Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Hyde Residence Fireplace by Architect, Bruce Goff - Bonus Photo of the Week

Name: Hyde Residence
Architect: Bruce Goff
Year Designed: 1964
Builder: Michael Rothstein Construction
Year Built: 1965
Size: 3400 sq. ft. 5 bedroom 3 ½ bath
Location: Prairie Village, Kansas
Type: Residential
Style: Organic Modern
Status: Very Good
Photographer: Robert McLaughlin

The ten foot by ten foot central skylight over the brick hearth is penetrated by the fireplace chimney, which has a purple mirrored triangular wall behind. Strips of “cellophane rain” hang from the skylight, creating a magic play of light on carpet and walls. With a fire burning, you understand the concept of Earth, Fire and Water. Many people know the house from the use of green dime store ashtrays used as stained glass elements in the doors and railing.

Castilian by Architects, Jones and Emmons - Modern Photo of the Week

Name: Castilian
Architect: Jones and Emmons ( A. Quincy Jones)
Year Designed: 1956
Builder: Don Drummond
Year Built: circa 1956-57
Size: Unknown sq.ft. 3 or 4 bedroom variations with 2 baths
Location: Prairie Village, Kansas
Type: Residential
Style: Modern Atomic Ranch
Status: Excellent
Photographer: Robert McLaughlin

We will be posting a lot more about the design of this home a little later.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Snower Residence by Architect, Marcel Breuer - Photo(s) of the Week

Name: Snower Residence
Architect: Marcel Breuer
Year Designed: 1954
Builder: Unknown
Year Built: 1955
Size: Unknown sq. ft. 3 bedroom 2 bath
Location: Mission Hills, Kansas
Type: Residence
Style: International Style
Status: Endangered due to the value of the lot in Kansas City's most affluent neighborhood
Photographer: Robert McLaughlin

Description: This residence was built by its current owner who commissioned Breuer to design it for them in 1954. The owners have painstakingly maintained the original interiors as designed by the architect. The exteriors also remain exactly as they were originally planned. The house was designed as a long and narrow box, housing the living and bedroom spaces, built on a masonry base containing the garage and a family room. Large cantilevers at both ends dominate the design much like Breuer's own house built in 1947, in New Canaan, Connecticut. This may be one of only two Breuer House built West of the Mississippi. It is likely one of the most original Breuer Houses standing today.

I had to dig around my hard drive to find these photos taken with my first digital camera back in April of 2004. They are more candid snapshots than architectural photography but they give you a taste of the exterior and interior of the house.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Before You Buy a House by John Hancock Callender

Back in 2004, co-blogger Scott and I went to California to visit with Don Drummond at his home in Carmel, California. After an entire day of chatting about his years building Modern homes in Kansas City, he began to look for some old magazines and books about his projects in KC. He took us to a hall closet, which had some of his wife's books on design and there was this book with the Revere Homes from Prairie Village, KS on the cover. It was called, Before You Buy a House, by John Hancock Callender. My heart skipped a beat with excitement when I saw it. Seeing my enthusiasm, Don offered to give me the book. I resisted the tempting offer, suggesting that he give it to one of his children or grandchildren instead. I did except his offer on another fabulous book, but that is a story for another day. Ironically, I found the same book on the shelf of Stephen Ritchings, another Mid-Century Modern enthusiast and friend in California later that same weekend. Making note of the title, I immediately ordered a couple copies of this rare title from used book sellers upon my arrival back home.

This has proven to be one my favorite titles in my extensive vintage architecture book collection. It has early 1950's homes by many of the great house designers and builders of the time. Most notably. there is extensive coverage of the early Eichler homes by Anshen and Allen and Jones and Emmons in California. Also of note are homes in Hollin Hills, Alexandria, VA by Architect, Charles M. Goodman and Builder, Robert C. Davenport. Closer to home, there are projects in Arapahoe Acres, Denver, CO by Architect, Eugene R. Sternberg and Builder, Edward B. Hawkins.

The book is titled Before You Buy a House: How to Judge, How to Value, How to Decide by John Hancock Callender and authorized by the Architectural League of New York and the Southwest Research Institute. Published by Crown Publishing, New York in 1953.
160 pages, 34 Houses and developments, 211 black-and-white photographs, drawings, and plans, and an Evaluation Checklist prepared by The Housing Research Foundation.

Because some of these homes will be on the upcoming KCMODERN Runnells Modern House Tour I thought I would share this book with you. Here are the pages from the book pertaining to the Revere Home by Architect, David B. Runnells and Builder, Donald H. Drummond.