Building a Forward-thinking Digital Home to Honor a Visionary’s Legacy
A look at how we helped bring to life a robust website rooted in the legendary architect’s design principles for the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation.
Designing a new website for the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation is an intimidating prospect. How do you create a digital home whose scope must not only entail the life and work of the 20th century’s most celebrated architect but also the vitality of his legacy and its relevance to contemporary life, art and culture? Casual Astronaut was entrusted with this challenge — and unsurprisingly, we found the answers to our questions and inspiration in Wright and his work.
The resulting site, built on user-friendly WordPress, reflects Wright’s design philosophies in both its aesthetic and its clear, easy navigation — nothing is superfluous, everything is intentional. To complement the site, we also created content-fueled digital marketing campaigns focused on drawing visitors to Wright’s landmark Taliesin West, as well as a digital kiosk to further immerse visitors in Wright’s visionary genius.
Knowing that the site would serve as a destination for diverse audience segments (researchers, architects, fans and potential visitors), we plotted out our desired user experiences for each target to clearly define navigation and the way information would be served up on the site. These paths formed the backbone for the site’s architecture, resulting in an easy-to-use site that nimbly guides users toward the content they want to discover and transactions they’re looking to make.
Just as Wright embraced simplicity, the Foundation’s new website embraces this maxim with a clean, white canvas that allows his vision to shine as the focus. Lavish photography of the architect’s work is given room to breathe, and visitors to the site are given the space in which to contemplate his life and legacy. Sparing use of Wright’s signature red draws attention and entices users to click, while subtle uses of sky blue and prairie-field greens evoke Wright’s love of nature. And the geometric shapes that inspired and grounded so much of the architect’s work punctuate headlines and other key elements.
The site’s components and pages can be mixed and matched based on changing needs, and a new content hub, The Whirling Arrow, serves as an online resource offering news and in-depth information that underscore the relevance of Wright’s legacy to how we live today.
Results nine months post-launch
Our work didn’t end when the site went live. Currently, C/A continues to manage digital advertising campaigns across a variety of channels — geofencing, social media, paid search, display and native — to drive visits to Taliesin West. These seasonal campaigns leverage captivating images of the property and design elements culled from the website, and drive prospective visitors to landing pages where they can purchase tickets to tour Wright’s winter home. All efforts have detailed tracking in place, allowing our team to optimize the campaigns and focus the media budget on the channels that truly convert.
Taliesin West makes for an extremely photogenic subject, and it would be fair to assume that stunning photos of such a stunning structure and landscape would be enough to convince visitors to schedule a tour. But just as our web design work for the Foundation was completed with people in mind, our photography strategy needed to focus on that human element, as well. Visitors needed to see the Taliesin West experience as just that — an experience. And one they could very much be a part of.