Winterim Professional Intensive 2015

This January the ICAA welcomed twenty-two architects, interior designers, builders, urban planners and students of architecture from around the world to participate in the ICAA’s Winterim Intensive. For nine days, participants immersed themselves in the fundamentals of Classical design, including: study of the classical orders, the literature  of classical architecture, hand drafting, observational drawing , watercolor rendering, and composition, which culminated in a design charette with a final review.
The Intensive is an annual program which offers participants the opportunity to  learn a systematic, rigorous and discriminating approach to classical  design.
Congratulations to the Winterim 2015 participants! 
David Anderson
Stacy Becker
David Beckwith
David Bryant
Jason Evans
Samuel Neill Furr
Samuel Neill Furr, Jr. 
Maxwell Imber
Kareesa Irwin
Lisa Kriedeman
Lindsay LaBudde
Kaitlyn Luzader
Lucy Lynch
Donald MacDonald
Andrew Mackie
Brian Will
Joey Reid
Dana Triano
David Ramage
Inbal Weinberg
Samantha White
Karl Nichol

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Inspired Places & Spaces – January

With the recent announcement of the ICAA New York Chapter now in formation, we asked NY Chapter leaders David Calligeros, John B. Murray, and Adrian Taylor to elaborate on the spaces that inspire them most. Two find inspiration right in the heart of Manhattan, while another is drawn to a space 175 feet below the surface of central Italy.

The Cathedral of Saint John the Divine

David Calligeros, ICAA New York Chapter President: When I first moved to New York I lived in Morningside Heights and would often walk around the grounds of the Cathedral of St. John the Divine. There was a garden on the south side populated with peacocks roosting in the trees and in the rafters of a garage, a garage that also housed a dusty and peacock-besmirched prewar Duesenburg or Cadillac or some-such behemoth. On winter nights the garden was breathtakingly beautiful and spooky, especially with a moon casting shadows from the monuments and bare trees. Of the cathedral itself I don’t recall much detail but was profoundly impressed by the sensation of hugeness; I had a better impression of “big” by the architect’s enclosing of just-so-much-space than I ever did standing on a mountain peak.

Pozzi di San Patrizio

John B. Murray, ICAA New York Chapter Board Member: In 2008, I had the opportunity to experience the Pozzi di San Patrizio (“St. Patrick’s Well”) – designed by Antonio Da Sangallo the Younger and built between 1527-1537 in Orvieto, Umbria, central Italy, which is a well structure descending 175 feet with a diameter of 43 ft at the base. What inspires me about this structure is the draw of natural light which descends the open cylinder permeating through the 72 windows to illuminate the double spiral ramps (more precisely termed a double helix).

Woolworth Building Lobby

Adrian Taylor, ICAA New York Chapter Board Member: One of my absolute favorite places in Manhattan is Cass Gilbert’s wonderful lobby of the Woolworth building. The space is very remarkable in its extensive use of carved ornament and lush, decorative finishes.  It truly feels more like a cathedral than a New York lobby.

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Mad About Cows

Peter’s Reflections
A monthly column by ICAA President, Peter Lyden


(Image: Daily Mail)

I hope you are as mad about cows as I am. You see, a country estate or farm is not complete without dairy cows and the magnificent barns that house them.

The current issue of Tatler magazine reported:

“From the Queen down, the cream of society is obsessed with bovine ungulates. And making cream, milk, and yogurt, too, and sometimes beef. And some want to breed the glossiest cows in the country to boot, to make their neighbour jealous to win first prize at the Royal Norfolk Show.”

There was a time in our own history that dairy cows and their magnificent dairy barns were very much de rigeur, as a vital part of the life of a “Gentleman Farm.” These farmers would breed dairy cows not only for their milk and cheese, but also in an effort to seek the blue ribbon at the local fair.

To keep their champion cows in their rightful setting, prominent families commissioned well-known architects of their day to create magnificent barns. There are many examples of these outstanding buildings but my favorites are those found at Shelburne Farms in Vermont.

Shelburne Farms, Vermont (Image: Don Shall, Shelburne Farms Flickr Pool)

Dr. William Seward Webb and his wife Eliza Osgood Vanderbilt Webb asked their friend, the great architect Robert H. Robertson (of the gothic revival church of St. James in New York City) to build their farming estate in Shelburne with great emphasis on the need to have magnificent barns. These cathedrals of barn architecture are worth visiting and revisiting.

Billings Farm, Vermont (Image: TripAdvisor)

Other fine examples of dairy barns can be seen at two Rockefeller estates, built around the same time as Shelburne. One must visit Billings Farms in Woodstock, Vermont where the Swiss cows are still the prettiest around, as well as Kykuit’s barns in Pocantico Hills.

Deep Dene Farm, Old Chatham, NY (Image: Peter Lyden)

In my own garden I can view one of the Hudson Valley’s magnificent dairy barns at Deep Dene Farm, Old Chatham. This was one man’s solace from his busy life on the Gold Coast of Long Island to seek peace and happiness on his dairy-breeding farm. Thankfully my new neighbor will be restoring this magnificent structure.

