Window from the Avery Coonley Playhouse, Riverside, Illinois
This Frank Lloyd Wright window was one of many installed in a clerestory running the length of the commissioned J. Avery Coonley kindergarten playhouse, near Chicago. The geometric elements and bright colors were meant to conjure the image of a passing parade, while the horizontal lines complemented the building’s other vertical windows, which had similar designs.
While certainly aware of contemporary innovations in late-nineteenth-century European architecture, Wright also greatly admired the Japanese aesthetics that had heavily impacted American design since the 1870s. His own work was integral to the evolution of the distinctively American Prairie school of architecture that was emerging under his leadership at the beginning of the twentieth century in Chicago and the Midwest.