NCMH Founder George Smart Receives AIA NC’s Legacy Award

For service to North Carolina architecture

NCMH founder and director George Smart

NCMH founder and director George Smart

September 18, 2013 (Durham, NC) – On a moonlit night aboard the USS North Carolina in Wilmington, NC, George Smart, founder of North Carolina Modernist Houses (NCMH), received the prestigious Legacy Award from the North Carolina Chapter of the American Institute of Architects (AIA NC).
According to AIA NC, the Legacy Award is given to non-architect organizations or individuals “who demonstrate that they have, with purpose, influenced the advancement of architecture and/or raised the public’s awareness of the positive impact that architecture and planning can make on the perception and livability of North Carolina communities.” It has only been awarded twice before: to Biltmore Corporation in Asheville in 2010 and Preservation North Carolina in 2011.
NCMH (formerly Triangle Modernist Houses) is a non-profit organization dedicated to archiving, preserving, and promoting Modernist residential design across the state from the 1950s to today.
Along with creating the country’s largest open digital archive of Modernist houses and architects at, NCMH maintains a free listing of NC Modernist houses for sale or rent.  The site has 60 gigs of content including architecture magazines and other documents, lectures, and video interviews with NC architects.
NCMH hosts public tours of Modernist houses; supports 9th and 10th grade design education through Project BauHow; sponsors an annual series of architecture movies; hosts summer networking happy hours for the design community; and hosts an annual dinner where local Modernist architects gather with the  public. All NCMH events are intended to raise awareness of Modernist design, to connect people with Modernist architects, and to help preserve Modernist houses for future generations. 
In 2012, NCMH created the George Matsumoto Prize, a unique design awards program that recognizes excellence in recent single-family Modernist residential design in North Carolina.
In his presentation in Wilmington, Executive Director David Crawford quoted architect Frank Harmon, FAIA, as saying: “No one has done more for North Carolina architecture in the last six years than George Smart.”
For more information on the AIA NC Legacy Award, go to and click on “Design and Chapter Awards.”    For more information on George Smart and NCMH, visit

NEWS & OBSERVER: “NC Modernist Houses contest gives awards for outstanding new designs”

Michael Rank's 3,200-square-foot modern gothic home recently received a Design Award from the Triangle chapter of the American Institute of Architects and is the top winner in the George Matsumoto Prize competition.

Michael Rank’s 3,200-square-foot modern gothic home recently received a Design Award from the Triangle chapter of the American Institute of Architects and is the top winner in the George Matsumoto Prize competition.


If the term “modern architecture” brings to mind a stark style best suited to urban landscapes, you may do a double take when looking over this year’s George Matsumoto Prize winners.

The six new homes recently honored by the N.C. Modernist Houses contest range from a rustic mountain cabin to a coastal villa that sits lightly at the water’s edge as if poised to flit away. Yet what connects this diverse collection of homes are the staples of modernist architecture: functional form and a design that reflects each home’s location.

George Smart, founder of the nonprofit N.C. Modernist Houses (formerly known as Triangle Modernist Houses), says another common thread among the award winners was an emphasis on energy conservation.

“Sustainability and energy efficiency – those are very important qualities,” Smart said. “People want to have that option.” READ MORE…

Capital Area Preservation and NC Modernist Houses Co-Host “Mayberry Modernism”

NCMH’s George Smart will discuss North Carolina’s legacy of extraordinary Modernist houses, 224339_LcdpQI4KnjOcIPzFVlM82wquEsuch as the recently demolished Paschal House in Raleigh.

July 11, 2013 (Raleigh, NC) – Capital Area Preservation (CAP), Wake County’s non-profit historic preservation organization, along with North Carolina Modernist Houses (formerly Triangle Modernist Houses), will host “Mayberry Modernism: North Carolina’s Modernist Legacy,” a presentation by NCMH director George Smart, on Wednesday, August 7, at 5:30 p.m. in the new AIA NC Center for Architecture & Design, 14 East Peace Street in downtown Raleigh. The event is free and open to the public or $10 for architects who want continuing education credit.

“Mayberry Modernism” showcases North Carolina’s surprising collection of Modernist residences from the 1950s through today, many of which are in good shape but some of which are endangered or have been destroyed.

“CAP is delighted to partner with George Smart and NC Modernist Houses to bring this interesting and informative presentation to Raleigh,” said Gary Roth, CAP Executive Director. “Our commitment to preservation of the whole spectrum of Wake County’s historic architecture and George’s enthusiasm for the Modernist houses that are such a significant portion of that spectrum in Raleigh and Wake County is the perfect fit. Whether you are a Modernist house aficionado or if Modernist houses are totally new to you, I believe that you will enjoy and learn from George’s presentation.”

