Designer: Frank Lloyd Wright

Frank Lloyd Wright was a defining architect of the 20th century. We are proud to bring a myriad of his works — from furniture and lighting designs to drawings and architectural details to entire structures — to auction.
Free Evaluation

Every great architect is—necessarily—a great poet. He must be a great original interpreter of his time, his day, his age.

Frank Lloyd Wright

6 Things to Know About Frank Lloyd Wright

Wright designed 1,000 buildings over the course of his seven decade career, 532 of which were realized.

Beginning in 1887, Wright worked under Louis Sullivan in Chicago. Wright was fired in 1893 for working on his own private commissions.

Originally, Wright wanted to cover the concrete surfaces of his celebrated and visionary Fallingwater with gold leaf.

In 1957, Wright conceived a mile-high skyscraper that would have been four times taller than the tallest structure at the time, The Empire State Building. Though never realized, Wright's insistence that he could build it shows his limitless ambitions and imagination of possibility.

Wright has inspired by Japanese aesthetics and was a prominent collector and dealer of Ukiyo-e prints, both out of passion and necesstity, as he was often plagued with financial troubles.

While beloved by many and generous as a teacher, his temperamental nature and exacting standards put him at odds with other architects of the era. He once referred to the American Institute of Architects as "a harbor of refuge for the incompetent."

Kenneth Laurent House, Rockford, IL

Considered by Frank Lloyd Wright to be his "little gem," Wright sold this home and its original furnishings at auction in 2011 for $575,800, the second highest auction record for Frank Lloyd Wright. Kenneth and Phyllis Laurent commissioned this house in 1948 after Kenneth received a $10,000 housing grant given to disabled veterans. Phyllis saw Wright's Loren Pope house in Virginia in House Beautiful and the young couple wrote a letter to Wright, asking him to design a home that was wheelchair-accessible. Wright invited the Laurents to Taliesin to discuss the project and he readily accepted the commission, building the home for $20,000.  

The Laurent House is one of approximately sixty Usonian homes that Wright built beginning in 1934–single family, middle-class residences that emphasize the use of native and common materials, a unity with the surrounding landscape, open floor plans, flat roofs, cantilevered overhangs, radiant heating and a carport (a Wright invention). Usonia was also a designation Wright used, after others, to refer to a distinctly American architecture, free of previous historic references.

The Laurent House Foundation, Inc. purchased the home from Wright at auction. It was added to the National Register of Historic Places and underwent restoration from 2012 to 2015. This "little gem" is now open to the public for tours, allowing future generations to admire Frank Lloyd Wright's vision of an organic architecture that lived in harmony with its natural surroundings and the human spirit that inhabited its spaces.

Simplicity and repose are qualities that measure the value of any work of art.

Frank Lloyd Wright

Auction Results Frank Lloyd Wright

Frank Lloyd Wright Works in Context

Frank Lloyd Wright 1867–1959

During his seventy year career as an architect, Frank Lloyd Wright created more than 1,100 designs, half of which were realized and a large portion of which came about later in his life. Wright was born in Richland Center, Wisconsin in 1867. He enrolled at the University of Wisconsin in 1885 to study civil engineering, completing only two years of the program. After working for Joseph Silsbee on the construction of the Unity Chapel in Oak Park, Illinois Wright decided to pursue a career in architecture and he moved to Chicago where he began an apprenticeship at the famed architectural firm Adler and Sullivan, working directly with Louis Sullivan until 1893.

After parting ways, Wright moved to Oak Park. Working from his home studio, he developed a system of design developed from grid units and rooted in an appreciation of natural materials that would come to be known as the Prairie School of Architecture and would change the landscape of American design forever. Wright devoted himself to teaching and writing during the 1920s and 1930s. 1935 marked the beginning of an immense surge of creativity and productivity as he began work on his most celebrated residential design, Fallingwater. In the 1940s and 1950s Wright focused on his Usonian designs that reflected his belief in democratic architecture, offering middle-class residential options. In 1943, Wright took on his most demanding commission, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York. The museum, which would open its doors six months after his death in 1959, would be called his most significant work.

Art is a discovery and development of elementary principles of nature into beautiful forms suitable for human use.

Frank Lloyd Wright

To learn more about a work by Frank Lloyd Wright in your collection, contact our specialists.
Free Evaluation