Glass House ‘Summer Party’ Set for June 8 [Q&A]

The Glass House’s celebrated annual fundraiser, The Summer Party, will be held 12 to 4 p.m. on Saturday, June 8. This year, attendees can explore the restored Brick House, in addition to the world-famous Glass House and other Philip Johnson structures on the 49-acre campus. We put some questions to Glass House Executive Director Kirsten Reoch ahead of the big party. Here’s our exchange. ***

New Canaanite: It’s a big year at The Glass House, the 75th anniversary as well as the long-awaited restoration and opening of the Brick House.

Holiday Shopping 2023: The Glass House Design Store

For this new installment of our local holiday shopping series, we visited  The Glass House Design Store at 199 Elm St. There, we spoke to Dominica Baharian, manager of the Design Store and the Visitor Center, and Christa Carr, communications director for The Glass House. Here’s a transcript of our conversation. ***

New Canaanite: Could you please give us an overview of the Design Store? What can people find here and how does it fit into The Glass House program?

‘What Makes New Canaan So Special’: NCM&HS Launches October4Design 2023 [Q&A]

The New Canaan Museum & Historical Society this month launches its fourth annual October4Design, a 10-day celebration of art, architecture and design in New Canaan that includes exhibitions, house tours, talks and other events at NCM&HS and participating local nonprofit organizations (here’s a calendar of events). On Tuesday, we met with Nancy Geary, executive director of NCM&HS, to talk about October4Design and what attendees can expect from this year’s Modern House Day Tour (tickets here). Here’s a transcription of our interview. ***

New Canaanite: Before we get into the specific events you have lined up for October4Design, tell me how it started and what it is generally. Nancy Geary: The Historical Society has been running the Modern House Day Tour to celebrate Midcentury-Modern architecture in New Canaan since 2001.

Meet Kirsten Reoch, the New Executive Director of The Glass House

One of New Canaan’s best-known nonprofits has a new leader at the helm. 

The ownership organization of The Glass House property on Ponus Ridge (visitors center, store and offices on Elm Street), the National Trust for Historic Preservation, launched its nationwide search for a new executive director after Greg Sages announced in March that he was stepping down. This month, Kirsten Reoch started in the role. We met up with her at Le Pain Quotidien on Monday morning. Here’s a transcript of our interview. ***

New Canaanite: Kirsten, welcome and congratulations. When did you start at The Glass House and where are you coming from? 

Kirsten Reoch: I started Monday, September 11th, and I was coming from working at the Park Avenue Armory in New York City for 25 years, directing the renovation and restoration of that landmark building for arts-related uses. I worked with the board, and I worked with the production team, I worked with the architects and conservators, and I think that that experience is what made me a good fit here at The Glass House. 

Tell me more about that.

Who Knew: The Best ‘Open House’ of the Year

‘Who Knew?’ is sponsored by Walter Stewart’s Market. “Week-end crowds have been blocking traffic on Ponus Ridge in this conservative old community of early colonial homes, with hundreds of residents turning out in holiday mood to inspect Philip C. Johnson’s all-glass house. While workmen put the finishing touches on the ‘private’ residence and the adjoining guest house, startled, uninvited visitors tramp about to view the results with mingled expressions of awe, wonder and indignation. They agree that nothing like it ever was seen in these parts.”

— The New York Times, December 1948

The first time I can recall hearing the words “New Canaan” was in an undergraduate survey class of modern architecture, in a hot, sleepy room lit only by images of Philip Johnson’s startlingly simple, rectilinear Glass House on a slide projector. I’d never seen a house so effectively magnify what was beautiful around it.