The Glass House Summer Party and online auction

A shindig raising funds for the iconic art centre

Image: Robin Hill

Fans of modernist architecture and contemporary art are in for a treat on Saturday June 13, when The Glass House Summer Party is held amid the rolling hills of New Canaan, Connecticut – but for those too far afield to join the celebrations, there’s a virtual way of joining in too.

The Glass House – Philip Johnson’s iconic, minimalist masterpiece dating from 1949 – sits on a spectacular 49-acre property that has grown to include 14 structures, among them several devoted to permanent collections of 20th-century painting and sculpture, as well as temporary exhibition spaces. The proceeds from Saturday’s festivities will go toward the preservation of the Da Monsta sculpture gallery, where pieces currently on show include Robert Morris’ fibreglass wonder Untitled (Nine Fiberglass Sleeves), John Chamberlain’s The Archbishop, The Golfer and Ralph and Robert Rauschenberg’s Empire II, a multimedia installation comprised of a wind turbine, a roller skate and wire.


Sponsored by Swarovski, this fundamental luncheon – complete with a performance by experimental music group Lucky Dragons and classic lawn games – will feature both formal tables in a marquee ($5,000-$25,000) and picnic baskets (included in the $500 basic ticket price) prepared by Campagna at the Bedford Post Inn for lunch on the grass. The Summer Party will also see the launch of a limited edition (of 30) sculptural piece – Recessed Discussion Stream (second picture) – by artist Liam Gillick that will be available with the purchase of a $5,000 or higher ticket (platinum tables at $25,000, for example, include 10 VIP tickets, private pre-reception, two limited-edition works by Gillick, and 10 VIP gift bags).

In addition to the outdoor festivities, those further afield can get involved, as The Glass House is also holding an online contemporary art auction in conjunction with Paddle8. Jeff Koons’ silkscreened Monkey Train (2007; staring bid, $27,000, third picture), Robert Indiana’s Love is God (2014; $5,000) and Hiroshi Sugimoto’s California Condor (2012; $6,000) – a pigmented print on Mulberry paper – are among the sought-after lots that will raise additional funds for preservation projects at this National Historic Site. In addition to the visual arts, The Glass House Overnight ($18,000) – an all-inclusive house party that includes a lavish dinner party and accommodation for 10 – will also be under the virtual hammer.


Staying in Connecticut? Why not try these recommendations: The White Hart Inn, The Mayflower Inn or Michael Trapp – or insider hotspots loved by the late, great Oscar de la Renta and Georgina Chapman.

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