Frank Lloyd Wright Quotes
1. I believe in God, only I spell it Nature.
2. An idea is salvation by imagination
3. A doctor can bury his mistakes, but an architect can only advise his clients to plant vines.
4. The longer I live the more beautiful life becomes. If you foolishly ignore beauty, you will soon find yourself without it. Your life will be impoverished. But if you invest in beauty, it will remain with you all the days of your life.
5. I’m all in favor of keeping dangerous weapons out of the hands of fools. Let’s start with typewriters.
6. Early in my career…I had to choose between an honest arrogance and a hypercritical humility… I deliberately choose an honest arrogance, and I’ve never been sorry.
7. As we live and as we are, Simplicity – with a capital “S” – is difficult to comprehend nowadays. We are no longer truly simple. We no longer live in simple terms or places. Life is a more complex struggle now. It is now valiant to be simple: a courageous thing to even want to be simple. It is a spiritual thing to comprehend what simplicity means.
8. Nature is my manifestation of God. I go to nature every day for inspiration in the day’s work.
9. Study nature, love nature, stay close to nature. It will never fail you.
10. A professional is one who does his best work when he feels the least like working.
11. The truth is more important than the facts.
12. There is nothing more uncommon than common sense.
13. Youth is not an age thing. It’s a quality. Once you’ve had it, you never lose it.
14. The thing always happens that you really believe in; and the belief in a thing makes it happen.
15. Tip the world over on its side and everything loose will land in Los Angeles.
16. I know the price of success: dedication, hard work, and an unremitting devotion to the things you want to see happen.
17. Television is chewing gum for the eyes.
18. Less is more only when more is too much.
19. Many wealthy people are little more than janitors of their possessions.
20. If it sells, it’s art.
21. You have to go wholeheartedly into anything in order to achieve anything worth having.
22. Youth is a circumstance you can’t do anything about. The trick is to grow up without getting old.
23. Imitation is always insult–not flattery.
24. Freedom lies within.
25. Every idea that is a true idea has a form, and is capable of many forms. The variety of forms of which it is capable determines the value of the idea. So by way of ideas, and your mastery of them in relation to what you are doing, will come your value as an architect to your society and future. That’s where you go to school. You can’t get it in a university, you can’t get it here, you can’t get it anywhere except as you love it, love the feeling of it, desire and pursue it. And it doesn’t come when you are very young, I think. I believe it comes faster with each experience, and the next is very simple, or more simple, until it becomes quite natural to you to become master of the idea you would express.
26. give me the luxuries of life and I will gladly do without the necessities.
27. The thing always happens that you really believe in; and the belief in a thing makes it happen
28. Building becomes architecture only when the mind of man consciously takes it and tries with all his resources to make it beautiful, to put concordance, sympathy with nature, and all that into it. Then you have architecture.
29. Early in life I had to choose between honest arrogance and hypocritical humility. I chose honest arrogance and have seen no occasion to change.
30. The measure of a man’s culture is the measure of his appreciation. We are ourselves what we appreciate and no more.
31. The heart is the chief feature of a functioning mind.
32. Man is a phase of nature, and only as he is related to nature does he matter, does he have any account whatever above the dust.
33. The best thing to do is go as far out as you can get… what you regard as ‘too far’–and when others follow, as they will, move on.
34. Art for art’s sake is a philosophy of the well-fed.
35. An architect’s most useful tools are an eraser at the drafting board and a wrecking ball at the site.
36. To me, young has no meaning. It’s something you can do nothing about, nothing at all. But youth is a quality. And if you have it, you never lose it.
37. The longer that I live the more beautiful life becomes.
38. Eventually, I think Chicago will be the most beautiful great city left in the world.
39. Early in life I had to choose between honest arrogance and hypocritical humility. I chose the former and have seen no reason to change.
40. How many understand that Nature is the essencial character of whatever is. It’s something you’ll find by looking not at, but in, always in. It’s always inside the thing, and it makes the outside. And some day, when you get sufficiently proficient in understanding the use of the term, you can tell by the outside pretty much from what’s inside.
