there’s a red house over yonder
that’s where my baby stays
there’s a red house over yonder, baby
that’s where my baby stays
well, i ain’t been home to see my baby,
in ninety nine and one half days…
in his interview with us this month, glenn lowry, director of the museum of modern art, talks about MoMA as a crucible where ideas of all kinds are melted down through the heat of artistic expression. he talks about art as the flame through which our cultural and societal ideologies come together to form a higher truth. and he’s not talking about some sort of alchemy either. in lowry’s house, patrons of all stripes are welcome, regardless of their command of the academics or some secret greater knowledge.
that’s what a home is, isn’t it? a place where all are welcome to explore, experiment, grow, spectate…argue…a home is the cauldron where our most earnest and tender moments are realized. in MoMA’s case, it’s also an intersection where memories (or imaginings) previously captured are on display, as well as where new memories and imaginings are captured. and the brainy fun house of mirrors continues infinitely from there. lowry’s home is about two years away from completing the renovation that includes a 50,000-sq-ft expansion, but it remains the hearth for modern and contemporary works that are stoking our cultural dialogue.
not far from MoMA, the whitney is closing its show, calder: hypermobility, this month. alexander calder was a crucible in his own right, forging together minimal design with maximum dynamism, form and color, drama and whimsy. he worked within the context of the modernists, but smashed through the paradigm by adding dimension and motion.
lowry and the calder show are subjects of our objectified and talking walls columns this month, penned by our mary gregory, who owns these segments each issue. mary’s choices for the subjects are not just timely, but thoroughly modern in a way that fits our annual design issue beautifully. they are also working touchstones for how art informs design and our most basic daily acts.
fall is casting her copper glow upon us, warning that soon our best moments will be restricted to the indoors. this issue is dedicated to making those interiors better, warmer, cozier, whatever, based on the ideas of those who execute these things best—artists, designers, dreamers.
the arc house, a bastion of modern design and the pride of architect maziar behrooz, is the pinnacle of these ideas as our house of the year. the home is not only visually shocking, it is exceptional in its smart, eco-conscience, state-of-the-art execution. the architecture “solved problems,” (see charles eames, alive and well, inside design, page 30) and the décor backs it up. it is not a home for everyone, although it is also a home anyone can appreciate.
the feature on this special dwelling is followed by a variety of stories that will spark the ideas, exploration and experimentation (and arguments) that any good home is known for. between this page and those, and some that follow them, our october issue is rich with ways for designing a lifestyle fit for any season.
…lord, have mercy, this key won’t unlock this door.*
* “red house,” jimi hendrix