"Usonia" Unveiled at The SC Johnson Gallery: At Home with Frank Lloyd Wright

New Tours on SC Johnson Campus Feature Famous Architect's Artifacts and Revolutionary Designs

Apr 18, 2013, 12:02 ET from SC Johnson

RACINE, Wis., April 18, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Frank Lloyd Wright, one of the world's most celebrated architects, and SC Johnson, the family company known for trusted home products such as Pledge® and Windex®, have enjoyed a robust partnership for more than 75 years. That legacy continues as SC Johnson announces 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 and open to the public starting Friday, May 3, 2013.

(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130418/CG97287)

The exciting new exhibit is the most recent addition of Wright artifacts to the campus and celebrates "Usonia," a term which describes Wright's architectural vision for the development of cities featuring practical, yet beautiful, homes for the middle-class. Usonian homes took a new approach to construction, utilizing less-expensive materials and commonly excluding basements and attics. A strong visual connection between the interior and exterior spaces is an important characteristic of Wright's Usonian homes.  Wright put great emphasis on the main living areas, including the fireplace, encouraging families to gather together. Within this concept, Wright pioneered new and innovative ideas related to energy, space and material efficiency.

"The Usonia exhibit is a continuation of our ongoing efforts to showcase Wright's profound influence on families and the American home at The Gallery," said Kelly M. Semrau, Senior Vice President – Global Corporate Affairs, Communication and Sustainability for SC Johnson. "We are thrilled to welcome visitors from around the world to view Wright's legendary collection of artifacts, along with the inspired architecture here on SC Johnson's campus."

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.

"The exhibit is a glimpse of Wright's answers to the greater question of how to design beautiful spaces that are both affordable and complementary to their natural surroundings," said Brady Roberts, Chief Curator of The Milwaukee Art Museum. "The objects in this exhibition are not only stunning, but offer great insight into Wright's practices which anticipated the current trend of sustainable architecture."

Visitors will also see Wright's approach of matching the beauty of a home's exterior with its interior, 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 which features a collection of more than 800 items. The Gallery is co-curated by Bruce Brooks Pfeiffer, Archives Director at Taliesin West, Ariz., and Roberts.

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, nearly 5,000 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 Carnauba: A Son's Memoir at The Golden Rondelle Theater.

All tours also include a visit to The Lily Pad, a gift shop featuring distinct SC Johnson and architecture-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 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 U.S., the company is one of the world's leading manufacturers of household cleaning products and products for home storage, air care, and insect control. 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

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

SOURCE SC Johnson

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