Opening the doors to a forgotten Philip Johnson masterpiece

New York Weekend Edition /
Mar.March 25, 2017 12:00 PM

Architect Philip Johnson is best known for the Seagram Building, 550 Madison Avenue, the Lipstick Building, and the David H. Koch Theater at Lincoln Center. But the legendary modernist also designed a much smaller structure in NYC: a small house at 252 East 52nd Street.

Built for Blanchette Rockefeller between 1949 and 1950, this small guest house is actually one of the best preserved of Philip Johnson’s works, according to T Magazine. The exterior remains virtually unchanged and the interiors still have all their period details, like the house’s original bar.

But the house’s most striking feature is perhaps a large pond that divides the two main-floor rooms.

“What’s most extraordinary is how little has been changed, from the house’s framing to the white vinyl tiles on the ground floor,” author Sadie Stein told T Magazine. “This is a space made to display art as generously as any gallery. And yet it’s a work of art in its own right.”

Here is a look inside.

[T Mag]


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