CABE students explore and share Hassrick House past.
The public recently experienced a masterpiece of mid-century modern architecture as Jefferson opened the famous Hassrick House for tours guided by architecture students.
Designed by Richard Neutra—an international icon of modern architecture—the property was commissioned by Kenneth and Barbara Hassrick in 1958. Neutra built most of his structures on the West Coast, making the Hassrick House a unique property in the region.
Jefferson purchased the home nestled behind the SEED Center in 2017, creating a place for multidisciplinary teams of College of Architecture and the Built Environment students to explore the history, design, construction, adaptation, restoration, preservation and sustainability of the home listed on the Philadelphia Register of Historic Places. Neutra is best known for his role in introducing the International Style into American architecture.
The Hassrick House tours on April 8 attended by over 100 community members, faculty and staff also served as the launch of Jefferson’s Center for the Preservation of Modernism. Part of the new MS in historic preservation program, the Center will serve as a catalyst for research that addresses the protection and conservation of structures like these. It will be a space for the larger preservation community, offering lectures and symposia that examine pressing issues facing modern structures and sites.
Following the tours, Theodore Prudon, a modern architecture preservation expert and founding president of Docomomo US, presented in the Tuttleman Auditorium. He has worked on restorations of the Woolworth Building, Chrysler Building and a Lescaze townhouse. In the talk, Prudon discussed the Hassrick House, as well as Neutra’s legacy and philosophy that design can be a catalyst for healthy living.
The home features a restored kitchen with George Nakashima woodwork and a living room with a signature Neutra wall of glass connecting the home to its landscaping and private garden views. The five-bedroom, three-bathroom property also includes a 900-square-foot vaulted solarium/artist studio designed by Philadelphia modernist architect Irwin Stein, a large media room and terraced courtyard.
See more about the house below. (Photos by Gary Schempp)