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SC Johnson Headquarters, Racine

(190+ reviews on the web)
Architectural Building Tourist Spot
Johnson Wax Headquarters is the world headquarters and administration building of S. C. Johnson & Son in Racine, Wisconsin. Designed by American architect Frank Lloyd Wright for the company's president, Herbert F. "Hib" Johnson, the building was constructed from 1936 to 1939. Also known as the Johnson Wax Administration Building, it and the nearby 14-story Johnson Wax Research Tower (built 1944–1950) were designated as a National Historic Landmark in 1976 as Administration Building and Research Tower, S.C. Johnson and Son.DesignThe Johnson Wax Headquarters were set in an industrial zone and Wright decided to create a sealed environment lit from above, as he had done with the Larkin Administration Building. The building features Wright's interpretation of the streamlined Art Moderne style popular in the 1930s. In a break with Wright's earlier Prairie School structures, the building features many curvilinear forms and subsequently required over 200 different curved "Cherokee red" bricks to create the sweeping curves of the interior and exterior. The mortar between the bricks is raked in traditional Wright-style to accentuate the horizontality of the building. The warm, reddish hue of the bricks was used in the polished concrete floor slab as well; the white stone trim and white dendriform columns create a subtle yet striking contrast. All of the furniture, manufactured by Steelcase, was designed for the building by Wright and it mirrored many of the building's unique design features.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • Very nice tour. If you are wheelchair user, there is one part of the tour you won't get to see. It doesn't have an elevator. Otherwise, even if you are in a wheelchair, this is a great attraction. It'...  more »
  • We have a new appreciation for the S.C. Johnson company after taking this FREE tour. The tour guide was excellent and we were permitted to see a lot of Frank Lloyd Wright's imprint in the architecture...  more »
  • Frank Lloyd Wright designed two major buildings on the campus of the Johnson Wax headquarters. The free tour of these structures provides insight into Wright's design philosophy, his long-time associa...  more »