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frank lloyd wright Quotes

Frank Lloyd Wright Quotes

Birth Date: 1867-06-08 (Saturday, June 8th, 1867)
Date of Death: 1959-04-09 (Thursday, April 9th, 1959)


frank lloyd wright life timeline

A male servant of American architect Frank Lloyd Wright set fire to the living quarters of the architect s Wisconsin home, Taliesin, murdered seven people, and burned the living quarters to the ground. It is unknown if the servant was arrested or not.Saturday, August 15th, 1914
In New York City, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum opens to the public. It was designed by Frank Lloyd Wright.Wednesday, October 21st, 1959


    • If you would see how interwoven it is in the warp and woof of civilization ... go at night-fall to the top of one of the down-town steel giants and you may see how in the image of material man, at once his glory and his menace, is this thing we call a city. There beneath you is the monster, stretching acre upon acre into the far distance. High over head hangs the stagnant pall of its fetid breath, reddened with light from myriad eyes endlessly, everywhere blinking. Thousands of acres of cellular tissue, the city's flesh outspreads layer upon layer, enmeshed by an intricate network of veins and arteries radiating into the gloom, and in them, with muffled, persistent roar, circulating as the blood circulates in your veins, is the almost ceaseless beat of the activity to whose necessities it all conforms. The poisonous waste is drawn from the system of this gigantic creature by infinitely ramifying, thread-like ducts, gathering at their sensitive terminals matter destructive of its life, hurrying it to millions of small intestines to be collected in turn by larger, flowing to the great sewers, on to the drainage canal, and finally to the ocean.
    • Pictures deface walls oftener than they decorate them.
    • It is where life is fundamental and free that men develop the vision needed to reveal the human soul in the blossoms it puts forth. ... In a great workshop like Chicago this creative power germinates, even though the brutality and selfish preoccupation of the place drive it elsewhere for bread. Men of this type have loved Chicago, have worked for her, and believed in her. The hardest thing they have to bear is her shame. These men could live and work here when to live and work in New York would stifle their genius and fill their purse.... New York still believes that art should be imported; brought over in ships; and is a quite contented market place. So while New York has reproduced much and produced nothing, Chicago's achievements in architecture have gained world-wide recognition as a distinctively American architecture.
    • No house should ever be on a hill or on anything. It should be of the hill. Belonging to it. Hill and house should live together each the happier for the other.
    • So here I stand before you preaching organic architecture: declaring organic architecture to be the modern ideal.
    • The physician can bury his mistakes, but the architect can only advise his clients to plant vines.
    • I doubt if there is anything in the world uglier than a Midwestern city.
    • Nature is all the body of God we mortals will ever see.
    • Clear out 800,000 people and preserve it as a museum piece.
    • New York: Prison towers and modern posters for soap and whiskey. Pittsburgh: Abandon it.
    • If you're going to have centralization, why not have it!
    • Architecture is life, or at least it is life itself taking form and therefore it is the truest record of life as it was lived in the world yesterday, as it is lived today or ever will be lived.
    • Here I am, Philip, am I indoors or am I out? Do I take my hat off or keep it on?
    • Early in life I had to choose between honest arrogance and hypocritical humility. I chose honest arrogance and have seen no occasion to change.
    • God is the great mysterious motivator of what we call nature and it has been said often by philosophers, that nature is the will of God. And, I prefer to say that nature is the only body of God that we shall ever see. If we wish to know the truth concerning anything, we'll find it in the nature of that thing.
    • The thing always happens that you really believe in; and the belief in a thing makes it happen.
    • The screech and mechanical uproar of the big city turns the citified head, fills citified ears - as the song of birds, wind in the trees, animal cries, or as the voices and songs of his loved ones once filled his heart. He is sidewalk-happy.
    • New York is the biggest mouth in the world. It appears to be prime example of the herd instinct, leading the universal urban conspiracy to beguile man from his birthright (the good ground), to hang him by his eyebrows from skyhooks above hard pavement, to crucify him, sell him, or be sold by him.
