01 September, 2010

An Historical House Snoop...The Glass House.

A twist on a house snoop - an historical one [mid week house snoop will follow this posting!]... This just goes to show you that Form & Function can cohabitate within true if not pure design - one of the 'Havard Five's' Philip Johnson’s Glass House, located New Canaan, Connecticut, an hour northeast of Manhattan [The United States]. Enjoy - S x
Philip Johnson's Glass House
New Canaan, Connecticut, an hour northeast of Manhattan [USA]
In the years after World War II, when West Coast architects were building the famous Case Study houses—bold experiments in bringing modern design to the masses—another group of avant-garde architects was shaking up woodsy New Canaan, Connecticut, an hour northeast of Manhattan. Among them were Philip Johnson, Marcel Breuer, Landis Gores, John Johansen, and Eliot Noyes, all of them trained in Cambridge by the Bauhaus master Walter Gropius and quickly dubbed the Harvard Five. Their creations, the most famous of which is Philip Johnson’s Glass House, were at first considered “scandalous and shocking,” according to architect William D. Earls’s book, The Harvard Five. The 2006 imprint by W.W. Norton shows why, presenting the houses in crisp black-and-white photos from the 1940s through the ’60s. (Since then many have been preserved, but some have been torn down, and others have been altered beyond recognition.) The New Canaan Historical Society offers tours of the remaining houses and helps find sympathetic buyers when the iconic buildings, nearly all of them still in private hands, come on the market.

Philip Johnson, Glass House
Frank Lloyd Wright, himself the designer of a house in New Canaan, famously asked, “Do I take my hat off, or leave it on?” when entering Johnson’s transparent enclosure. Over the years, Johnson outfitted the 47-acre property with more than a dozen other structures, some of them important works in their own right. He left the estate to the National Trust for Historic Preservation, which offers tours while raising funds to preserve the still-startling building; philipjohnsonglasshouse.org. Photo Credit: Bill Maris/Esto

Sub Text & Images via Elle Decor.com

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