Triangle Modernist Houses Announces 2010 Modernist Home Tour

Event to feature nine modernist houses in Raleigh from the 1950s to today.

May 24, 2010 (RALEIGH, NC) — What’s Raleigh’s best-kept secret?  The Triangle has the third largest concentration of Modernist houses in the country, behind LA and Chicago — literally hundreds of exceptional houses — due to the Modernist influence of the NCSU College of Design’s influence over the last 61 years.

Nine of those modernist houses, plus one office space, will be open for touring during the Triangle Modernist Houses (TMH) Modernist Home Tour in Raleigh on Saturday, September 25, from 1 – 4:30 p.m.

This tour, TMH’s 12th,  will feature modernist houses from mid-century 1950’s to cutting-edge new homes, all of which are defined by open interiors, abundant glass, aesthetic geometries, and sweeping lines.

TMH’s award-winning home tours, organized by TMH founder and director George Smart, are the longest-running, professionally-conducted architectural tours in the region. The past 11 tours have allowed over 2000 people from around the state to tour 21 Modernist houses.

“As with all TMH home tours, we showcase the value of exceptional architecture and construction,” Smart said. “TMH gives the public unique opportunities to go inside nine of the coolest houses in Raleigh that they would rarely be able to see otherwise.  We’ve lined up some of the best.  And photography is not only allowed, it is encouraged.”

Preservation North Carolina, the nonprofit statewide historic preservation organization dedicated to protecting and promoting buildings, landscapes and sites important to the state’s diverse heritage, is including the TMH Tour as part the 2010 Preservation NC Annual Conference September 23-25.

Smart, well-known for speaking on “Mayberry Modernism” across North Carolina, emphasizes the green, sustainable features of the TMH tour.

“Our free hop-on, hop-off bus system reduces the carbon footprint and assures neighborhoods are not disrupted with hundreds of cars.  People don’t have to spend their day finding, driving to, and parking at each home.”

Tickets to the 2010 Tour will be available through the TMH website and various ticket outlets in the coming weeks.

Sponsors include Preservation North Carolina, Ambiente International, the NCSU Gregg Museum of Art, the Louise Cameron Art Museum in Wilmington, Eidolon Designs, Center Studio Architecture, Nowell’s Contemporary Furniture, Modern Home Network, and Beyond Blue Interiors. Companies can still sign on as sponsors by contacting George Smart at 919-740-8407.

Ticket information and other details will be announced at a later date. For more information on Triangle Modernist Houses, visit

Dick Bell, Brian Shawcroft To Headline TMH’s Final “Appetite 4 Architecture” Dinner & Discussion

Dick Bell in Pullen Park © f8 Photo Studios

May 18, 2010 (RALEIGH, NC) –Two North Carolina masters of modern design – landscape architect Dick Bell, FASLA, and architect Brian Shawcroft, AIA – will headline the final “Appetite 4 Architecture” dinner and discussion on Tuesday, June 1, at Solas restaurant on Glenwood South in Raleigh.

Appetite 4 Architecture (A4A) is sponsored by Triangle Modernist (TMH) as a way for the general public to dine with prominent members of the Triangle’s design community in an intimate, small group setting. Dinner guests are able to discuss anything they want with the designers, from their dream home or renovation project, to the designers’ work or modernist houses they’ve admired. Previous A4A dinners have featured award-winning architects and designers Frank Harmon, Dail Dixon, Will Alphin, Vinny Petrarca, Arthur Cogswell, Louis Cherry, Philip Szostak, and Ellen Cassilly.

Dick Bell, a fellow of both the American Society of Landscape Architects and the American Academy in Rome, is well known in the Capital City for the many landmark-status projects he has designed over his 55-year career. A graduate of the first class of the then-newly established School of Design at North Carolina State University, he designed Pullen Park, the NCSU’s “Brickyard” plaza and sculpture garden, the amphitheater at Meredith College, the serpentine wall and soccer field at St. Mary’s College, the Moore Square Transit block in the central business district, and the grounds for the modernist Legislative Building. His work largely introduced the practice of landscape architecture to the general public back before it was a registered profession. And his former “Water Garden” home/office complex on Highway 70 was the proving ground for generations of young landscape architects as well as the home of “Garden Gallery,” a prominent cultural center from 1960s through the 1980s.

Brian Shawcroft, AIA

Brian Shawcroft is synonymous with modernist residential design in the Triangle area. A graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard University, he worked with the renowned Harwell Hamilton Harris, FAIA, in Raleigh before establishing the firm Shawcroft-Taylor with architect Clay Taylor in 1971. From that point, the British transplant designed nearly the Triangle area’s entire modernist house inventory from the 1970s through the 1990s.

“These prolific gentlemen know just about everything concerning Raleigh residential architecture and the NCSU College of Design for the last 50-plus years,” said TMH founder and director George Smart. “This A4A dinner event is a rare opportunity to enjoy free-ranging discussions with two giants in their fields in an informal but upscale dining environment.”

Tickets for the Bell-Shawcroft dinner are $49 per person, which includes three courses (appetizer, entree, dessert) from a pre-selected menu, plus coffee, water, tea, tax, and gratuity. Vegetarian options will also be available. Dinner will begin at 6:30 p.m.

For more information on Appetite 4 Architecture, or to reserve tickets for the Bell-Shawcroft dinner, go to

For more information on Triangle Modernist Houses, visit

Architectural Historian George Smart To Present “Mayberry Modernism” In Salisbury

Architect John Ramsay, AIA, designed this house for himself in 1950.

May 12, 2010 (SALISBURY, NC) — What’s North Carolina’s best-kept secret?  The Triangle region has the third largest concentration of Modernist houses in the nation, behind Los Angeles and Chicago — literally hundreds of mid-century gems thanks to the Modernist influence of the North Carolina State University College of Design’s faculty and students over the past 61 years.

On Thursday, May 27, the Historic Salisbury Foundation, in partnership with Stout Studio Architecture, will host George Smart, founder and director of Triangle Modernist (TMH) as he presents “Mayberry Modernism: Why The Triangle Is America’s Hotspot for Way Cool Houses” in the Historic Salisbury Station, 215 Depot Street, beginning at 5 p.m.

A cocktail reception for the Historic Salisbury Foundation and other invited guests will be held immediately afterwards at the modernist home of Marc and Anne Hoffman of Salisbury.

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