making pj pomo, before he himself was

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The plan above is a direct take on Philip Johnson’s Hodgson House of 1951, at New Canaan, CT.  The original is of the same mid-century modernist vein as his own storied Glass House of 1949, also in New Canaan.  My version keeps the same U-shaped floor plan, but filled out to take up an entire square, and replaces the focal fireplace wall with a half-round bay.  Most dramatically, though, the entire exterior is rendered in brick, including the window openings, which in Johnson’s were a black steel and glass system, no doubt in deep homage to Mies’ contemporary work at IIT, Chicago.  A shallow shingled roof completes the traditional restylization, and makes the whole more reminiscent of the earlier Chicago traditions of Richardson & Burnham.

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mid century modernism goes traditional

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Having begun my architectural education in Southern California, Mid-Century Modernism (and especially Richard Neutra*) has always held a place of honor in my personal canon – MadMen be damned.  Among the Eastern variants of that style, the Harvard Five are most likely the most influential.

Today’s work is a variation on Eliot Noyes’ own home at New Canaan, CT.  Effectively, I’ve taken the iconic low-slung, masonry-clad, flat-roofed house and swapped its stylistic elements for more traditional, vernacular ones: an arched entry opens to a colonnaded patio; hip roofs with exposed trusswork sit over the living rooms and bedrooms; and double glass doors replace the sliding panels that so often fail.  A brick variation is below, with jack arches in place of the wood trabeation found above.

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*Growing up around his buildings at the Crystal Cathedral didn’t hurt either. . .