[…] But everything that’s ever going to be of use to you in architecture or in life or anywhere you go or whatever you do is going to be Nature, in some of its immensely varied forms. So varied that there’s no end to the variety imaginable.
41. Philip Johnson is a highbrow. A highbrow is a man educated beyond his capacity. His house is a box of glass — not shelter. The meaning of the word shelter includes privacy.
42. We have no longer an outside and an inside as two separate things. Now the outside may come inside and the inside may and does go outside. They are of each other. Form and function thus become one in design and execution if the nature of materials and method and purpose are all in unison.
43The physician can bury his mistakes, but the architect can only advise his client to plant vines — so they should go as far as possible from home to build their first buildings.
44. Space is the breath of art.
45. Man in his upended street must know he is becoming a mere numerical item of convenience; on the way to being a thing. His inherent instinct for love and beauty is not only becoming suspect but, in spite of all intent, useless to society. He sees the human creature atrophy as he sees poverty of imagination in much “modern art,” so-called. But it was Walt Whitman himself who raised the perpendicular hand to declare: “It is provided in the essence of things that from any fruition of success no matter what, shall come forth something to make a greater struggle necessary.” This is what is now coming forth in our architecture as in our life.
46. The longer I live, the more beautiful life becomes.
47.A man is a fool if he drinks before he reaches the age of 50, and a fool if he doesn’t afterward.
48. An idea is inevitably a coordination. It is a coming together of something that is separate or disorganized or incomplete. With an idea you begin to feel into the nature of that incompleteness.
49. Noble life demands a noble architecture for noble uses of noble men.
Lack of culture means what it has always meant: ignoble civilization and therefore imminent downfall.
50. Life is truth…
51. What is needed most in architecture today is the very thing that is most needed in life- Integrity. Just as it is in a human being, so integrity is the deepest quality in a building…if we succeed, we will have done a great service to our moral nature- the psyche- of our democratic society…Stand up for integrity in your building and you stand for integrity not only in the life of those who did the building but socially a reciprocal relationship is inevitable.
52. The primitive ideals of centralization are now largely self-defeating. Human crucifixion by vertically on the now static checkerboard of the old city is pattern already in agony; yet for lack of any organic planing it is going on and on–not living, but rather hanging by its eyebrows from its nervous system.
53. The thing always happens that you really believe in and the belief in a thing makes it happen.
54. How is he made? Oftentimes bitter, sometimes sweet, seldom even wide-awake, architectural criticism of “the modern” wholly lacks inspiration or any qualification because it lacks the appreciation that is love: the flame essential to profound understanding. Only as criticism is the fruit of such experience will it ever be able truly to appraise anything. Else the spirit of true criteria is lacking. That spirit is love and love alone can understand. So art criticism is usually sour and superficial today because it would seem to know all about everything but understand nothing. Usually the public prints afford no more than a kind of irresponsible journalese wholly dependent upon some form of comparison, commercialization or pseudo-personal opinion made public. Critics may have minds of their own, but what chance have they to use them when experience in creating the art they write about is rarely theirs? So whatever they may happen to learn, and you learn from them, is very likely to put over on both of you as it was put over on them. Truth is seldom in the critic; and either good or bad, what comes from him is seldom his. Current criticism is something to take always on suspicion, if taken at all.
55. The mother art is architecture. Without an architecture of our own we have no soul of our own civilization.
56. Le génie est un péché contre la masse.
57. As we work along our various ways, there takes shape within us, in some sort, an ideal – something we are to become – some work to be done. This, I think, is denied to very few, and we begin really to live only when the thrill of this ideality moves us in what we will to accomplish.
58. The belief in a thing makes it happen.
59. The Machine is Intellect mastering the drudgery of the earth that the plastic art may live; that the margin of leisure and strength by which man’s life upon earth can be made beautiful, may immeasurably widen; its function ultimately to emancipate human expression!
60. The mission of an architect is to help people understand how to make life more beautiful, the world a better one for living in, and to give reason, rhyme, and meaning to life.