A Touch of Glass in Connecticut
In the bedroom community of New Canaan, Connecticut, Philip Johnson’s landmark Glass House disappears and then rises from fog.
Atop this wooded promontory where Johnson often retreated from 1949 until his death in 2005, Japanese artist Fujiko Nakaya choreographed 600 water nozzles for “Veil,” a hide-and-reveal sequence that once each hour envelops the transparent house.
In the words of Glass House director Henry Urbach, Nakaya’s art installation transforms “a timeless icon into something ephemeral.”
Art 101: Coining the term “International Style,” Johnson mounted the first U.S. exhibition of modern architecture in 1932.
How to Visit: Open for the season through November 30 in 2014, this National Trust for Historic Preservation property offers tours and, new this year, self-guided walks.
Visitors can explore the famed architect’s house, a sculpture gallery, a paintings gallery with rotating walls, and a whimsical structure known as Da Monsta.
- Nat Geo Expeditions
Behind Doors: In Johnson’s “viewing platform,” a brick cylinder bathroom is the only space without a view.
Travel Trivia: Johnson is said to have liked petting his favorite corner of the warped Da Monsta building to soothe “the monster.”
This piece, written by Jean Lawlor Cohen, first appeared in the October 2014 issue of National Geographic Traveler magazine.