We were in Chicago for less than 48 hours but we were able to knock off one item that is on my bucket list: visiting the swanky suburb of Oak Park to see some of the homes designed by American Prairie style architect, Frank Lloyd Wright. Wright designed over 1000 structures of which 532 were built. They included offices, churches, schools, skyscrapers, hotels and museums. He often designed interior elements for these buildings as well, including furniture and stained glass.
In this four of five block radius you will find examples of his prolific residential work. It is on these streets that you can tour the Frank Lloyd Wright Home and Studio. You must make reservations to see the Home and Studio for the one hour guided tour (unfortunately, we did not have time to do this but we did visit the gift shop). I would probably have to recommend the three hour combination tour if you have time. It includes a tour of the studio and then a guided walking tour of the properties in the very near vicinity.
In the gift shop you will find plenty of architecture books, replica art and jewellery pieces that you can purchase but the best deal is to purchase a map of the neighbourhood. The map provides a self-guided walking tour and short write-ups and pictures of the the house that Frank Lloyd Write designed in Oak Park. As we were pressed for time we drove around the neighbourhood and took a few pictures of some of the majestic homes. This is definitely a must do tour if you are a fan of iconic American architecture and the Prairie style. I was always aware of who FLW was but was intrigued by his life and work once I read a book for my book club called Loving Frank by Nancy Horan. It is a fictional novel about the very real love affair between Frank Lloyd Wright and his client Martha “Mamah” Borthwick. In 1909 they each separated from their spouses, travelled to Europe and then, in 1911, settled into the spectacular Taliesin in Wisconsin. Throughout the book you read about the different houses that he is designing for other families. There are some of them.
This is a short photo essay on the houses by Frank Lloyd Wright in Oak Park Illinois
Front Facade of the Frank Lloyd Wright Studio
Arthur B. Heurtley House
Peter A. Beachy House
If you visit: Frank Lloyd Wright Home and Studio (from their website)
(image credit: Frank Lloyd Wright website)
951 Chicago Ave., Oak Park, IL 60302
Tour Hours: 10 am – 4 pm daily
Museum Shop Hours: 9 am – 5 pm daily
Closed: Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas and New Year’s Day.
Frank Lloyd Wright Trust Member Reservations: Visit our museum shops or call the ticket sales line at 312.994.4000 ext. 9. The ticket sales line is available 7 days a week 9 am – 5 pm CT.
Tour Length: 60 minutes
Admission: $18 adults, $15 students, seniors (65+), and military. Free tickets for children 3 and under.
(note: prices maybe subject to change, please call for more information)