Maker: Frank Lloyd Wright (American, Richland Center, Wisconsin 1867–1959 Phoenix, Arizona)

Date: 1912

Culture: American

Medium: Glass, zinc

Dimensions: 86 1/4 x 28 x 2 in. (219.1 x 71.1 x 5.1 cm)

Classification: Glass

Credit Line: Purchase, The Edgar J. Kaufmann Foundation and Edward C. Moore Jr. Gifts, 1967

Accession Number: 67.231.1

Rights and Reproduction: © 2017 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York


The crowning feature of the so-called playhouse--an addition to the Avery Coonley estate, in Riverside, Illinois, designed by Wright in 1907--was the clerestory containing more than thirty windows, each one slightly different. A marked contrast to Wright’s early designs derived from nature, the windows are purely geometric in composition and feature bright, mostly primary colors. The unusual design, which Wright later referred to as a “kinder-symphony,” may have been inspired by a parade; the colored glass simulates a haphazard, yet controlled, arrangement of balloons, confetti, and flags. This triptych, comprising the largest windows in the clerestory, was the focal point of the playhouse--actually a kindergarten operated by Mrs. Coonley.