Unity Temple inscribed as a World Heritage site

The World Heritage Committee has officially inscribed The 20th-Century Architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright, which includes eight major works spanning 50 years of Wright’s career, on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

“This recognition by UNESCO is a significant way for us to reconfirm how important Frank Lloyd Wright was to the development of modern architecture around the world,” says Barbara Gordon, executive director of the Frank Lloyd Wright Building Conservancy, an international organization dedicated to the preservation of all of Wright’s remaining built works.

“Our hope is that the inscription of these eight major works also brings awareness to the importance of preserving all of Wright’s 400 buildings as a vital part of our artistic, cultural and architectural heritage. All communities where a Wright building stands should appreciate what they have and share in the responsibility to protect their local—and world—heritage.”

There are more than 1,000 World Heritage sites around the world, and the group of eight Wright sites is now among only 24 sites in the U.S. The collection represents the first modern architecture designation in the country on the prestigious list. The sites include Unity Temple, Robie House, Taliesin, Hollyhock House, Fallingwater, Jacobs I House, Taliesin West, the Guggenheim.

“Frank Lloyd Wright described Unity Temple as ‘my contribution to modern architecture.’ The building is one of the first monumental edifices created entirely in concrete; Wright’s radical departure from traditional materials and visionary experimentation established Unity Temple’s reputation as among the most innovative structures of the 20th century,” states Heidi Ruehle, Executive Director of the Unity Temple Restoration Foundation.

“The inscription as a World Heritage site will help introduce Unity Temple to a larger international audience, creating the opportunity for thousands to experience Wright’s architectural masterpiece.”

More information about Frank Lloyd Wright and UNESCO World Heritage nomination can be found at the Frank Lloyd Wright Building Conservancy’s website.