Friday, November 14, 2008

Robert AM Stern

Last night I had the pleasure of attending the 10th annual Vincent Scully prize for architects held at the Canadian Embassy. The recipient was one of my favorite architects, Robert A.M. Stern. He lectured and had a question and answer session that was fascinating.
Residence in Deal, NJ
Residence in Tidewater, Virginia
You probably all recognize his name from the numerous residential projects he has done regularly featured in Architectural digest, books under his name and many other prestigous publications. He is known for traditional design with a modern twist - best known by most of us reading this blog are his cottage style mansions and luxury old-style apartment buildings.
Residence in North York
One of the many reasons I admire him is something that he briefly spoke about: vernacular architecture and good design in many styles with an emphasis on continuity from our architectural past. You see this in his work and for this he is one of my favorite current architects. I believe any good designer can work in many styles. He also believes in building not just isolated buildings, but that each building is a piece of a larger place. He is a believer in background buildings. Each building that he does is meant to enhance the whole atmosphere of the place, not just be a 'nice' building on its own. Does this make sense?
You know I LOVE this one in Dallas, Texas called Preston Hollow
Cottage in Seaside, Florida
Robert A.M. Stern heads up a successful 300 person firm in NYC that he started in 1977 and also is the Dean of the Yale school of architecture. Last night he lectured about architectural education ( I won't bore you about that, but it was fascinating for any architect) and then had a great question and answer period.
Starwood residence
room in Edgewater ApartmentsResidence in South Hampton
One thing I found disappointing last night was that all the numerous presenters referred to him as Bob, which while probably his personal nickname is not his professional name and I felt was too casual and disrespectful for the occasion and for the award! Am I too old fashioned? I felt like the people who didn't refer to him as Mr. Stern or Robert were just showing off that they knew him well enough to refer to him by Bob. But I digress........Robert Stern, congratulations!residence in Edgartown
last two images and 1st one are residence in South Hampton, NY.
All pictures via his website


Toby Worthington said...

He's a national treasure, and the way in which he bridges classicism with modern is always interesting and subtle.He writes well too. (His introduction to the Pennoyer book on Delano and Aldrich is worth the price of it.)
But I agree, "Bob" is simply too familiar and informal.
"Maestro" would be more appropriate.

Katee "e-polishblog" said...

Great photos! I'd love to move into any of those homes.

Renee Finberg said...

sooooo gorgeous !

i love the ( room ) at the seaside cottage / fla fla

and the residence in ' north york ' .
i want to live there !

ArchitectDesign said...

Toby, I have that book and you're right, his writing is superb! He's a true scholar!
Katee, the photos come from his website - not sure if they have a photographer on staff or have a company they hire.
Renee, as 2 of my favorite funny ladies would say, they're all 'GORGE' -but I especially love that North York house porch with those turquoise shutters - beautiful! Any basically ANYTHING in seaside, florida!

Velvet and Linen said...

Robert Stern is an incredible talent.
His detailing is impeccable. I find it so impressive that he can run such a large firm without compromising the quality of his work.
Just beautiful!

Lynn Bigley said...

Enjoyed your praise for Robert A. M. Stern! Columbus, Indiana is proud to have Columbus Regional Hospital campus designed by him with a new addition in underway. Also enjoyed visiting his Nashville, TN Library recently.

Anonymous said...

Robert A. M. Stern has been chosen to design two new residential colleges at Yale, where he is dean of the School of Architecture. Like the university's existing twelve colleges, each will include a dormitory, dining room, library and master's house arranged around a gated quadrangle of lawn and trees. Mr. Stern is the unexcelled master of adapting traditional architectural forms to enhance particular contexts, and I can't wait to see what he proposes for my alma mater. I presume that one will be styled Oxfordian Gothic of ochre-colored granite, characteristic of the campus. But I have my fingers crossed that the other will somehow recreate the school's original lineup of Neoclassical Georgian buildings which once faced the New Haven Green. Known as the Old Brick Row, only Connecticut Hall, erected in 1752, survives today. But whatever Mr. Stern creates will be (as usual) beautiful, inspired, well-made and above vagaries of fashion.

John Martin Disque said...

The South Hampton Residence pictured above is absolutely breathtaking.

I agree that the word/name "Bob" should be reserved and used by permitted people such as close family if they and he so-wish.
I also agree that anyone thoughtlessly proceeding with this was simply trying to one-up anyone within earshot.
Mr. Stern deserves and should be shown more respect.

Milk and Honey Home said...

I was just reading about him in my new issue of Coastal Living. Great post!