Richard Neutra's Windshield House

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In 1936, John Nicholas and Anne Brown commissioned Richard Neutra, the great Vienna-born architect, to design a summer house for them on Fishers Island, New York. Completed in 1938, Windshield (named for its large expanses of glass) was Neutra’s most significant residential building outside Los Angeles and the only one on the East Coast. A striking example of International Style architecture that featured many modern innovations, including two of R. Buckminster Fuller’s Dymaxion bathrooms, the house was severely damaged by a hurricane only weeks after its completion. The Browns rebuilt the house and continued to occupy it until 1959. The house was destroyed by fire in 1975. This engaging publication, written by prominent scholars of contemporary architecture and design, is the first to focus on the collaborative design process for Windshield, as revealed by the extensive Brown/Neutra correspondence, as well as on its role in modern American architecture. J. Carter Brown has contributed personal recollections about growing up in Windshield.

Author Biography: Dietrich Neumann is a professor in the department of the history of art and architecture at Brown University. Joyce Botelho is director of the John Nicholas Brown Center for the Study of American Civilization at Brown University. Thomas S. Hines is professor of history and architecture at UCLA. Thomas Michie is curator of decorative arts at the RISD Museum. J. Carter Brown is the former director of the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.

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Editorial Reviews

Jonathan Kirsch
An elegant monograph...documents and illustrates what editor Dietrich Neumann calls 'a watershed building in Neutra's career.
Los Angeles Times Book Review
Library Journal
This book, published in connection with an exhibit at Harvard's Arthur M. Sackler Museum and the Rhode Island School of Design Museum, is the story of Windshield House, the first house built on the East Coast by Richard Neutra. The architect was well known for his California houses and played a major role in architecture's modernist movement as early as the 1920s. Commissioned by John Nicholas and Anne Brown (of Providence's Brown University family), the house, named after its use of many large windows, was completed on Fishers Island, NY, in 1938. It was severely damaged by a hurricane only weeks after its completion, reconstructed, and destroyed by fire in 1973. The handsome book contains eight color and 100 black-and-white photographs and drawings. While the story of a house and the owner-architect collaboration that designed it may be too specialized for many libraries, this one is a surprisingly interesting one. Recommended for all architectural collections of strength. Jay Schafer, Univ. of Massachusetts, Amherst Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780300092035
  • Publisher: Yale University Press
  • Publication date: 10/28/2001
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 176
  • Product dimensions: 10.14 (w) x 11.36 (h) x 0.49 (d)

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