With a six-story spiraling ramp, Frank Lloyd Wright’s Guggenheim Museum is a hallmark example of hemicycle design. At the center, an open rotunda offers views of artwork on several levels. Wright, who was known for his self-assurance, said that his goal was to “make the building and the painting an uninterrupted, beautiful symphony such as never existed in the World of Art before.”
The circular building seems as revolutionary today as it did when the museum first opened on October 21, 1959.
Explore Wright’s New York Guggenheim Museum
Frank Lloyd Wright Exhibition at the Guggenheim >>
Frank Lloyd Wright, the iconic American architect, was born June 8, 1867 — making him exactly a year older than Charles Rennie Mackintosh. Why is Wright so famous?
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Photo: William H Danforth Chapel by Frank Lloyd Wright, Lakeland, FL. © Jackie Craven
Some people say the rooms are cramped and the built-in furnishings as hard as the stone walls. And doesn’t the sound of all that water make you wanna peeeee? But Frank Lloyd Wright wasn’t thinking of comfort when he designed the famous Fallingwater house in Mill Run, Pennsylvania.
Walking through Fallingwater is like climbing a narrow mountain trail with waterfalls loudly cascading all around. Awe and reverence mingle with the uneasy sense that life is precarious. And, indeed, the masterpiece by Frank Lloyd Wright hovers on uncertain ground. Shoring up the support beams and preserving the house has been a multi-million dollar project.
If you go, be sure to reserve your tickets weeks in advance. Wear sturdy shoes and plan on spending a couple hours exploring the grounds. You can take photos of the exterior for your personal use, but you’ll be asked to put the cameras away when you go inside the house.
Have you visited Fallingwater? Tell your story in the comments box at the bottom of this page.
A whirlwind tour of Frank Lloyd Wright’s Chicago is likely to take you to the majestic Rookery Building on LaSalle Street, in the center of the financial district. With steel frame engineering, elaborate ironwork, and a grand oriel staircase, the building conveys elegance and solidity. But, how much of the design belongs to Wright?
The Lobby details added in 1905 are Wright’s, but the building itself grew from the genius of two earlier masters, John Wellborn Root and Daniel H. Burnham.
Begin your journey: Inside the 1888 Rookery Building >
Photo copyright Steve Estes / all rights reserved