Art Parties

A Picnic to Remember: The Glass House Turns 75 in Style

Guests gathering at Pavilion in the Pond, 1962. Photography by Paul Bickford. All images courtesy of the Glass House. 

Fancy a frolic around a modernist masterpiece? 

The Glass House Summer Party delighted attendees this past weekend as the art-minded set descended upon the New Canaan, Connecticut hills for the historic site's annual bash. Celebrating 75 years of the Philip Johnson-designed home, the festivities not only opened up the namesake structure but also saw the Brick House unveiled for the first time in 16 years. 

Brendan Fernandes and the dancers who treated guests to two performances.

“We could not have asked for a better day to celebrate 75 years of architecture, art, culture, fashion, and design,” notes The Glass House Executive Director Kirsten Reoch. “The crowd was a lively mix of friends from New York, neighbors from New Canaan, international artists, and modernist architecture fans from all over. I cannot imagine how we will ever top this!"

Fêting the artist Ed Ruscha, who created the limited-edition lithograph Glass House, 2024 for the occasion, the event provided a free-roaming experience soundtracked by DJ Rachel Winters throughout the afternoon. Canadian artist Brendan Fernandes offered not one but two performances, with dancers performing his liquid choreography on the lawn. Carrying picnic lunches by Elm, attendees wandered the property, down toward the pond or along the new exhibition “The Paper Log House” by Japanese architect Shigeru Ban. Scattered Tekla blankets provided the perfect spots for guests to enjoy both their meals and the idyllic scenery. 


After lunch, guests were invited to visit the Painting Gallery, which was full of works by the late Frank Stella, and the Sculpture Gallery, which houses Stella’s sculpture Raft of Medusa, Part 1, 1990 along with works by Michael Heizer, Robert Morris, and Bruce Nauman. Attendees also mingled around presenting sponsor Max Mara’s “al fresco” mini boutique and the accompanying summertime gelato cart, along with Aesop’s “Be Nosey” fragrance experience. 


Throughout the day, art lovers perused the Artsy-hosted Benefit Auction, which had works of Cindy Sherman, Annie Leibovitz, Pierre Yovanovitch, and more for sale. With all proceeds going to preserving the Glass House, healthy patronage was encouraged. 

With picnic baskets hanging off their arms, guests wandered back to their cars or to the train station still basking in the haze of the afternoon sun.