The Avery architectural and fine arts library

Columbia University
New York City, New York

The Avery Library contains three collections that together encompass by far the largest body of records relating to the work of Frank Lloyd Wright. Chief among these are the paper-based contents of the Frank Lloyd Wright Archives, obtained from the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation. This root source was added to two other collections already present at the Avery Library. Many of the architectural drawings found in these collections are recorded in the Geiger database.


Frank Lloyd Wright Archives

After John Geiger's death in 2011, the Frank Lloyd Wright Archives were acquired by a partnership between Columbia University and the Museum of Modern Art [MOMA], both institutions located in New York City, New York. The paper-based materials, including drawings and correspondence, as well as photographs, are housed at the Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library at Columbia [Avery Library]. Three dimensional objects such as architectural models are held at MOMA. As of September 16, 2013, on-site access to the collection was limited to project drawings, as an "incremental release" of materials. At this writing (2017), there is no on-line finding aid or other reference inventory to assist researchers. A brief description about the collection and access is provided by the Avery website.

Geiger integrated his research to a great extent with the contents of the Wright Archives. Many of his database entries recording the publication of Wright project drawings are tagged with Wright Archives inventory numbers. In addition, sometimes he attempted to reflect relationships with drawings not held by the Wright Archives by assigning speculative inventory numbers consistent with that system.

the Frank Lloyd Wright Architectural Drawings and Papers, circa 1880-1959

The Wright Archive joins an existing collection of approximately 1,000 project drawings that were already in a collection at the Avery. Geiger wanted this resource described and linked to his website. The Avery website describes the contents of this collection as:

"Approximately 1,000 architectural drawings, circa 1880-1959, with related correspondence, clippings, announcements, specifications, legal documents, and photographs. Major projects represented include Auldbrass Plantation, Yemasee, S.C; the Guggenheim Museum, New York City; Fallingwater (the Edgar J. Kaufmann residence), Bear Run, Pa.; and Wright's own home and studio in Oak Park, Ill. Also, Wright's correspondence relating to exhibits and publication of his work; other professional matters; and correspondence with his son, John Lloyd Wright, 1920s-1950s; manuscript, typescript, and printed versions of articles and addresses by Wright; photographs, programs, invitations, issues of SQUARE-PAPERS, and other materials, circa 1920s-1940s, relating to Taliesin; and miscellaneous invitations, programs, announcements, honors, appreciations, memorials, clippings, and other documents relating to various aspects of Wright's career."

Frank Lloyd Wright Miscellanea, circa 1905-1995 (bulk 1940s-1960s)

The Avery Library also holds a group of Wright materials composed of transcripts of speeches, interviews, magazine articles, and newspaper clippings.