Glass House Gift Shopping.

OMG, yes. (Photos by C-M.)

I finally made it to Philip Johnson’s Glass House in New Canaan, Conn., to investigate one of modernism’s more revealing architectural marvels. Ordinarily, I’d be posting all kinds of great pictures from my visit. Except that my visit wasn’t so great, because there was conservation work going on — meaning that half the house was covered in plastic tarps. This woulda been nice to know before we plunked down $90 (plus $2.50 for parking) to go see the damn thing.

Thankfully, I made up for the aggravation by defiling a badly-made Donald Judd sculpture with frivolity and then hitting the gift shop, where I discovered the above treasure: Philip Johnson-esque eyewear, described in the adjacent marketing material as “upscale fashion forward reading glasses.” Otherwise known as the kind of lookers worn by Harry Potter.

Eyeglass prices started at $125. (Seriously.) You can find the old coot in his signature specs here. See photos of our eyeglass fashion shoot after the jump.

Me, all cross-eyed, from having to hear all about “the architecture of negative space,” which in Johnson’s case was really a very nice way of saying “deforestation.”

He’s thinking about voids. For reals.

Find more pictures from our visit on Flickr.


  1. oh well

    Now for a rant that hasn’t got anything to do with your post:

    I have to say I’ve never liked the Glass House at all. I mean, even calling it “modernist” seems a bit of a stretch or more like total BS (looking from Europe, at least). The constructivists or the Bauhaus people or Le Corbusier wouldn’t have any of this stupid affectation in the new city… not to talk about the actual place the house is in.

    I dunno, I’m pretty frustrated at the reactionary attitudes behind mainstream “architecture by architects”, which seems to draw heavily on the modernists, but turns them into some sort of either moral or visual set of rules. I mean, you will never catch an architect reading the surrealists but they talk all sorts of bollocks about what “modern architecture” meant.