The house on the bottom row, second from the left, is designed by Carlo Santambrogio, and is located in Milan.
It's a concept house--nearly everything in it, except the bed, is made of glass. It's theoretically livable, though--the exterior walls are thick, and sealed, and it can be heated.
I'm thinking about two things: first, the idea, one that I can't place definitively (a visiting scholar years ago when I was a grad student at the U talked about it, I think), that in the psychodrama of human existence, a common trope is that of mistaking a threat for a shelter. And second, the idea of art and art spaces as being shelters, temporary, that substitute in the moment for the shelter we need. Which, of course, is never quite available.
A third thing: Frost, writing in "Directive," about a lost home:
Back out of all this now too much for us,And a fourth thing: this discussion of how Philip Johnson and his companion David Whitney actually lived in the series of structures on the 49 acre Glass House compound. This note
Back in a time made simple by the loss
Of detail, burned, dissolved, and broken off
Like graveyard marble sculpture in the weather,
There is a house that is no more a house
Upon a farm that is no more a farm
and in a town that is no more a town.
The house was astonishingly tchotchke-free. "I don't think clutter was allowed," the painter Jasper Johns, a friend of both men, once said. "One was always aware of their ruthless elegance."I find particularly telling, since my own house is not tchotchke-free, in fact it is the opposite of that, and in fact, I believe that it is in that tchotchke-ness that my house's artistry resides.
One more thing: I'm thinking about the Francis Bacon reconstructed studio in the Hugh Lane gallery in Dublin. I wish I had had time to visit it when we were there. That art space--the art made in that studio, the studio itself as a home--seems, if not sufficient, at least approaching sufficiency.
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