Locusts-on-Hudson (Image: Wikipedia)

There are many success stories in restoring old barns to new glory:

• Stone Barns at Pocantico Hills, which has been restored as a restaurant and center for food and agriculture.

• Hotelier Andre Balazs, today’s gentleman farmer, restored dairy barns and farms at Locusts-on-Hudson.

• Classicist leader Prince Charles reinvigorated his dairy operation and farm buildings at High Grove. His Royal Highness even insists that his cows listen to BBC Radio when they get milked.

• Our own ICAA member John Murray restored a noted Pennsylvania barn, relocating it to Old Chatham, NY. The barn completes the magical setting of his family’s home.

• Finally, one must visit Abby Rockefeller’s new dairy barn complex in Churchtown, NY (nearly complete). The new construction by architect Rick Anderson is a modern palace for dairy cows, which also includes a shop where products will be sold to the community. There is a round structure at one end of the complex so the cows can get exercise in the winter!

Churchtown barn complex, New York (Image: Rick Anderson)

Churchtown barn interior (Image: Rick Anderson)

I encourage the ICAA community to help restore barns of all types, from the grand and magnificent, to the simple and modest. New barns also help “complete the setting” alongside homes and landscape. Slowly, we hope to see these barns – and cows – dot our landscapes once again.

Peter Lyden, ICAA President

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Inspired Places & Spaces – December

Creativity and inspiration can be found in a variety of places, from the natural landscape to the built environment. For this month’s Inspired Places & Spaces feature we asked three up-and-coming leaders of the ICAA to share a glimpse into the spaces that inspire them most.

94 Main Street, Nantucket

Lucinda Ballard, ICAA Fellow: 94 Main Street on Nantucket, one of the two stately Greek Revival mansions on Main Street was designed and constructed by Frederick Brown Coleman, a local carpenter, in the 1840s.  A small hall with a simple staircase belies the astonishing domed ceiling of the circular second floor ballroom, with opulently carved plaster rosettes inspired by the Adam brothers,  a wide entablature, and pilasters with Corinthian capitals. This house represents not only the quality and variety of architecture on Nantucket, born from the extreme wealth of the golden age of whaling, but also the immense skills of the local carpenters and design-builders who were able to construct these showplaces on a tiny, faraway island.


The shore of the James River

Stefanie Mustian, ICAA Fellow: Growing up near the James River in Virginia, I used to go ‘hunting’ for the little pieces of old pottery and plates that wash up along the shore. Those beaches and small fragments of historic crockery always remind me of the extensive history of the area and the beautiful early colonial architecture of the region; it motivates me to develop designs with the same feelings of comfort, simplicity and sophistication.


Rotunda of the Chicago Cultural Center

Mary Kate Spach, ICAA Southern California NeoClassicist President: Standing beneath the magnificent Healy & Millet stained glass dome in the rotunda of the Chicago Cultural Center, I am overwhelmed by the power that art and architecture have to take us out of our me-centric worlds and remind us that it is through the inspiration of others that we, in turn, are inspired.

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Tribute to Sunny Marlborough

Peter’s Reflections
A monthly column by ICAA President, Peter Lyden


I have always credited my love of classical architecture, design, and landscapes to the memories I have from my parents’ homes in England, Wales, and Ireland. As children we are particularly affected by visual impacts, and to this day, I have vivid, sensory-filled memories of walking through foggy English gardens with my brother, shopping with my mother for the Chippendale sofa that filled our living room, and sketching the façade of our very simple Irish Georgian Farmhouse.

It is in part an homage to these memories that has led me to purchase my own Greek Revival Farmhouse in the Hudson Valley. The elegant proportion of its rooms and the way it blends with the natural landscape provide me with a peaceful escape from the chaotic city.

However, I have recently been thinking about how people rather than places that have had an even greater influence on my own love of architecture, interiors, and gardens.

Today I write to you about the late Duke of Marlborough, who died a few weeks ago peacefully in his sleep at his beloved home Blenheim Palace. He was Sunny to those who knew him.

Running and being “the boss” at Blenheim can be an overwhelming responsibility. Updating and maintaining a great house requires many skills, including exceptional leadership and business sense. However, it was a job he cherished. He faced all the challenges before him with spirit and determination and brought new life into Blenheim everyday.

We had wonderful experiences together from renovating Italian gardens, to replacing the statues on the façade, to rebuilding Capability Brown’s dam for the lake. He taught me so much about the history and architecture of Blenheim Palace, as well as other historic homes in England. However, what I remember most about Sunny was his commitment to and appreciation for the artisans and craftsmen who dedicated themselves to excellence on each project. This appreciation for detail and skill has had a strong impact on how I view architecture and art, but also how I approach many different challenges and projects in my life and career.

Sunny awoke each day and was truly happy to drive around the estate, see the progress of each project, and speak to the craftsmen and women about their work.

So yes, there are the visuals and places we experience as children that influence us later. However, there is no greater influence than a mentor or individual who is willing to share his knowledge and passion to influence your life and career.

I hope you all have a Sunny in your life. I know I am perennially grateful to him for my love of houses, interiors, and gardens. He made it all very real for me. Thank you Sunny.

– Peter Lyden, ICAA President

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