Laurent House, Frank Lloyd Wright inspire Kortman exhibit

“Lurent House, Winter,” by Jeanne Ludeke. (Image provided)

Staff Report

The Laurent House, one of Frank Lloyd Wright’s architectural masterpieces, embraces the landscape along Spring Brook Road, right here in Rockford. It is the only building Wright designed to be totally handicapped accessible, and the only Wright house where the original owners still live in the home designed specifically for them.

In honor of this world-class property, the Kortman Gallery is presenting a group exhibition titled “The Wright Inspiration: Art, Design, and the Laurent House.” Sixteen Rockford artists will present works inspired by Frank Lloyd Wright in a variety of media, along with multi-media images of the house.

Mr. Wright is probably the most influential figure in architecture in modern times,” said Doc Slafkosky, Kortman Gallery director. “He is recognized around the world for his innovative and challenging designs … and to have one of his beautiful works here in Rockford is worth celebrating. Besides, he’s the only architect I know mentioned in a song!”

The Kortman exhibition will not only feature fine art, but functional design objects for the home such as pottery, lighting and even neckties.

This is more than an art show, you could almost say it’s a Frank Lloyd Wright/Laurent House experience,” said Slafkosky. “An entertaining holiday exhibition the entire family will enjoy seeing.”

Participating artists are Frank Houtkamp, Keith Grace, Brad Nordlof, Jim Julin, John Verl McNamara, Jeanne Ludeke, Valerie Olafson, Javier Jimenez, Steve Pitkin, Shari Grace, R. Scott Long, Jeremy Klonicki, Carmen Turner, Jennifer Mullin, Robert Sunday and Betsy Youngquist.

The exhibition is presented in cooperation with Mr. & Mrs. Kenneth H. Laurent, The Laurent House Foundation, The Community Foundation of Northern Illinois, The Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation, Engine Studio and Wallblank.

The opening reception for the exhibition will be from 5 to 10 p.m., Friday, Nov. 25. The gallery is upstairs at J.R. Kortman Center for Design, 107 N. Main St., Rockford. For more details, call (815) 968-0123 or visit

From the Nov. 23-29, 2011, issue

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