Details

Keywords Change this

Neo Classicism

Project timeline

August 1955 – June 1956

Type

Private House

Location Change this

New Canaan
USA

Also known as Change this

Bridge House, Villa Ponte

Architect Change this

Client Change this

Rawleigh and Mary Ann Warner

Warner House Change this

New Canaan, USA
by John Johansen Change this
1 of 13

Description Change this

Warner House, also known as Bridge House, was designed by John Johansen. Johansen was a member of the colloquially termed 'Harvard 5', along with Marcel Breuer, Philip Johnson, Landis Gores and Eliot Noyes.

Warner house is a Neo-Palladian structure, designed during what the architect proclaimed as his "Neo-Classical Period."

Johansen described the house as follows: "Of my designs, the Villa Ponte or Warner House, 1957, most elegantly interpreted the Palladian ideal: the central pavilion was the bridge that spanned the stream, its three bays covered by arched vaults. Flanking this bridge were secondary pavilions rendered in pink stucco decoratively embossed with my designs. Gold leaf was used in the arches and on the living room ceiling, and on the exterior spurting off rainwater to the stream below were eight gilded gargoyles designed by the sculptor Robert Engman. Is this not enough classical revival in the 1950s to raise the envy of most postmodernist architects some 20 or 30 years later!"

The house had an H-shaped plan with the Rippowam River running under the glassed-in central portion of the building. Each pavilion had a separate function: the parent's pavilion contained the master suite; the children's pavilion contained two bedrooms and a bath; the service pavilion contained the kitchen, storage area, a servant's bedroom, and a basement playroom; and the guest pavilion contained a guest bedroom, bath, and courtyard. The center part of the house contained the social space: a living room, dining room, and balconies overlooking the river. Provisions were made to extend two legs of the "H" for a garage and playroom, but this never occurred.

The Warner House was chosen as one of the best contemporary homes of 1958 by Architectural Record. It was also featured in the New York Times, House & Home, and Architectural Design.

In 1962, the courtyard outside the guestroom was enclosed. In 1969, a natural outdoor pool was constructed. Between 1968 and 1970, a separate 3-car garage/poolhouse was completed. In 1993, living quarters over the garage were constructed. According to Rawleigh Warner, Jr., the alterations were designed by Johansen.

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