Frank Lloyd Wright Collection
The existence of the magnificent Frank Lloyd Wright archives is the result of visionary actions and hard work by those who knew and loved Wright. During his lifetime, the architect had declined to donate portions of his work to various museums and institutions, preferring to keep together his life's work. Upon Wright's death in 1959, Mrs. Wright gathered the archive of his work at Taliesin West, thereby preserving and keeping intact the visual and textual legacy of one of history's great geniuses. It was an unprecedented action, since architectural archives of such size and scope for a single architect did not exist at that time. Bruce Brooks Pfeiffer, first as Taliesin apprentice then as Director of the Frank Lloyd Wright Archives, curated and organized the archives since its inception, thereby earning the appreciation of Frank Lloyd Wright lovers everywhere. The Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library would like to acknowledge the dedication of the Taliesin staff to preserving Wright’s legacy.
Consulting the Collection
Starting September 16, 2013, selected materials from the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation Archives were made available for research and consultation by appointment only. Wright's project drawings are the first materials available in our incremental release of materials from this extensive Archive. The Avery Drawings & Archives staff is continuing to organize and prepare other materials in the Archives and will release additional materials (such as correspondence, photography, manuscripts) for consultation as they are processed.
If you are traveling to consult the Frank Lloyd Wright Archives, please confirm the date and time of your appointment with Drawings and Archives staff before making travel arrangements.
Please address all inquiries and requests for an appointment to firstname.lastname@example.org
Avery Library’s Department of Drawings & Archives holds other important collections of Frank Lloyd Wright material including approximately 1,000 architectural drawings (c. 1880-1959) and related archival documents. Major projects represented in our existing Wright collection include: Dana House, Fallingwater, Guggenheim Museum, and Wright's own home and studio in Oak Park, Ill.
Please direct inquiries about these materials to:
Avery Classics, our rare books collection, includes first edition and other rare volumes of Frank Lloyd Wrights’ published works.
Please direct inquiries about these materials to:
Image credit: The Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation Archives (The Museum of Modern Art | Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library, Columbia University, New York)
News & Events
Frank Lloyd Wright and the City: Density vs. Dispersal
Museum of Modern Art
February 1-June 1, 2014
Frank Lloyd Wright and the City: Density vs. Dispersal celebrates the recent joint acquisition of Frank Lloyd Wright’s extensive archive by MoMA and Columbia University’s Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library. Through an initial selection of drawings, films, and large-scale architectural models, the exhibition examines the tension in Wright’s thinking about the growing American city in the 1920s and 1930s, when he worked simultaneously on radical new forms for the skyscraper and on a comprehensive plan for the urbanization of the American landscape titled “Broadacre City.”
Pioneering Agreement with Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation
Columbia University, The Museum of Modern Art, and The Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation have announced that the vast archives of Frank Lloyd Wright (American, 1867-1959) have been jointly acquired by the University and the Museum and will become part of their permanent collections. Wright is considered by many to be one of the 20th century’s most influential architects, a figure whose iconic work helped define modernism. The American Institute of Architects, in a recent national survey, recognized him as “the greatest American architect of all time.”
Avery Library will be the repository for all paper-based archival contents, including architectural drawings, the extensive personal and professional correspondence as well as photographs including both personal and architectural photography of Wright’s works, interview tapes, transcripts and films. The Museum of Modern Art will house all three-dimensional works, including architectural models, architectural elements and design prototypes in the archives. The Archives add to Avery and MoMA existing collections of materials by Frank Lloyd Wright, and this joint acquisition signals a ground-breaking collaboration between the two institutions to insure long term access and preservation of the materials, at the same time providing opportunities to celebrate the collections through public programs and exhibitions, curricular integration, research interrogation and publications.
- New York Times article
- Columbia University News (press release)
- Columbia University Libraries News (press release)
- Video and Slideshow
Image credit: Frederick C. Robie residence, 1909.
The Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation Archives (The Museum of Modern Art | Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library, Columbia University, New York)