Embark on a remarkable journey through the scenic roads of Wisconsin and discover the architectural marvels created by the legendary Frank Lloyd Wright. With the Taliesin Motorcycle Exploration, you have the opportunity to explore the works of one of America’s most renowned architects, all while enjoying the breathtaking beauty of the surrounding landscape.
Frank Lloyd Wright’s legacy is deeply intertwined with the state of Wisconsin, where his innovative designs and signature organic architecture come to life. From his birthplace to some of his most impressive structures, this self-guided tour takes you on a captivating journey through nine counties in southern Wisconsin.
The dramatic bluffs and coulees of southern Wisconsin served as an unparalleled source of inspiration for Wright. More than a third of his buildings are proudly listed on the National Register of Historic Places, testaments to his unparalleled vision and creative genius.
If you are a fan of architecture, history, or simply seeking a unique adventure, the Taliesin Motorcycle Exploration will allow you to delve into the world of Frank Lloyd Wright like never before. Plan your trip, and get ready to discover the wonders of Wisconsin’s roads and the mesmerizing structures that define Wright’s legacy.
SC Johnson Administration Building and Research Tower – Racine
When exploring the architectural wonders of Wisconsin, a visit to the SC Johnson Administration Building and Research Tower in Racine is a must. Serving as the global headquarters for SC Johnson, a renowned household cleaning product manufacturer, these structures showcase the genius of famed architect Frank Lloyd Wright.
The Administration Building, constructed in 1939, is widely recognized as one of the top 25 buildings of the 20th century. Its Great Workroom, boasting a half-acre of open space adorned with tree-inspired columns, leaves visitors in awe. Immerse yourself in the ambiance of this extraordinary space and witness Wright’s meticulous attention to detail.
The Research Tower, completed in the 1950s, stands as one of the tallest cantilevered buildings in the world. Marvel at its innovative design and the use of groundbreaking materials, which exemplify Wright’s forward-thinking approach to architecture.
During your Taliesin Motorcycle Exploration, make sure not to miss the opportunity to explore the SC Johnson Administration Building and Research Tower in Racine. Immerse yourself in the brilliance of Wright’s architectural vision and gain a deeper appreciation for his legacy.
The SC Johnson Administration Building and Research Tower in Racine showcase Frank Lloyd Wright’s genius and innovation.
Wingspread – Wind Point
Wingspread, located in Wind Point, is the remarkable family estate of H.F. Johnson Jr., the visionary leader of the SC Johnson Company. Designed by the legendary architect Frank Lloyd Wright, this sprawling house showcases Wright’s genius and seamlessly blends into the enchanting woodland and prairie surroundings. Completed in 1939, it stands as a testament to Wright’s mastery of natural materials and his commitment to organic design principles.
The highlight of Wingspread is its 30-foot chimney, a prominent feature that commands attention and adds a sense of grandeur to the estate. Inside, the teepee-inspired ceiling draws the eye skyward, creating a unique and awe-inspiring space. Wright’s meticulous attention to detail is evident throughout the house, making it a must-visit destination for architecture enthusiasts.
Experience the architectural brilliance of Frank Lloyd Wright up close by including a stop at Wingspread during your Taliesin Motorcycle Exploration. Take in the harmonious fusion of nature and design as you explore the four wings of this extraordinary estate. Don’t miss the opportunity to immerse yourself in the legacy of Wright’s inventive and visionary spirit.
“Wingspread is a testament to Frank Lloyd Wright’s innovative approach to architecture, seamlessly blending into its natural surroundings.” – Architecture Enthusiast Magazine
“Visiting Wingspread was like stepping into a masterpiece. The attention to detail and the stunning use of natural materials left me in awe of Wright’s genius.” – House Design Journal
- Marvel at the impressive 30-foot chimney that graces the exterior of Wingspread.
- Explore the four wings of the estate, each showcasing unique architectural features.
- Admire the teepee-inspired ceiling, a true masterpiece of design and craftsmanship.
- Take in the tranquil beauty of the surrounding woodland and prairie.
