More on the upcoming New Canaan Modern tours

Here is a link to a post on Ashlea Ebeling's blog, The Best Revenge, over at that expands quite a bit on the Sotheby International Realty's self-guided May is for Moderns house tour, and the New Canaan Historical Society's Modern House Day.

For the 8-house, self guided tour, call William Pitt Sotheby’s International Realty in New Canaan at 203-966-2633 to register. For the full-day Modern House Day Tour + Symposium, benefiting the New Canaan Historical society, (includes breakfast, lunch, 4-speaker symposium, guided house tours of 5 houses, and cocktail reception), call the Historical Society at 203 966-1776 for tickets. – GF

New Canaan Historical Society Modern House Day Tour + Symposium

Whew! That's a long title . . . Here's a short page to explain the 2011 MHD Tour + Symposium, "Seeing Modern".

The all day tour is Saturday, May 14. Call 203 966-1776 for tickets. – GF

(I haven't figured out how to link to a PDF – you may have to cut and paste the link)

Two Modern House Tours

Two tours in May will provide a chance to visit a dozen of New Canaan’s modern houses.
One tour, on May 1, is free, self-guided and is being offered by real estate agents looking to sell the seven houses on the tour.

The other, on May 14, costs $295, includes five houses, tour transportation and guides, lunch, a symposium and a cocktail party, and is being offered by the New Canaan Historical Society as a fundraiser for its programs.

We’re volunteering for the Historical Society tour, which is called "Seeing Modern,” and Gina Federico Graphic Design is a sponsor, so we’re biased towards it. Call 203 966-1776 for reservations, and click here for more information.

But we’re probably going the real estate tour, as well, and one way of looking at it is that for $295 you can see 12 fascinating houses over a two-week period. Information. Reservations for the May 1 can be made with William Pitt Sotheby’s International Realty in New Canaan at 203 966-2633. It’s probably on their website somewhere but I couldn’t find it easily, so here’s a news story about the event. – TA

Johansen's Pyramid House

John Johansen, the last of the Harvard Five architects, and his wife, Ati Gropius Johansen, sold their truly idiosyncratic Plastic Tent house in New York's Dutchess County and moved, about a year and a half ago, to Cape Cod.

I learned this this morning when I opened my New York Times and saw, on the bottom of page 1, "A Modernist Find: A search turned up a striking pyramid-shaped weekend retreat. Page D1" (When I started in the newspaper business, the short notice on page 1 that told you about a story on another page was called a "reefer," which always got a laugh from the pot smokers on the staff.) The Times writes:

The Plastic Tent, one of the so-called Symbolic Houses Mr. Johansen designed between the late 1950s and the 1970s, represented a departure from the modernism practiced by his colleagues. Drawing on the work of the psychoanalyst Carl Jung, he incorporated elements symbolizing the various stages of life – cave-like rooms, bridges, towers, trees – into these houses, taking his work in a new direction.

The Johansens, in their dotage, found that they were too isolated in rural Dutchess and sold it to two guys from Manhattan (it was listed at $365,000). The Times story and a slide show are here. – ta

Photos: Randy Harris for The New York Times

Wait! Don't sit down!!

I literally just walked back into the studio from baking a birthday cake for our daughter's 18th birthday, and I see this April Fools tweet from Fresh Home. Wish I'd gotten the recipe for the Barcelona Birthday Cake from them!

Now THIS is what @PJGlassHouse should be serving at their Dine in Design dinner! – GF

Many thanks to old friend Paul Rotello for finding a link to explain the origins of the confectionary couch. Here it is.