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The Farnsworth House was designed and constructed by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe between 1945 and 1951. It is a one-room weekend retreat in what then was a rural setting, located 55 miles (89 km) southwest of Chicago's downtown, on a 60-acre (24 ha) estate site adjoining the Fox River, south of the city of Plano, Illinois. The steel and glass house was commissioned by Edith Farnsworth, M.D., a prominent Chicago nephrologist, as a place where she could engage in her hobbies — playing the violin, translating poetry, and enjoying nature. Mies created a 1,500-square-foot (140 m2) structure that is widely recognized as an iconic masterpiece of International Style of architecture. The retreat was designated a National Historic Landmark in 2006, after being listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 2004. Currently, the house is owned and operated as a historic house museum by the historic preservation group, National Trust for Historic Preservation.
In celebration of the 2018 Illinois Bicentennial, the Farnsworth House was selected as one of the Illinois 200 Great Places by the American Institute of Architects Illinois component (AIA Illinois) and was recognized by USA Today Travel magazine, as one of AIA Illinois' selections for Illinois 25 Must See Places.