The William Winslow House, the first home that Frank Lloyd Wright designed when working on his own and one of his prettiest facades, is coming on the market later this month for the first time since 1955. The asking price will be $2.4 million.
Designed in 1893 for a client whose ironwork graces the facade of the old Carson Pirie & Scott store and many other landmarks, the River Forest house is considered one of Wright’s first big steps away from the conventional residential architecture of the day. Its broad roof overhang shelters a dark band of plaster ornamentation, and below that are walls of orange Roman brick—longer and lower than standard brick—with an ornately decorated white framework emphasizing the front door.
“I look at it and think, in 1893 there was nothing else on Earth that looked like this,” says Peter Walker, one of three sons of the late longtime owners, Bill and June Walker. “It was as radical as Picasso and Cubism, and it was done by this 26-year-old as his first job.”
Walker’s mother died last summer; his father, a prominent jingle writer, died in 1994. Walker, a TV production executive, has been prepping the home for sale. That entails installing a brand new kitchen in the original kitchen’s footprint, some cosmetic painting, and clearing away overgrown landscaping that obscured some of Wright’s details.