Burnham – Milwaukee
Explore one of Frank Lloyd Wright’s remarkable creations, Burnham, located in Milwaukee. These homes are part of the American System-Built Homes project, designed to provide affordable and beautiful housing for typical American families. Built between 1915 and 1917, only 16 of these homes survive today, making them rare architectural gems.
Take a guided tour of the Burnham home on West Burnham Street and Layton Boulevard to get a closer look at Wright’s vision of accessible and aesthetically pleasing homes. Trained docents will share insights into the design principles and innovations behind these historic houses.
While in Milwaukee, immerse yourself in the vibrant food scene, where classic custard stands and iconic Bloody Marys await. Indulge in local delicacies as you savor the flavors of the city.
Experience Affordable Elegance
“The American System-Built Homes project aimed to make well-designed homes accessible to ordinary families. Burnham is a testament to Frank Lloyd Wright’s commitment to blending affordability with architectural beauty.” – Trained Docent
Must-Try Milwaukee Delights
- Visit classic custard stands and enjoy creamy, frozen treats that have been a local favorite for generations.
- Savor an iconic Bloody Mary, a Wisconsin staple that often comes with unique garnishes and spices.
Monona Terrace – Madison
Monona Terrace, located on Madison’s isthmus, was a longtime dream of Frank Lloyd Wright. He envisioned it as a dream civic center linking Lake Monona to the Wisconsin State Capitol. Despite facing several setbacks, the terrace was finally completed in 1997. Today, it serves as a popular venue for meetings, conventions, and community programs.
Visit Monona Terrace during your Taliesin Motorcycle Exploration to experience Wright’s architectural vision overlooking the lake.
While in Madison, explore the State Capitol and indulge in classic Wisconsin fare at The Old Fashioned.
First Unitarian Society Meeting House – Madison
The First Unitarian Society Meeting House in Madison is one of Frank Lloyd Wright’s most famous commissions and a key structure defining his contributions to American culture. Completed in 1951, it showcases Wright’s innovative use of materials and design elements. Taliesin Associated Architects have added two major additions to the original meeting house, expanding its space for worship and community programs.
Exploring Iconic Church Architecture
When visiting the First Unitarian Society Meeting House during your Taliesin Motorcycle Exploration, you’ll have the opportunity to explore the unique features and design principles that make this building significant. From its distinct, angular exterior to its soaring interior spaces, every aspect of the meeting house reflects Wright’s vision.
“The First Unitarian Society Meeting House stands as a testament to Frank Lloyd Wright’s genius in blending form and function. The harmonious integration of nature and architecture creates a deeply spiritual atmosphere.”
– Architecture Enthusiast Magazine
Embrace the Architectural Legacy
Immerse yourself in the history and beauty of this iconic church architecture. Take part in guided tours to gain insight into Wright’s design philosophy and the significance of this building in the context of American architecture. Experience the tranquil ambiance and peaceful surroundings that make the First Unitarian Society Meeting House a must-visit for architecture enthusiasts.
Stay at a Historic Bed and Breakfast
Add a touch of charm to your Taliesin Motorcycle Exploration by staying at one of Madison’s historic bed and breakfasts. These beautifully restored accommodations offer a unique and character-filled experience that complements your architectural journey. Relax and unwind in a cozy room, enjoy a delicious homemade breakfast, and embrace the warmth of Midwestern hospitality.
Plan your visit to the First Unitarian Society Meeting House in Madison and witness firsthand the brilliance of Frank Lloyd Wright’s church architecture. Discover the intricate details and visionary concepts that continue to inspire architects and design enthusiasts around the world. Experience architectural excellence and immerse yourself in the captivating atmosphere of this historic landmark.
Taliesin and Frank Lloyd Wright Visitor Center – Spring Green
Taliesin, Frank Lloyd Wright’s 800-acre estate overlooking the Wisconsin River, is a must-visit for any fan of the architect. Managed by the Taliesin Preservation, the estate offers several touring options to give visitors a firsthand glimpse into Wright’s life and inspiration. Explore the grounds, learn about his design philosophy, and discover the ongoing renovations that have preserved Taliesin’s legacy.
