1. Philip Johnson, Rockefeller Guest House, New York, (1949-1950)

    One of the earliest examples of Mies van der Rohe’s brand of modernism in New York City is Philip Johnson’s Rockefeller Guest House. Designed for Blanchette Hooker Rockefeller, the house was praised at the time by critics for its simplicity and elegance. Ada Louise Huxtable described it as: "sophisticated … handsome, unconventional."

    The home was primarily intended as a place for social gatherings, and as a modern art gallery for its owner. Its design was based largely on Mies’ sketches for the IIT campus buildings as well as his drawings for unbuilt court houses. Designed at a time when Johnson was primarily designing private residences, the Guest House makes use not only of the architectural vocabulary that he favored at the time, but also of the proportions that he would use in future residences (like the Hodgenson House and the Oneto House, both of which have front doors and surrounding windows nearly identical to the façade and fenestration that Johnson used to enclose the small courtyard in the Rockefeller Guest House).

    In the late 1940’s and early 1950’s, Johnson had built only single-story structures, and thus when faced with the dilemma of how to design a façade with a second floor, he turns to Mies van der Rohe’s sketches, and places a second floor almost entirely of glass. The relationship between this design and that of the Wiley House is apparent, when one considers that both have a substantial first floor made of stone or brick (in this case red brick walls laid in a Flemish bond) with a second floor of glass, though the urban context of the Rockefeller Guest House limits the top floor to being just a one sided version of the all glass pavilion which sits atop the Wiley House. This division between floors also allows for the separation of public and private functions, something which Johnson no doubt picked up from Marcel Breuer during his time at Harvard. The second floor, which was meant to be a bedroom, has seldom if ever been photographed.

    The home is one room wide, and upon entering, the living room stretches far back until it is book-ended by floor to ceiling windows that closely mimic the façade’s layout. The living room space has white brick walls and features lighting fixtures designed by Mr. Johnson. Beyond the windows, there is a small courtyard that features a prime example of Philip Johnson’s concept of “safe danger”. In the courtyard, visitors must carefully walk on square travertine stepping-stones and avoid falling into the shallow reflecting pool on either side.

    The Rockefeller Guest House was donated by the Rockefellers to the Museum of Modern Art in 1955, after which it had its share of owners. Johnson himself rented the home and lived there from 1971 to 1979. The home was given landmark status by the Landmarks Preservation Commission in December 2000.

     
  1. meetash reblogged this from rudygodinez
  2. hardyalegria likes this
  3. ceruleanobsure likes this
  4. m-d-7 reblogged this from rudygodinez
  5. kurtstarcity likes this
  6. arquilatria likes this
  7. modernarchitectstudent reblogged this from rudygodinez and added:
    modernarchitectstudent
  8. modernarchitectstudent likes this
  9. askulina likes this
  10. blomfelt reblogged this from askulina
  11. kartaar likes this
  12. katabolizm reblogged this from rudygodinez and added:
    Philip Johnson, Rockefeller Guest House, New York, (1949-1950) One of the earliest examples of Mies van der Rohe’s brand...
  13. befoundwithyou reblogged this from velificantes
  14. trianguloaoquadrado reblogged this from rudygodinez
  15. yiznotes reblogged this from nickkahler
  16. gaylygossip reblogged this from s10041
  17. s10041 reblogged this from rudygodinez
  18. s10041 likes this
  19. letsdesignblog reblogged this from rudygodinez
  20. desixlb likes this
  21. piecesofmore reblogged this from piecesofmore
  22. xxmusic13luverxx likes this
  23. doctorharleenfrancesquinzel likes this
  24. wehsteros reblogged this from rudygodinez
  25. dazeebean likes this
  26. befoundwithyou likes this
  27. mpomy likes this
  28. kzrn reblogged this from velificantes
  29. velificantes reblogged this from rudygodinez
  30. velificantes likes this
  31. guesthousesindublin likes this
  32. theblogabouteverythingandnothing reblogged this from rudygodinez
  33. allthestarsinmyhead likes this
  34. luminoth545 reblogged this from theeversocool
  35. omcgowan reblogged this from nickkahler
  36. antiwhat likes this
  37. hi-ro9 reblogged this from neon4
  38. hi-ro9 likes this
  39. neon4 likes this
  40. neon4 reblogged this from architectmagazine
  41. architectmagazine reblogged this from rudygodinez
  42. covetingaremedy reblogged this from nickkahler
  43. yesmichaeluniverse likes this
  44. woniuke likes this
  45. topdevochki likes this
  46. gorisimo likes this
  47. draggedanddraped likes this
  48. bloomingbloom likes this
  49. astrophel-and-stella reblogged this from nickkahler
  50. traianselejan likes this