About Herb Greene

Photo: Robert Alan Bowlby

Herb Greene studied architecture under the direction of Bruce Goff (1904–1982), one of the nation’s most original architects and influential architectural educators. During and after school, Greene worked for Goff preparing numerous presentation drawings, which are now part of the Art Institute of Chicago’s collection. Greene also worked for architect John Lautner (1911–1994), who was one of Frank Lloyd Wright’s original apprentices. Following the retirement of Goff in 1957, Greene taught architecture at the University of Oklahoma for six years in order to continue his teacher’s legacy. During this period, Greene also designed and built houses of significant historic interest before moving to Lexington, Kentucky, where he continued to work and teach for eighteen years.

In 1961, Greene designed and built his Prairie House in Norman, Oklahoma. The idiosyncratic and innovative architecture of Greene’s Prairie House caused an international sensation and was published in Life and Look magazines, Progressive Architecture (St. Martin’s Press), and numerous journals throughout Europe and Japan. Greene’s residential work, following Goff’s architectural philosophy, is an expression of the client’s existential qualities (personality and physiognomy), as well as conditions related to site, region, and the nature of materials. In addition to architectural work, Greene makes collage paintings as an exploration of existential philosophy and the power of images on the human psyche.

After his retirement from teaching in 1982, Greene moved to Berkeley, California where he continues to write, paint, and promote his concept for building with artists. In 1981, Greene published the book Building to Last: Architecture as Ongoing Art (Architectural Book Publishing, 1981), which advocates incorporating the work of artists and crafts people into architecture in order to increase perceptual richness and history in an architectural form. Greene’s architectural drawings are in The Art Institute of Chicago’s collection alongside works by Louis Sullivan, Frank Lloyd Wright, Bruce Goff, and other works in the “Prairie Tradition.” Greene’s collage paintings are also in The Art Institute of Chicago’s collection, as well as numerous private collections across the United States. Greene’s writing has been widely published, including his books Mind & Image (The University Press of Kentucky, 1976), Painting the Mental Continuum: Perception and Meaning in the Making (Berkeley Hills Books, 2003), and  Generations: Six Decades of Collage Art and Architecture Generated with Perspectives from Science (Oro Editions, 2015).


1953   B.Arch., University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK


1964-82   Professor of Architecture, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY

1965-70   Junior Architect, C.A. Coleman, Lexington, KY

1957-63   Assistant Professor of Architecture, University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK

1954-57   Associate Architect, Joseph Krakower, Houston, TX

1950-53   Associate Architect, Bruce Goff, Norman, OK

1950-51   Associate Architect, John Lautner, Los Angeles, CA


1981-1983   Villa Blanca Farm, Lexington, KY

1977   Cook Residence, Louisville, KY

1968   Furches House, Murray, KY

1968   Lovaas Residence, Lexington, KY

1966   French Residence, Versailles, KY

1965   Unitarian Church, Lexington, KY

1962   Cunningham Residence, Oklahoma City, OK

1960-1961   The Prairie House, Norman, OK

1959   Joyce Residence, Snyder, OK

1957   Lyne Residence, Houston , TX

1954   Southwest Bell Offices, Houston, TX


2020   Herb Greene: Existential Generation, MAINSITE Contemporary Art, Norman, OK

2020   Painting the Continuous Present: Bruce Goff & Herb Greene, Price Tower Arts Center, Bartlesville, OK

2020   Renegades: Bruce Goff and the American School of Architecture, Fred Jones Jr. Museum   of Art, University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK

2018   Renegades: Bruce Goff and the American School of Architecture at Bizzell, University of Oklahoma, Bizzell Memorial Library, Norman, OK

2003   Herb Greene, A Solo Exhibition, Toki Gallery, Berkeley, CA

2000   The Organic Tradition, Chicago, IL

1991   The Continuous Present of Organic Architecture, Contemporary Arts Center, Cincinnati, OH

1977   Herb Greene, Florence Duhl Gallery, New York, NY

1975   Herb Greene, Living Arts and Science Center, Lexington, KY

1974   Herb Greene, University of Kentucky, Fine Arts Gallery, Lexington, KY

1973   Prairie Architecture, Milwaukee Art Center, Milwaukee, WI

1970   Herb Greene, Phoenix Gallery, New York, NY

1967   Environmental Architecture, Kansas City Art Institute, Kansas City, MO

1966   United States Information Agency, International traveling exhibition University of Arkansas, Fine Arts Gallery, Fayetteville, AR

1965   Illinois Biennial, Krannert Art Museum, Champaign, IL

1965   Modern Architecture USA, Museum of Modern Art, Graham Foundation, New York, NY


Anna Berger and Thad Kusmierski , Private Collection

Bart Prince, Private Collection

The Chicago Institute of Art, Permanent Collection, Chicago, IL

Fogg Museum, Collection of Significant Architecture, Harvard, Cambridge, MA

Gloria and Dennis Robinson, Private Collection

Jerri Bunebrake, Private Collection

Jim Gresham, Private Collection

Robert A. Bowlby, Private Collection

Tom Greenberg, Private Collection

William Murphy, Private Collection


Generations: Six Decades of Collage Art and Architecture, Generated with Perspectives from Science, Oro Editions, 2015

Painting the Mental Continuum: Perception and Meaning in the Making, Berkeley Hills Books, 2003

Building to Last, Architecture as Ongoing Art, Architectural Book Publishing Company, 1981

Mind and Image: An Essay on Art and Architecture, The University Press of Kentucky, 1976


1975   NEA Grant: Armatures/Urban Studies

1971   University of Kentucky Research Foundation Grant: Experiments with polyurethane foam

1966   University of Kentucky Research Foundation Grant: Painting combined with photography


2022  Monterey Design Conference, Monterey CA

2019  American School Symposium, University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK

2017   Creating_Making the Prairie House, University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK

2010   Taliesin East, Art and Architecture of Herb Greene, Spring Green, WI

2002   University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK

2000   University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY

1982   San Francisco Center for Architecture and Urbanism, San Francisco, CA

1981   University of Cincinnati School of Architecture, Cincinnati, OH

1981   Wisconsin Society of Architects, 50th Annual Convention, Madison, WI

1980   Washington University, St. Louis, MO

1980  Organic Architecture and Energy Conference, Phoenix, AZ

1979   Louisiana Technical University, Graduate Student Studio, Ruston, LA

1979   United Kingdom Architecture Association, London, England

1979   Kingston Polytechnic University, South West London, England

1979   Oxford University, Oxford, England

1979   Mackintosh School of Architecture, Glasgow, Scotland

1979   Cambridge University, Cambridge, England

1979   University of California, Berkeley, CA

1979   California Polytechnic University, San Luis Obispo, CA

1979   Miami University, Oxford, OH

1978   Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA

1967   Indiana A.I.A., Indianapolis, IN

1967   Kansas State University, Manhattan, KS

1967   Milwaukee Art Center, Milwaukee, WI

1966   Mississippi A.I.A., Jackson, MS

1964   University of Indiana, Midwest Art Conference, Indianapolis, IN

1963   Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture, Albuquerque, NM