Make sure to visit the Frank Lloyd Wright Visitor Center as well, which provides further insights into the architect’s work. The visitor center showcases exhibits on Wright’s life, his architectural approach, and his impact on the world of design. Immerse yourself in the visionary mind of Frank Lloyd Wright and gain a deeper understanding of his contributions to the field of architecture.
Taliesin is the heart of any Taliesin Motorcycle Exploration, so don’t miss this architectural gem. Experience the beauty of the estate, the tranquility of the Wisconsin River, and the enduring legacy of Frank Lloyd Wright.
Wyoming Valley School Cultural Arts Center – Spring Green
Located just miles from Taliesin in the picturesque town of Spring Green, the Wyoming Valley School is a cultural arts center that celebrates and promotes the vibrant arts and culture of the surrounding region. This unique establishment holds a special place in architectural history as it was designed and donated by the renowned architect, Frank Lloyd Wright, in honor of his mother, Anna Lloyd-Jones Wright.
At the Wyoming Valley School, you can immerse yourself in a diverse range of artistic experiences. The center offers dedicated spaces for workshops, performances, lectures, and exhibits. Whether you’re a seasoned artist or simply someone who appreciates the arts, there are plenty of opportunities for everyone to get involved and explore their creative side.
Participating in the workshops at the Wyoming Valley School is a fantastic way to learn new skills and engage with different art forms. From painting and sculpture to photography and ceramics, the center caters to a wide variety of interests. Unleash your imagination, experiment with various techniques, and discover the joy of self-expression in a supportive and inspiring environment.
Throughout the year, the Wyoming Valley School hosts an array of performances, including music concerts, theatrical productions, and dance recitals. Whether you prefer classical music, modern dance, or experimental theater, you’re sure to find something that captivates and delights you. These performances showcase the incredible talent of both local and visiting artists, providing a rich cultural experience for all.
“Art enables us to find ourselves and lose ourselves at the same time.” – Thomas Merton
When visiting Spring Green for your Taliesin Motorcycle Exploration, consider enhancing your experience by staying at the nearby Round Barn Lodge or Aldebaran Farm. Both accommodations have ties to Frank Lloyd Wright’s family and offer a charming and comfortable retreat after a day filled with artistic inspiration.
Immerse yourself in the rich tapestry of arts and culture at the Wyoming Valley School Cultural Arts Center. Marvel at the legacy of Frank Lloyd Wright’s architectural genius while exploring the diverse artistic offerings of Spring Green. This cultural treasure is not to be missed!
AD German Warehouse – Richland Center
The AD German Warehouse in Frank Lloyd Wright’s hometown of Richland Center is a testament to the architect’s genius and his significant contributions to the world of design. Constructed in 1921, this warehouse stands as one of Wright’s notable commissions from that period.
What sets the AD German Warehouse apart is its stunning sculptural ornamentation, showcasing Wright’s meticulous attention to detail. The building features a captivating frieze of repeated cast concrete motifs encircling its top, creating a visually striking and unique architectural feature.
To fully appreciate the architectural and historical significance of the AD German Warehouse, visitors should make it a point to explore this remarkable structure. It is the perfect opportunity to immerse yourself in Wright’s artistic vision and experience the culmination of his innovative design principles.
While in Richland Center, take a moment to indulge in the local culinary scene. Head over to Mellem’s Fish House, where you can savor delicious seafood dishes that perfectly complement your exploration of Frank Lloyd Wright’s legacy.
Continue your journey through the world of architecture and design by visiting other notable landmarks associated with Wright. Each stop promises a unique and awe-inspiring experience that highlights the enduring impact of this visionary architect.
The AD German Warehouse showcases Frank Lloyd Wright’s sculptural ornamentation.
American Players Theatre – Spring Green
American Players Theatre (APT) in Spring Green is a must-visit destination for theater enthusiasts during your Taliesin Motorcycle Exploration. Located amidst the breathtaking natural landscapes of Spring Green, APT presents outstanding performances in a truly immersive environment, allowing you to experience theater like never before.
