Frank Lloyd Wright’s “Usonia” Now on Display at SC Johnson
Company’s Free Tour Program Invites Visitors To Explore Inspired Architecture, Artifacts and More
RACINE, WIS., May 3, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — Today, SC Johnson unveils Usonia: Frank Lloyd Wright’s Vision Of The American Home, a new, free exhibit at The SC Johnson Gallery: At Home with Frank Lloyd Wright, located on the company’s Racine, Wis. campus. Wright and SC Johnson – the family company known for trusted home products such as Windex® and Pledge® – have enjoyed a robust partnership for more than 75 years. This exhibit expands on that legacy celebrating “Usonia,” a term that describes Wright’s architectural vision for the development of cities featuring affordable and practical, yet beautiful, homes.
Wright designed his first Usonian home during the Great Depression as a way to bring great architecture to every person, a challenge which concerned him throughout his career. Usonian homes took a new approach to construction, utilizing less-expensive materials and commonly excluded basements and attics. There was always a strong visual connection between the interior and exterior spaces as well as a focus on the main living areas, including the fireplace, encouraging families to gather together. Through his Usonian period, Wright pioneered new and innovative ideas related to energy, space and material efficiency.
“We take great pride in The Gallery as we strive to showcase Wright’s profound influence on families and the American home,” said Kelly M. Semrau, Senior Vice President – Global Corporate Affairs, Communication and Sustainability for SC Johnson. “We look forward to sharing Usonia and Wright’s legendary collection of artifacts, along with his inspiring architectural designs, here on SC Johnson’s campus with visitors from around the world.”
Frank Lloyd Wright’s Usonian Vision
In 1936, Wright completed his first Usonian house for Herbert Jacobs, a newspaper man located in Madison, Wis. By viewing an “exploded” model on special loan from the Milwaukee Art Museum, exhibit visitors can explore the exact proportions, scale and natural materials Wright used to create what is now known as Jacobs House I. Other highlights of the exhibit include a model of Jester House that offers visitors an appreciation for Wright’s ability to adapt design to beautiful, natural surroundings.
“Wright is one of the most celebrated architects in history who sought to design beautiful spaces that were affordable and complementary to their natural surroundings,” said Bruce Brooks Pfeiffer, Co-curator of The SC Johnson Gallery: At Home with Frank Lloyd Wright and Archives Director at the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation. “This exhibition is a wonderful opportunity to view the stunning results of his vision, and also offers insight into his pioneering efforts into sustainable architecture – a passion of his half a century before it became popular.”
Visitors will also see Wright’s approach of matching the beauty of a home’s exterior with its interior, which is fundamental to the Usonian idea. Several important furniture pieces that resulted from Wright’s 1955 venture with Heritage-Henredon furniture makers will be on display.
The Gallery, housed in the award-winning Fosters + Partners-designed Fortaleza Hall on SC Johnson’s campus, is also home to the Frank Lloyd Wright Research Library that features a collection of more than 800 items. The Gallery is co-curated by Brady Roberts, Chief Curator of The Milwaukee Art Museum and Pfeiffer.
SC Johnson and Frank Lloyd Wright
The relationship between Frank Lloyd Wright and H.F. Johnson Jr. began 75 years ago. The first building Wright designed for the Johnson company was the Administration Building in 1936, followed by the Research Tower in 1944. Today, more than 6,000 Wright enthusiasts and admirers visit the Administration Building and the SC Johnson campus each year to marvel at the still-modern architecture. From the miles of Pyrex glass tubing to the dendriform columns the Administration Building, one of the few Wright commercial designs to continue to operate in its original state, is truly a unique work of art that reflects the innovation, creation and adventure that is still the spirit of SC Johnson today.
Tours Are Free & Open to the Public
In addition to The Gallery, free public tours also provide different views of the company’s inspired architecture, including:
- The Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Administration Building
- The award-winning Foster + Partners-designed Fortaleza Hall
- Film showings of the Academy Award-winning documentary To Be Alive! and the acclaimed Carnaúba: A Son’s Memoir at The Golden Rondelle Theater
All tours also include a visit to The Lily Pad, a gift shop featuring exclusive SC Johnson memorabilia and brand gift merchandise, as well as Frank Lloyd Wright-inspired items. For more information about tours of the SC Johnson campus, please call 262-260-2154, email Tours@scj.com, or use the online scheduling tool at www.scjohnson.com/visit
ABOUT THE FRANK LLOYD WRIGHT FOUNDATION
The Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation owns both Taliesin West in Arizona and Taliesin in Wisconsin, operates the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture, owns and stewards the intellectual property and approved use of everything Wright designed or created (including licensed products and reproductions), jointly steers the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation Archives (The Museum of Modern Art | Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library, Columbia University, New York), and engages in a variety of meaningful outreach programs and partnerships. www.franklloydwright.org
About SC Johnson
SC Johnson is a family company dedicated to innovative, high-quality products, excellence in the workplace and a long-term commitment to the environment and the communities in which it operates. Based in the USA, the company is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of household cleaning products and products for home storage, air care, pest control and shoe care. It markets such well-known brands as GLADE®, KIWI®, OFF!®, PLEDGE®, RAID®, SCRUBBING BUBBLES®, SHOUT®, WINDEX® and ZIPLOC® in the U.S. and beyond, with brands marketed outside the U.S. including AUTAN®, TANA®, BAMA®, BAYGON®, BRISE®, KABIKILLER®, KLEAR®, MR. MUSCLE®, and RIDSECT®. The 127-year-old company, that generates $9 billion in sales, employs nearly 13,000 people globally and sells products in virtually every country around the world. www.scjohnson.com