    • 'The-Shadow-of-the-Wall-Primitive Instincts Still Alive'
    • To look at the cross-section of any plan of a big city is to look at something like the section of a fibrous tumor.
    • All fine architectural values are human values, else not valuable.
    • I find it hard to believe that the machine would go into the creative artist's hand even were that magic hand in true place. It has been too far exploited by industrialism and science at expense to art and true religion.
    • The present is the ever moving shadow that divides yesterday from tomorrow. In that lies hope.
    • A free America, democratic in the sense that our forefathers intended it to be, means just this: individual freedom for all, rich or poor, or else this system of government we call 'democracy' is only an expedient to enslave man to the machine and make him like it.
    • A great architect is not made by way of a brain nearly so much as he is made by way of a cultivated, enriched heart.
    • A man is a fool if he drinks before he reaches the age of 50, and a fool if he doesn't afterward.
    • A vital difference between the professional man and a man of business is that money making to the professional man should, by virtue of his assumption, be incidental; to the business man it is primary. Money has its limitations; while it may buy quantity, there is something beyond it and that is quality.
    • All I learned from Eliel Saarinen was how to make out an expense account.
    • An architect's most useful tools are an eraser at the drafting board - and a wrecking bar at the site.
    • An expert is a man who has stopped thinking - he knows!
    • An idea is salvation by imagination.
    • Architecture is the triumph of Human Imagination over materials, methods, and men, to put man into possession of his own Earth. It is at least the geometric pattern of things, of life, of the human and social world. It is at best that magic framework of reality that we sometimes touch upon when we use the word 'order.'
    • Bureaucrats: they are dead at 30 and buried at 60. They are like custard pies; you can't nail them to a wall.
    • Buildings, too, are children of Earth and Sun.
    • Chewing gum for the eyes.
    • Classicism is a mask and does not reflect transition. How can such a static expression allow interpretation of human life as we know it? A fire house should not resemble a French Chateau, a bank a Greek temple and a university a Gothic Cathedral. All of the '-isms' are imposition on life itself, by way of previous education.
    • Consider everything in the nature of a hanging fixture a weakness, and naked radiators an abomination.
    • Democracy is the opposite of totalitarianism, communism, fascism, or mobocracy.
    • Don't eat it. It will kill you before your time. Avoid it.
    • Eventually, I think Chicago will be the most beautiful great city left in the world. (1939)
    • Every great architect is - necessarily - a great poet. He must be a great original interpreter of his time, his day, his age.
    • 'Form follows function' - that has been misunderstood. Form and function should be one, joined in a spiritual union.
    • Freedom is from within.
    • Get the habit of analysis - analysis will, in time, enable synthesis to become your habit of mind.
    • Give me the luxuries of life and I will willingly do without the necessities.
    • Harvard takes perfectly good plums as students, and turns them into prunes.
    • He exposes all the function on the top and puts the form below. It's as if you were to wear your entrails on top of your head.
    • I believe in God, only I spell it 'Nature'. Study nature, love nature, stay close to nature. It will never fail you.
    • I believe totally in a capitalist system, I only wish that someone would try it.
    • I can see the sham - but where's the rock?
    • I feel coming on a strange disease - humility.
    • I have been black and blue in some spot, somewhere, almost all my life from too intimate contacts with my own furniture. (1931)
    • I think Ms. Monroe's architecture is extremely good architecture.
    • I would like to have a free architecture. Architecture that belonged where you see it standing - and is a grace to the landscape instead of a disgrace.
    • I wouldn't mind seeing opera die. Ever since I was a boy, I regarded opera as a ponderous anachronism, almost the equivalent of smoking.
    • I'm all in favor of keeping dangerous weapons out of the hands of fools. Let's start with typewriters.
    • I've been accused of saying I was the greatest architect in the world and if I had said so, I don't think it would be very arrogant, because I don't believe there are many [great architects] - if any. For 500 years what we call architecture has been phony.
    • If it keeps up, man will atrophy all his limbs but the push-button finger.
