The first time that I saw a Frank Lloyd's work, was in New York: The Guggenheim. Later we visited the Metropolitan, where they set up an area recreating one of the houses of Frank Lloyd Wright; well, part of the house. And finally we decided to go to Buffalo and take a tour.
But, why is Frank Lloyd Wright the great architect in USA?
He has a prolific career as an architect with almost 1000 buildings (residential and non-residential) in USA plus some works outside. But that is a consequence of being one of the best architects. The reason is his modern vision.
When He started during the Arts & Crafts times, at the end of 19th Century, Lloyd Wright broke with Sullivan. He began a separate practice with a different vision about what means American Architecture.
Through the turn of the century, Wright’s distinctively personal style was evolving. His work in these years foreshadowed his so-called “prairie style,” a term deriving from the publication in 1901 of “A Home in a Prairie Town” which he designed for the Ladies’ Home Journal.
Prairie houses were characterized by low, horizontal lines that were meant to blend with the flat landscape around them. Typically, these structures were built around a central chimney and consisted of broad open spaces instead of strictly defined rooms. Prairie houses deliberately blurred the distinction between interior space and the surrounding terrain. Wright acclaimed “the new reality that is space instead of matter.” About architectural interiors, he said that the “reality of a building is not the container but the space within.”
In the 1920’s, Wright explored the use of poured concrete and abstract sculptural ornamentation in residential construction. He developed a type of construction using precast “textile” concrete blocks which were bound together by steel rods and poured concrete.
Though well into his seventies by now, Wright’s work during the forties gives evidence of the continuing vitality of his powers of invention. In addition to rectangles, triangles, hexagons and octagons as the basis for residential floor plans, the circle and the helix appeared in his constructed work.
Lloyd Wright wasn't static. He evolved through the years from Prairie to Mid-Century Modern, but always with his own style. Because he never design just the building, he created a complete environment: interior (furniture, glass, fabrics...), the exterior and the landscape. Cause He believed that the space makes the people that inhabit it.