Beyond the Glass House
Beyond the Glass House: New Canaan Mid-Century Modern Houses 1947-1979
a+u – Architecture & Urbanism – is a magazine in Japanese and English that provides information on architecture around the globe to a global readership. A recent issue of the magazine examined fourteen Mid-Century Modern houses in New Canaan, designed by nine architects between the years 1947-1979. Join guest editor and architect Alan Goldberg and photographer Michael Biondo for a conversation with writer Gwen North Reiss about the New Canaan houses featured in the magazine, the making of the monograph, the related international competition, “Living in the Future,” and exhibitions at the Center for Architecture Sarasota and the Yale School of Architecture Main Gallery.
Please note: this event takes place at New Canaan Library. Please kindly register for this program here. The lecture will begin at 6:30pm, preceded by a reception beginning at 6:00pm.
Alan Goldberg began his career in New York working on a number of important buildings for a firm that adhered to Beaux-Arts style principals. By an unexpected occurrence he found himself on a team formed by Mies van der Rohe and Philip Johnson to design the Seagram’s Building, considered one of the great icons in 20th century architecture. The experience heightened Goldberg’s interest in the Bauhaus Movement, which he studied in college, and helped shape his thoughts on architecture. Goldberg, in 1966, moved to New Canaan, Connecticut to join Eliot Noyes & Associates, one of the nations most respected design firms. In 1974, he became a partner, and three years later, after Noyes died, the sole principal under the firm’s new name AG/ENA. During his 50 years with the firm Goldberg designed and managed a diverse number of projects for some of the nation’s leading corporations and public agencies. Goldberg embraced design in the broadest sense, including architecture, corporate design consulting, industrial design, interiors, and graphics. He became an integral part of New Canaan’s mid-century modern movement, and has raised public awareness and the need to preserve its heritage.
Michael Biondo is an architectural photographer whose work has appeared in The Wall Street Journal, Architectural Digest, Architizer, Dwell, and other publications. In addition to shooting 14 New Canaan houses for the May 2019 issue of a+u, he has done special photography projects for the Glass House, the National Trust, and numerous publishers and websites. He is co-author and photographer of Mid-Century Houses Today, which celebrates New Canaan’s Modern houses and was published in 2015 by Monacelli Press. A Wilton resident with a lifelong interest in art and design, Michael grew up in New Canaan and Darien and earned his BFA from the Pratt Institute. He began his career in fashion photography, dividing his time between New York, Los Angeles, and Paris, and returned to Fairfield County in 2006. He currently serves as a Board Member for the Carriage Barn Arts Center.
Gwen North Reiss is a writer and poet whose articles on modern architecture for the New York Times, Connecticut Cottages & Gardens, Preservation Magazine, and other publications appeared during the early years of preservation efforts in New Canaan. At the Glass House, she has conducted interviews for the Oral History Project and the Conversations series and is part of the Education team. A Yale College graduate with a degree in Literature, Reiss has published poetry in literary magazines and is the author of a chapbook, “Notes on Metals” as well as “Paper Aperture,” a group of poems published by Pen and Brush in New York. As a consultant specializing in communications and architectural history, she has also worked with Silvermine Arts Center and Grace Farms Foundation.
Glass House Presents at New Canaan Library is an occasional series of talks and events about architecture, design, and Modernism in New Canaan and beyond. The series is collaboratively organized by the Glass House and the Library.
This program is generously supported by the New Canaan Community Foundation.