Louis Sullivan 1856–1924

Louis H. Sullivan, born in 1856, became known as the “Father of Skyscrapers” for his contributions to the modern Chicago skyline. He began his architectural training at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and apprenticed as a draftsman for the Boston architect Frank Furness, but was soon drawn to Chicago’s building boom and moved to the city with his family in 1873.

After returning from study at the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris, Sullivan was hired by Chicago-based architect Dankmar Adler as a draftsman in 1879. Deeply impressed with the creative designs of Sullivan, Adler made him a full-time partner in 1881. It was this partnership that created some of the most pioneering and prolific buildings in Chicago including the Wainwright Building, the Schiller Building, the Auditorium Building, and the James Charnley House. However, it was the Chicago Stock Exchange, built at the height of the Chicago World’s Fair in 1893, which was undoubtedly the magnum opus of the pair. The interior of the building was decorated with lavish organic designs inspired by the flora of the prairie landscape—later influencing apprentice and protégé Frank Lloyd Wright.

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Auction Results Louis Sullivan

LOUIS SULLIVAN, rare Radiator Screen from Cyrus Hall McCormick House, Chicago | wright20.com

Louis Sullivan

rare Radiator Screen from Cyrus Hall McCormick House, Chicago

estimate: $20,000–30,000
result: $40,640
LOUIS SULLIVAN, window from the Auditorium Theater, Chicago | wright20.com

Louis Sullivan

window from the Auditorium Theater, Chicago

estimate: $20,000–30,000
result: $30,000
LOUIS SULLIVAN, medallion for the Carson, Pirie, Scott Building, Chicago | wright20.com

Louis Sullivan

medallion for the Carson, Pirie, Scott Building, Chicago

estimate: $5,000–7,000
result: $14,950
LOUIS SULLIVAN, exterior lunette from the Scoville Building, Chicago | wright20.com

Louis Sullivan

exterior lunette from the Scoville Building, Chicago

estimate: $10,000–15,000
result: $11,250
LOUIS SULLIVAN, Baluster from the Schlesinger and Mayer Department Store, Chicago | wright20.com

Louis Sullivan

Baluster from the Schlesinger and Mayer Department Store, Chicago

estimate: $5,000–7,000
result: $5,100
LOUIS SULLIVAN, window from the Henry B. Babson House, Riverside | wright20.com

Louis Sullivan

window from the Henry B. Babson House, Riverside

estimate: $5,000–7,000
result: $5,000
LOUIS SULLIVAN, exterior lunette from the Scoville Building, Chicago | wright20.com

Louis Sullivan

exterior lunette from the Scoville Building, Chicago

estimate: $5,000–7,000
result: $5,000
LOUIS SULLIVAN, set of four of windows from the Henry B. Babson House, Riverside | wright20.com

Louis Sullivan

set of four of windows from the Henry B. Babson House, Riverside

estimate: $3,000–5,000
result: $4,375