As the century turned, Frank Lloyd Wright’s life and career kicked into overdrive. The projects that sprang from his Oak Park Studio were true masterpieces, including the Darwin Martin House, the Susan Lawrence Dana-Thomas House, Robie House and the “Noble Room” Unity Temple. The magnificent Wasmuth Portfolio was created illustrating the genius of the first 20 years of Wright’s work.
He also shattered his personal life by leaving his wife Catherine and their children for Mamah Cheney, resulting in his move to Wisconsin and the creation of his second home, Taliesin. While this scandal had an impact on his career, the second decade of the 20th century still produced a wealth of significant projects. These included Midway Gardens, the Imperial Hotel and Hollyhock House. Wright’s personal life was again turned upside down with the murders and fire at Taliesin. While all of this was going on with the life and work of Frank Lloyd Wright, events in world history included the Wright Brothers’ first flight, the Model T Ford introduced, the sinking of the Titanic, World War I, Prohibition and Women gaining the right to vote.
By Ken Simpson