Home Spotlight: Amazing Art-Filled A. Quincy Jones in Stanford, CA and more


Home Spotlight: Amazing Art-Filled A. Quincy Jones in Stanford, CA

The design for the Matt and Lyda Kahn House was a collaboration in 1959 between A. Quincy Jones and Joseph Eichler, but that’s not the only reason we adore it. Besides its pedigree, the home’s interiors were designed by its owner – Stanford art professor Matt Kahn – whose jaw-dropping collection of art and artifacts cover every square inch of the space.

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Although we usually go with a “less is more” attitude when it comes to interior design, this gorgeous house and its incredible collection are the obvious exception. Kahn lived in the house for over 50 years until his recent passing, at which point it was sold to another Stanford faculty member with most of the collection intact.

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Exploring the Craft of Pressing Fiberglass with Mid-Century Machines

The mid-20th century was a great time for the manufacturing industry. Advancements in machine technology and plastics created opportunities for production that had previously only been dreamed of. Compared with the robotic machinery of today, however, mid-century machines required a great deal of hands-on activity.

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Take the Modernica Fiberglass Chair Factory for instance. These machines were originally developed by Zenith Plastics in 1949. Although the fiberglass molds and presses allow for a more streamlined production process, the decades-old machinery requires a lot hands-on assistance, and can only produce two chairs at a time. The result is an incredibly authentic product with slight variations in texture and color.

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Here’s a closer look at the process. Note how our technicians are involved in every step of the process, treating each chair as a project of its own.

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Inspire Me Monday: Ricky and Lucy’s Palm Springs Paradise

Almost every tourist (and more than a few residents) of the Los Angeles area have driven by the house that Desi Arnaz and Lucille Ball owned in Beverly Hills. Somewhat less accessible is the gorgeous home that Paul R. Williams designed for the couple in Palm Springs in 1954.

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Although the expansive 4,400 sq ft home has been changed extensively over the years, we love to see it as it was when Lucy and Desi lived there.

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Photos by Julius Shulman.

 

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Upcoming Events: Modern Home Tours

There are lots of great Modern Home Tours coming up within the next few months; take a look and catch one near you!

2015 Denver Modern Home Tour: August 22 @ 11:00 am5:00 pm

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2015 LA Beach Cities Modern Home Tour: September 12 @ 11:00 am5:00 pm

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Vancouver Modern Home Tour: September 19 @ 11:00 am5:00 pm

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2015 Houston Modern Home Tour: September 26 @ 11:00 am5:00 pm

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See more home tours on the Modernica Blog, or get blog updates so you never miss a post!

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Masters of Mid-Century Ceramics: Maija Grotell

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Photo courtesy of Plum Tree Pottery.

Maija Grotell studied ceramics in Helsinki before migrating to New York in 1927. The ceramicist taught at various schools and entered her work in small shows and exhibitions over the next 10 years, slowly becoming more recognized for her impeccable ceramics work. Her big break came along when Eliel Saarinen invited her to become head of the ceramics department at the Cranbrook Academy of Art.

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Maija Grotell and Nelly Beveridge at work in the Cranbrook Academy of Art, 1940. Photo courtesy of the Cranbrook Archives.

Cranbrook is considered by many to be epicenter of the early 20th century modernist movement. Grotell taught there for 30 years, during which time she worked with sculptor Carl Milles, designer Eero Saarinen, and many other prominent figures in the world of art and architecture. Some of her finest work was accomplished during this time. Besides her many, many ceramic works, she also helped Eero Saarinen develop the brilliantly-colored brick glazes that are still present on the walls of the 1965 General Motors Technical Center.

She continued to influence the practice of mid-century ceramics until she retired in 1966. Today, her works are prized and represented in the permanent collections of museums across the world.

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General Motors Technical Center with glazed brick walls – Warren, Michigan, 1965. Photo courtesy of Curbed.

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Glazed stoneware, 1940. Photo courtesy of the Met Museum.

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Painted vase, 1940s.  Photo courtesy of Worthpoint.

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Vase, 1940s. Photo courtesy of Charlotte Lindley Martin Ceramics.

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Vase in mottled glaze, 1950s. Photos courtesy of Worthpoint.

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Vase, 1952. Photo by Jack Ramsdale.

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Glazed stoneware vase, 1950s. Photo courtesy of Live Auctioneer.

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Glazed Ceramics, 1950s. Photo courtesy of the Jordan Schnitzer Museum.

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Glazed stoneware, 1950. Photo courtesy of the Moderne Gallery.

Find more historical posts on the Modernica blog, or sign up to receive blog updates so you never miss a post!

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