I SPY: A Fish Tank

Sep 30, 2014

What did National Geographic call a 'Must see in THE WORLD'?  The Philip Johnson Glass House.  I now understand why!  You will soon agree too!

In 1949 Philip Johnson a famous American Architect built his private weekend retreat in New Canaan, CT.  A glass house set in 49 acres of beautiful nature.  As the Artist once said 'It works because the wallpaper is so handsome".  He sure is right!  It's a perfect backdrop.

Till the end of November 2014 they're hosting an exhibition by a Japanese artist Fujiko Nakaya called 'Veil". Thick fog is released at set times around the glass house that creates a very MYSTICAL and totally unique experience.  I was lucky to be outside as the fog began to be released and then was inside the glass house while the fog covered the entire house and obscured your view looking out.  Cool right?

This PHENOMENAL minimalist structure is a National Historical Landmark.  The glass house is the apple of the eye on the property, but there are also other interesting structures built surrounding it.  It's an amazing portrayal of Modern architecture, with influences I noticed from Bauhaus, Cubism, and Frank Geary, that carries into the interior.

I suggest you take a guided walking tour of the grounds to understand the strategic placement and landscape of this property, otherwise things may seem odd at first.  But once told the analogy behind Philip Johnson's thinking you will understand how well thought out this project was.  Quite GENIUS.  The windows, placement of buildings, trees planted to mimic the window numbers, to the stone walls built to distract your eye and subconsciously allure you to look the other way at the view makes you realize everything was done for a reason.  Was Mr Johnson a control freak?  I think so!

He was also obsessed with circles and rectangles.  You will see the on going theme through out the property, such as the circular pool built across from the rectangular glass house, and the circular port windows at the back of the brick house.  This stark contrast is also noticeable within the interior.  It's a formula that works. Similar to the principles of Feng Shui that circles balance out the elements so the energy flows better and doesn't get stuck in the 90 degree angle corners of a rectangle.  Many structures were built for the design effect more so then practicality.  In his video he said 'The human body can conform.  If you like a beautiful chair, you will find a way to sit in it'.  TRUE!

Here are the other sites on the property that are of interest and had meaning.

Brick Guest House:

Da Monsta:

Ghost House:

Painting Gallery:

The Facade of the artist studio 'Under Earth' - 42 works of Art from Philip Johnson private collection.
Artist: Frank Stella

Artist: Andy Warhol  - Commissioned portrait of Philip Johnson

Sculpture Gallery:


Anything in particular catch your interest?  Could you live in a fish tank?  I could if it was similar to the Philip Johnson Glass House! I wish they would put this house up for rent on Airbnb.  How awesome would that be to be able to stay here for a weekend?  Would be such a TREAT.

The Glass House
199 Elm Street
New Canaan, CT 06840
T: 1866. 811. 4111

No comments

Post a Comment

i * SPY CANDY. All rights reserved. © Maira Gall.