Sometimes, after a long drive on the Merritt Parkway (as beautiful as it is), I find myself cross and edgy from all the traffic. I wonder why I do it. But after only ten minutes walking on the Glass House grounds, I am once again calm and centered, glad to have arrived again at this beautiful location where the buzz of insects is more significant than any passing vehicles. Lately, of course, the sounds of buzz saws have been prominent as New Canaan finishes the clean up after Hurricane Irene. Although some neighbors were without power for up to a week due to the many downed trees and wires, our property regained power after four days. We had a few trees damaged, but happily the Johnson/Whitney landscape plans and the constant vigilance of our groundskeeper ensured that no trees hit structures. We were very lucky, but between damage and a week of cancelled tours, our annual breakeven budget took a hit of over $20,000 which we hope our generous admirers will help us regain.
September disappeared in a blur, although it was notable in the introduction of our new Pure Glass House tour, which is proving to be very popular. Other highlights included a crush of Conversations in Context programs, including the always captivating Paul Goldberger, Tod Williams + Billie Tsien, and finally Gregg Paquarelli, Philip Nobel + Karen Stein. Actually, they were all captivating! Video from Paul Goldberger’s conversation has just been completed, with more coming soon.
October’s Conversations will be hosted by artist David Salle and architect Charles Renfro, beautifully reflecting the lives of David Whitney, curator and collector and Philip Johnson, architect and arbiter. Another of our Plein Air Afternoons will be offered this month as well, intended for artists, photographers, writers or others who crave some extra unstructured time on the property.
For all you leaf peepers, there are still some weekday tour tickets available in October. Personally I can hardly wait until the leaves begin to turn, changing this estate from a green oasis into a hot orange mecca—and by the way, changing Philip Johnson’s “expensive wallpaper” at the same time!
Interim Director, Philip Johnson Glass House