Starting the year off Wright

My sweet people surprised me for my birthday with a day trip to Bartlesville to visit the Price Tower. Taylor and I are both Frank Lloyd Wright fans so they knew this was the perfect birthday treat.

Kids at entry Price Tower It took us around an hour to get there from Tulsa, and as soon as you could see the Bartlesville skyline it was easy to spot the Price Tower. The building stands as “a tree that escaped the forest“ just as Wright intended. The Price Tower is the only skyscraper Wright designed to be brought to fruition. Having visited other famous Wright sites around the country, it was interesting to see the way Wright executed his signature style in this type of structure.

Close Price Tower Shot

When we arrived for our two o’clock tour, we were told it was full. Oh no! (The lesson here kids is always call ahead!) However the staff was so gracious and brought in another docent for us and let us enjoy drinks in their restaurant, The Copper Restaurant and Bar while we waited.

Viggo Copper Window


Willa Tay Kiss Price Tower

Our tour started in the entryway of the building where in place of the mural that Mr. Price had requested, Mr. Wright offered the “generous” compromise of a painted quote by Walt Whitman.  Then it was on the tiny elevator and up to the conference room and apartment used by the Price family. There were no photos allowed on the tour so I tried to snap a few each time we stepped outside.

Price elevator

Inside the little elevator

Tay Will Overlook FLW

Goff Building View

A view of the Bartlesville Community Center across the street

The last stop of the tour was Mr. Price’s office on the 19th floor and this was my favorite part. Even though the square footage of the space isn’t much, the natural light is amazing and you can only imagine Mr. Price feeling on top of the world running his business from such an inspired and modern place.

Price Tower tall shot

We had such a fun day and I loved hearing the children recognize some of the Wright design principles that are used in our own house, what they liked and didn’t like about them, and how it all made them feel. Their discussion reminded me of why I am a Frank Lloyd Wright fan. What he lacked in practicality, he made up for in uncompromising vision, and that is art and it awakens the mind to new possibilities.

Happy New Year everyone!

  1. The uncomprimising audacity and disturbance of great art and the love of the sharing. Your blog captures it all. What a joy.

  2. This was probably one of my favorite blogs of yours so far! Beautifully written! (well…technically typed lol) I’ve never been there but I enjoyed every detail you put into this. It made me use my imagination a little while I was reading this 🙂 You captured great pictures too so that ALWAYS makes a blog a lot more interesting to read! Thanks for sharing your birthday surprise!

  3. Oh my gosh, you guys have GOT to come to Lakeland, Florida. We have the largest collection of FLW in the world at Florida Southern College (13 structures!). It’s stunning. The school also recently built a Usonian House from plans made in 1939. As a crazy architecture enthusiast, it’s pretty surreal living just down the street. 🙂

  4. Have you been on any of the Frank Lloyd Wright tours in the Chicago area? There is a bicycle tour in Oak Park that takes you to 22 Wright-designed buildings. You should check it out!

  5. What I would give to pick your brain on raising your 5 beautiful children!! I have 1 daughter and feel like it’s the hardest job of my life!! Which it definitely is!!!

  6. I like the elevator 🙂 Especially the pictures on the ceiling, so cool!
    Must say I’m not particularly an art -or architecture- fan. Probably also because I know very little about it 😉 Out of curiosity I googled this Mr. Wright and came across this Fallingwater house in Chicago. Like it 🙂 Like how he uses natural and modern elements together. Love learning new stuff, hah! 😉
    So happy new year to you too 🙂 May 2016 be full of happiness, love and beautiful new experiences!

  7. Loved seeing the tower through your eyes. I too am a fan of FLW and cherish opportunities to see his mastery.

  8. Happy New Year to all of you and happy birthday…!

    Thank you for sharing your tours which are always insteresting!

  9. Sounds like you all had a lot of fun! I would love to take my kids to more outings like this, where they are learning and having fun at the same time. It really opens their wandering minds to the possibilities. Hope you had a very Happy Birthday, Natalie!

  10. Looks like an amazing experience and wonderful trip! You or someone years back told me we were birthday twins (28th) so with that said Happy Belated Birthday my dear! If you haven’t already (I’m sure you have) there are tons of Frank Lloyd Wright buildings here in Wisconsin! You guys should make a trip!!!!

  11. It’s always nice when Papa Bear can join us on our homeschooling adventures; it’s a nice break to have his companionship and help with the tribe 🙂

  12. We live in Canton, Ohio and there is a house on our street designed by Frank. Stop by anytime if you are looking for an out of state adventure! Also, happiest of birthdays and well wishes to you and your family in the new year!

  13. How neat to have such a building not far from home! I love how the whole family got involved and even combining birthday celebration with educational opportunity. Homeschooling at it’s finest:)

  14. Have you been to Frank Lloyd Wright’s school of architecture Talisen West in AZ? It is pretty cool. If you’re a FLW fan you should check it out. :]

    My husband was going to go there but didn’t like how in the summer they would have to move to Talisen East in WI due to the heat in AZ during summer, he wasn’t fond of all the moving. Or the heat.

    Also, those dinosaurs look awesome. I have a few dinosaur fossils and my students LOVE when I bring them out. They’re so fascinated by them.

  15. You should check out Falling Water in PA. The house is built around a waterfall. I was there. Was amazing.

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