Circle of Influence

Frank Lloyd Wright & Chicago Architects

This collection of works by Frank Lloyd Wright and Chicago School architects is unprecedented in the market and is focused on a broad spectrum of chair designs by Wright. Panel-back chairs from the 1908 Avery Coonley Playhouse are offered alongside a seminal chair from the Trier house of 1956, showing variations on a theme of vertical backrest design employed by Wright throughout his career. Sculptural innovation through the use of plywood in the Usonian period is presented in numerous examples ranging from tables and chairs to lighting. Radical departures in the use of metal in design are found in Wright’s use of copper and cast aluminum seating from Price Tower, and earlier precedents of cast iron by Adler and Sullivan contrast with reductivist metalwork by Purcell and Elmslie. This seminal collection of works by Chicago School architects invites study and comparison among a broad range of work from this important period.

Dankmar Adler and Louis Sullivan

During their partnership, Dankmar Adler and Louis H. Sullivan created some of the ground breaking and influential buildings of the late nineteenth and early twentieth century. Adler specialized in the engineering side of the business, which allowed Sullivan to work primarily as the designer on their projects. Together they completed many notable structures including the famous Wainwright Building (St. Louis, 1891), the Schiller Building (Chicago, 1891) and the James Charnley House (Chicago, 1891–1892). However, it was the Chicago Stock Exchange, built at the height of the Chicago World’s Fair in 1893, that was undoubtedly the magnum opus of their career. The interior of the building was decorated with lavish organic designs inspired by the flora and fauna of the prairie landscape exemplary of their uniquely Midwestern style of Art Nouveau. Although the partnership ended in 1895, Adler and Sullivan forever changed the architectural landscape of Chicago with more than 180 buildings designed during the 15 years they worked together.

Auction Results Dankmar Adler and Louis Sullivan