Frank Lloyd Wright, the Art Institute, and the Robie House, 1900–1910

The Frank Lloyd Wright Trust, in partnership with the Art Institute of Chicago, presents Frank Lloyd Wright, the Art Institute, and the Robie House, 1900–1910.

Kathryn Smith explores the exhibitions of his work that Wright organized and presented with the Chicago Architectural Club at the Art Institute during his Chicago years, and discusses the ways in which these exhibitions articulated his seminal design philosophy and won over his detractors. Wright had substantial ties to the Art Institute during the first decade of the 20th century when he created the Prairie style, finally and fully expressed in the Robie House. Daniel Catton Rich, Director of the Art Institute during the 1950s, was among those leaders who spearheaded the campaign to save the Robie House from demolition in 1957.

Kathryn SmithKathryn Smith is an architectural historian and preservationist based in Los Angeles, who lectures and writes on Frank Lloyd Wright. Her recent book Wright on Exhibit, published by Princeton University Press and supported by a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship, was selected as one of the 25 best books of 2017 by Metropolis Magazine. Wright organized over 100 exhibitions over his lifetime. Smith demonstrates that Wright was an artist-architect projecting an avant-garde program, an innovator who expanded the palette of installation design as technology evolved, and a social activist driven to revolutionize society through design. Smith’s other books include Frank Lloyd Wright: American Master, Frank Lloyd Wright, Hollyhock House, Olive Hill: Buildings and Projects for Aline Barnsdall, and Schindler House.


Friday, April 5, 2019


3 - 4 pm


Fullerton Hall, The Art Institute of Chicago, 111 S Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL 60603


Free with admission to the Art Institute

Banner image:
Frank Lloyd Wright Exhibition, Chicago Architectural Club, The Art Institute of Chicago, 1907. Courtesy of Kathryn Smith.