At APT, you can enjoy world-class theater productions while surrounded by the captivating beauty of the Wisconsin countryside. The open-air theater creates a unique atmosphere, enhancing your connection with the performances and the richness of the storytelling. From classic plays to contemporary works, APT offers a diverse repertoire that caters to all theater lovers.
“APT has consistently produced performances of an order that should rank it among America’s finest classical theaters.”
– The Wall Street Journal
Make the most of your theater experience at APT by indulging in a delightful picnic amidst the natural surroundings. You can either bring your own picnic, complete with your favorite treats, or conveniently order from APT’s picnic options. Relish delicious food while immersing yourself in the artistic ambiance of the theater.
Visiting APT during your Taliesin Motorcycle Exploration allows you to delve into the creative genius of Frank Lloyd Wright and appreciate the diversity of the artistic offerings in Spring Green. Book your tickets in advance to secure your spot and make unforgettable memories at America’s finest classical theater.
House on the Rock – Spring Green
While not designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, the House on the Rock in Spring Green is a captivating architectural attraction in its own right. Started by Alex Jordan in 1945, this man-made retreat showcases an array of exotic, unusual, and astonishing displays and collections. Marvel at the limitless possibilities of imagination and creativity as you explore this unique destination. Plan a visit to the House on the Rock to add a touch of enchantment to your Taliesin Motorcycle Exploration.
Located in Spring Green, the House on the Rock is a testament to the artistic vision of Alex Jordan. This architectural landmark is renowned for its awe-inspiring displays and unconventional collections. From sprawling gardens to towering statues, the House on the Rock offers an immersive experience that defies expectation.
Step inside and discover a world of wonders, where each room holds a new surprise. The House on the Rock features unique exhibits like the Infinity Room, a cantilevered glass walkway that extends over the scenic valley below. As you wander through the various galleries, you’ll encounter an eclectic mix of artifacts, including intricate music machines, antique guns, and even a colossal whale.
One of the highlights of the House on the Rock is the Carousel Room, where you’ll find a carousel with over 200 hand-carved animals. The room is bathed in a mesmerizing display of lights and music, creating a magical atmosphere that transports visitors to another time.
Alex Jordan’s Vision
“I’m not building for other people. I’m building for myself. I always have, and I probably always will.”
Alex Jordan’s vision for the House on the Rock was to create a place where visitors could escape reality and immerse themselves in a world of fantasy and imagination. His unique architectural creation has become one of Wisconsin’s most iconic attractions, drawing visitors from far and wide.
- Marvel at the breathtaking views from the Infinity Room, suspended high above the treetops.
- Explore the awe-inspiring collections, from vintage cars and antique dolls to rare weapons and mechanical marvels.
- Walk through the Streets of Yesterday, a recreation of a bygone era complete with storefronts and period-accurate displays.
- Experience the wonder of the Organ Room, where automated musical instruments fill the air with enchanting melodies.
Whether you’re a fan of architecture, history, or simply appreciate the extraordinary, a visit to the House on the Rock is an adventure you won’t soon forget. Immerse yourself in the whimsical world created by Alex Jordan and discover the magic that awaits at this architectural marvel in Spring Green.
Nearby Attractions and Accommodations for Your Taliesin Visit
Extend your Taliesin visit to fully immerse yourself in the beauty and charm of the surrounding Driftless area. After exploring the architectural wonders of Taliesin, there are plenty of nearby attractions to discover.
For theater enthusiasts, a visit to the American Players Theatre is a must. Experience world-class theater performances while surrounded by the natural beauty of Wisconsin. It’s the perfect way to complement your Taliesin adventure.
Another fascinating attraction in the area is the Cave of the Mounds, a geological marvel with intricate formations. Take a self-paced tour and marvel at the stunning natural beauty that lies beneath the surface.
When it’s time to unwind, choose from a variety of unique and comfortable accommodations. The Spring Valley Inn and the Wisconsin Riverside Resort offer a peaceful retreat where you can relax and recharge.
Don’t forget to also explore the local culture by visiting the Spring Green General Store and experiencing the charm of the Silver Star Bed & Breakfast Inn. These places offer a taste of the authentic and rich heritage of the area.