Higher Design

Thomas Connors | November 26, 2018 | Feature Features

Chicago auction house Wright prepares to sell a midcentury gem.
The cozy cottage features a charming fireplace and midcentury-modern features.

Between Design Within Reach and 1stdibs, it’s easy to nab a Saarinen Womb Chair or Greta Magnusson-Grossman Grasshopper lamp. Not such a snap to scoop up a whole house. But for the fervent midcentury-modern enthusiast, what could be better? This month, local auction house Wright has a gem on the block: Rufus Stillman Cottage, a Marcel Breuer design sitting snugly in the Connecticut countryside.

To be auctioned Dec. 11 (estimate: $2 million to $2.5 million), the simple wood-clad house—erected in 1973—is identical to the getaway Breuer built for himself on Cape Cod in 1944. The Hungarian-born designer and architect arrived stateside in 1937, joining his old Bauhaus colleague, Walter Gropius, at Harvard. In 1946, he moved to New York and continued to execute a number of projects, from residences to his harshly handsome box for the Whitney Museum of American Art on Madison Avenue.


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