    • It (New York City) is a great monument to the power of money and greed:a race for rent.
    • Less is only more where more is no good.
    • Life always rides in strength to victory, not through internationalism: but only through the direct responsibility of the individual.
    • Maybe we can show government how to operate better as a result of better architecture.
    • Mechanization best serves mediocrity.
    • Move the table.
    • Nature is my manifestation of God. I go to nature every day for inspiration in the day's work. I follow in building the principles which nature has used in its domain.
    • No stream rises higher than its source. Whatever man might build, could never express or reflect more than he was. He could record neither more nor less than he had learned of life when the buildings were built.
    • Organic architecture seeks superior sense of use and a finer sense of comfort, expressed in organic simplicity.
    • Organic buildings are the strength and lightness of the spiders' spinning, buildings qualified by light, bred by native character to environment, married to the ground.
    • Respect the masterpiece. It is true reverence to man. There is no quality so great, none so much needed now.
    • Simplicity and repose are the qualities that measure the true value of any work of art.
    • Space is the breath of art.
    • Space. The continual becoming: invisible fountain from which all rhythms flow and to which they must pass. Beyond time or infinity.
    • The architect must be a prophet: a prophet in the true sense of the term. If he can't see at least ten years ahead, don't call him an 'architect.'
    • The heart is the chief feature of a functioning mind.
    • The longer I live the more beautiful life becomes. If you foolishly ignore beauty, you will soon find yourself without it. Your life will be impoverished. But if you invest in beauty, it will remain with you all the days of your life.
    • The mother art is architecture. Without an architecture of our own, we have no soul of our own civilization.
    • The one on my board right now.
    • The scientist has marched in and taken the place of the poet. But one day somebody will find the solution to the problems of the world and remember, it will be a poet, not a scientist.
    • The space within becomes the reality of the building.
    • The truth is more important than the facts.
    • There is nothing more uncommon than common sense.
    • 'Think simple' as my old master used to say. Meaning, reduce the whole of its parts into the simplest terms, getting back to first principles.
    • Tip the world on its side and everything loose will land in Los Angeles.
    • Toleration and liberty are the foundations of a great republic.
    • True ornament is not a matter of prettifying externals. It is organic with the structure it adorns, whether a person, a building, or a park. At its best it is an emphasis of structure, a realization in graceful terms of the nature of that which is ornamented.
    • We should have a system of economics that is structure, that is organic tools. We do not have it. We are all hanging by our eyebrows from skyhooks economically, just as we are architecturally.
    • Well, now that he's finished one building, he'll go write four books about it.
    • Why, I just shake the buildings out of my sleeves.
    • Why organize it!
    • Youth is a quality, not a matter of circumstances.
    • He's the greatest architect of the nineteenth century.
    • His place in history is secure. His continuing influence is assured. This country's architectural achievements would be unthinkable without him. He has been a teacher to us all.
    • So long, Frank Lloyd Wright. I can't believe your song is gone so soon. I barely learned the tune
    • Among the great modern architects, Louis Sullivan, Frank Lloyd Wright, and Louis Kahn were arguably deists. ... Wright's use of the word 'nature' did not mean only what-we-find-outdoors. It was something deeper. Wright knew that when people speak of the 'nature of things' they mean their very essence, the that-which-makes-them-what- they-are, which is always and only one step away from that-who-makes- them-what-they-are. ... Wright thought not that he was God but that he brought or allowed God into the world through what he did, creating and designing. ... Wright actually thought himself a prophet, which of course is a different to being God, or an angel. ... bringing God into the world in an act of something like mid-wifery from the womb of nature, is not at all Moses-like. It is not a bringing down of Law from on high after personal coaching from God, but a bringing forth of a God already there in potential. There is no presumption of having seen or met God of the Bible. One makes the God one believes in happen.
    • frank lloyd wright

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