workplace from 1889 to 1909—the first 20 years of his career. Wright used his home as an architectural laboratory, experimenting with design concepts that contain the seeds of his architectural philosophy.
Since Oak Park is home to the world’s largest collection of Wright-designed buildings, a walking tour is just part of the Frank Lloyd Wright history lesson. After touring his studio, we went out for lunch and then returned to don headphones. We explored the Historic District surrounding the Home and Studio at our own pace on a self-guided audio tour. The tour featured the exteriors of a rich selection of architecturally significant buildings supplemented by archival photographs. So dang cool.

Our last Wright lesson was found on the campus of the University of Chicago at the very famous Frederick C. Robie House. Built between 1909 and 1910, the building is renowned as the greatest example of the Prairie School style, the first architectural style considered uniquely American. It was our favorite of them all.
Since I'm sharing memories from a trip 11 years ago, here's more from my written recap of this trip, "Friday, we began the day on the River touring and learning.  The buildings in Chicago are like no where else. Absolutely astonishing.   It was very informative and we were all ooohing and ahhing.  We then went to a quirky place The Museum of Surgery and learned a lot while being grossed out.  We explored the shores of Lake Michigan and just really had a great deal of fun."
When in Chicago, you have to go to a Cubs' game. We love this stadium, the enthusiasm of the fans (even before last year's super win) and their hot dogs.
A required photo was taken at Cloud Gate, also known as The Bean, for pretty obvious reasons.
I have always said that photos evoke memories. Having gone through all these snapshots of Chicago, I am eager to book a trip and get back there. I have loved this journey down memory lane. It's interesting that it took Frank Lloyd Wright's 150th birthday celebration to get me on that path.
We create our buildings and then they create us.
Likewise, we construct our circle of friends
and our communities and then they construct us.
-Frank Lloyd Wright

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Denise said...

And memories from when Jim and I went there and much of what we toured was at your recommendation. You are a great travel agent.

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