Founded in 1972, Capital Area Preservation is Wake County’s only countywide non-profit historic preservation organization. CAP’s mission is to advocate and invest in the preservation of historic resources as an essential element of Wake County’s growth. For more information, visit the CAP website at

For more information on “Mayberry Modernism: North Carolina’s Modernist Legacy,” go to and click on “Speaking.”


Triangle Modernist Houses Announces 2013 Advisory Council

redchairGroup draws from diverse architecture and real estate community.

December 6, 2012 (Durham, NC) – George Smart, Executive Director of Triangle Modernist Houses (TMH), has announced the 2013 TMH Advisory Council.

Triangle Modernist Houses is dedicated to documenting, preserving, and promoting modernist residential design in North Carolina. The TMH Advisory Council is comprised of a diverse cross-section of the design, real estate, and preservation community.  Council Members support and improve TMH’s programming and give input on TMH’s events, including house tours, architecture movies, fundraising efforts, trips, presentations, and competitions.

The members of the 2013 TMH Advisory Council are:

The Advisory Council meets twice a year.  For more information on Triangle Modernist Houses, visit

Triangle Modernist Houses Presents “Modernism at Risk: Modern Solutions for Saving Modern Landmarks”

The 1938 Goodyear House designed by Edward Durell Stone. Architecture critic Paul Goldberger called it “one of the most important houses built in the United States between the two world wars.”

A nine-day international architecture exhibit at the new AIA NC Center for Architecture & Design

April 24, 2012 (Raleigh, NC) — Triangle Modernist Houses (TMH), the award-winning non-profit organization dedicated to documenting, preserving, and promoting Modernist residential design, will present “Modernism at Risk: Modern Solutions for Saving Modern Landmarks,” an international exhibit, from June 1-9 in the new AIA NC Center for Architecture & Design in downtown Raleigh.

“Modernism at Risk” features a large-format photographic gallery of destroyed or endangered Modernist buildings by internationally renowned photographer Andrew Moore.  The exhibit has traveled the world including the Art Institute of Tampa, the Preservation Foundation of Palm Beach, The AIA New York Center for Architecture, Lund University in Sweden, the University of Florida-Gainesville, the University of Montreal, and the University of Michigan’s Taubman School of Architecture.

A project of the World Monuments Fund, “Modernism at Risk” presents five case studies exploring the role designers play in preserving Modern landmarks. These include buildings by architectural luminaries Mies van der Rohe, Walter Gropius, Marcel Breuer, Eduardo Catalano, Paul Rudolph, Charles Gwathmey, Edward Durell Stone, and Warren Platner. The exhibit’s goal is to persuade the public that Modern buildings can continue to be economically and functionally viable.

“The demise of Modern buildings is a local issue,” said TMH founder and board chair George Smart. “Starting with the destruction of Raleigh’s Catalano House in 2001, we have lost many ‘livable works of art.’ In addition to the photographs, the exhibit will include rare models and a ongoing video loop of award-winning houses in North Carolina. People can learn about great NC houses still standing, which ones are endangered, and how we can work to preserve them.”

Modernist architecture firms and product vendors in the Triangle area are sponsoring each day of the exhibit. They will share samples of their own work and be on hand to speak with tour-goers. These sponsors are: Frank Harmon, FAIA, of Frank Harmon Architect PA; Vinny Petrarca of Tonic Design + Construction; Phil Szostak, FAIA, of Szostak Design/Build; Steve Schuster, FAIA, of Clearscapes Architecture; Kenneth Hobgood, FAIA, of Kenneth Hobgood Architects; Matthew Griffith, AIA, and Erin Sterling Lewis, AIA, of In Situ Studio; Will Alphin of Alphin Design Build; Jerry Nowell of Nowell’s Contemporary Furniture; and Dan Nicely, Assoc. AIA, of VMZINC.

Tickets to the exhibit are: Opening night, June 1, $6.95 in advance, $10 at the door; June 2-9, $3.95 advance, $5 at the door. AIA North Carolina members are admitted free.  For more information and tickets, visit Proceeds benefit TMH’s ongoing documentation, preservation, and promotion projects.

The new AIA NC Center for Architecture & Design is located at 14 East Peace Street directly across from Peace College. For more information, contact George Smart at 919-740-8407.

About the World Monument Fund:

Founded in 1965, the World Monuments Fund (WMF) is a private international historic preservation organization based in New York City. For nearly 50 years, WMF has worked to save and preserve endangered historic sites in all areas of the world. The “Modernism at Risk” exhibit is underwritten nationally through a generous gift from Knoll. For more information: