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  Glacier Blue® Architectural Topics & News
     Monthly Newsletter
December 2010
In This Issue


Topic of the Month: A Modernist Addition

Architectural Firm of the Month: Newick Architects

Helpful Links for Architects

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poinsettiaHappy holidays! Welcome to the December issue of our monthly architectural newsletter. In the new year, we will continue to bring you informative articles about projects that architects and designers are working on around the country. If you have a project you would like to share with us, please contact us. We may choose to feature your project in one of our upcoming issues of this newsletter. In January we are planning to announce a brand new product line, so watch for the news in our next issue. Until then, we at Devonian Stone of New York, Inc. wish you a joyous holiday season and a very Happy New Year!

Architectural Firm of the Month: Newick Architects

newick firestone 1Craig Newick brings a wide variety of experiences to any design project. He has worked in the offices of some of the country's most well known architects where he has worked on practically every building type at every scale. He is as adept at addressing the intricacies of the design of a door handle where every decision and every millimeter counts as he is in planning large institutional buildings with complex programs which require multidisciplinary design teams to execute.

Craig Newick is a registered architect in the State of Connecticut, a member of the American Institute of Architects and the Connecticut Society of Architects. He has a Master of Architecture degree from Yale University and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Architecture from Lehigh University. In 2000, he won an Honor Award from AIA Connecticut. In 1996, Newick and his frequent collaborator, Linda Lindroth, were selected by the Architecture League of New York for their prestigious Emerging Voices lecture series. In 1998, Craig Newick won a fellowship in sculpture from the Connecticut Commission on the Arts. In the past 10 years Newick and frequent collaborator Linda Lindroth have won over 20 awards, grants and prizes. Their work has been exhibited and published extensively.

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Topic of the Month: A Modernist Addition

newick firestone 2
Fort Hill Landscape 2
When architect Craig Newick was hired to design an addition to a modern house in Longmeadow, Massachusetts, he created the Firestone Pavilion. The project offered him an opportunity to use his modernist aesthetic to create a new structure to not only compliment the original building, but to also enhance the property as a whole.

Newick explains, "It's an interesting house in Longmeadow, MA. It was built in two pieces - the first piece was built in the 1970's and the second piece was built in the early 1980's. For some reason the previous owner decided that this modernist house needed an English country gazebo and lattice fence around the pool, so you walked out the back door of this modern house and there was a dark green lattice enclosure around the pool. It made no sense. So my clients had an interest in making the pool enclosure and the pavilion more consistent."

Aside from tying everything together stylistically, Newick also created a pavilion that serves multiple purposes. Newick explains, "There's a 14-foot wide glass sliding door that traces the pool and you can slide it out of the way and use it as a pavilion for a party, or you can close it and use it as a place to put your car. So it gets used in a number of ways."

"The thing that's really interesting about it is that I think it's better than the original house in terms of the refinement of its detailing and the quality of its materials. In the foreground when you drive in, you tend to see it first and discount the background. The original house is a very nice house, but there are certain aspects of it, such as wood trellises that were just rudimentarily put together and you don't notice them anymore because the fence is of such a high key that you just sort of focus on that. It's an interesting example of how a small addition can radically transform the overall perception of a much larger thing."

The glass wall is perhaps one of the most striking features of the Firestone Pavilion. "The first two panels are 4 feet high and 10 feet long and are made of ?" thick acid-edged low-iron super clear glass. The glass wall sits on a parapet wall and is held vertically by an aluminum shoe. The glass is cantilevered from the thick aluminum bracket and then there's a little round patch that holds the two sheets together, which is 2" in diameter. The glass is translucent, so you can see the two panels from the street, but we also wanted to provide a bit of privacy for the pool on the other side. Around the corner of the house, the glass becomes clear. It's not acid-edged, it's just low-iron super clear glass. Super clear glass is really interesting because it has very little iron in it and if you look at the edge even in a very thick piece, it's not dark green like you would expect it to be. It's aqua colored so it looks like solid pool water. It's really beautiful, and it is a great material to surround the pool with because it ends up looking just like the pool water."    

"The rear lot line fence is about 45 feet long and 6 feet high and there is a painted steel frame which is made out of steel I-beams and various other pieces. Then there are panels of woven stainless steel mesh which sort of look like something Anni Albers would have made. It's translucent so you can see through it depending on the light. When there's bright light on it, you can't see through it at all, but when it's backlit you see through it as if it's almost not even there. And it catches the snow and it does all kinds of interesting things."

The stainless steel mesh panels are one example of how Newick carefully chose building materials for the numerous ways in which their characteristics would enhance their surroundings.  He explains, "You can get really hung up on materials. There are lots of examples where people just pick materials because they're expensive, but what I'm interested in is trying to find a combination between the architectural idea that we're trying to achieve and materials that take that idea and make it better. So we're not spending money for no reason. We're trying to be really cognizant about the costs of things and trying to make the project as good as it can be for the resources that are available."

Aside from architecture, Newick has a background in sculpture as well, having won numerous grants for installations, including a Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts in 1993. When asked about the relation between his sculpture and his architectural design process, Newick explains, "The sculpture that I've worked on has been in the form of installations which are done with project grants from the NEA or the Connecticut Commission on the Arts, or they've come from institutions like university art galleries. The reason I got into it is because when you get out of graduate school, you're going to work for an office and do very rudimentary tasks as architectural production, and I wanted to keep working creatively. So I started working on these installations with Linda Lindroth as a way to keep operating at a very high level. It just was a way that I found to keep that creative side going."

"The people who influence me are all the architects of course, but I'm also very influenced by people like James Turrell, Richard Serra and Robert Smithson, and those guys are all sculptors. I remember once I was at a lecture given by Richard Serra and somebody asked him what the difference between architecture and sculpture was. In his response, he gave an appreciative analysis of the work of Japanese architect Tadao Ando, but he said it was a question of use, and that architecture had to provide a combination of use, whereas sculpture didn't. I'm not sure that that line is as distinct as that. In other words, I think the best of both are looking for a kind of presence and architecture sure has a list of requirements that it's expected to accommodate, but it can be very close to the same thing. So I think that sculpture and architecture relate directly, absolutely."

"The important thing about the Firestone Pavilion is the notion that an addition, even if it's a very small piece compared to the original house, can radically alter your perception of the whole thing. The kind of work that I enjoy doing is work for people who care about what they're getting. And this client is pretty pleased with the result."

Helpful Links for Architects

AIA Interior Architecture Knowledge Community
The AIA Interior Architecture Knowledge Community provides leadership and expertise to practitioners of interior architecture and design, working cooperatively with its members and other interiors organizations to address relevant, timely practice issues, markets, and trends, such as licensing, liability, environmental, and technological considerations. Through the Interior Architecture Knowledge Community, important links are maintained with allied professionals, service providers, and manufacturers. If you wish to become a member of the AIA Interior Architecture Knowledge Community, call AIA Member Services at 800-242-3837, or visit:

Architect Online's Continuing Education Center

Architect Online's Online Continuing Education Center gives professionals a convenient way to earn necessary continuing education credits without having to set foot in a classroom. The courses listed, sponsored by the companies noted, are accessible from anywhere you can establish an online connection. Just register, read the required material, and then take the test, either through a downloadable mail-in form, or free via a secure online connection, depending on the course. You'll be able to maintain your professional credentials, at your pace, and at a location that works for you. Visit:

Architectural Record Continuing Education Center
Architectural Record magazine has a free Continuing Education Center where architects can earn AIA Continuing Education Credits online. Visit:

Architectural Record Discussion Forums

The McGraw Hill Construction Community, publisher of Architectural Record, has provided architects with a forum to express ideas, opinions, suggestions, and gripes. The discussion forums are open to all, and include topics such as Green Building Projects, Virtual Design, Practice Matters and a forum for younger architects. Visit:

CORA - Congress of Residential Architecture
CORA is a grass root organization that encourages our members to participate in the dialog of improving residential architecture in a way that suits them best. The purpose of the CORA is to provide a continuing forum for advocating and enhancing residential architecture by all individuals, both professionals and non-professionals, that share a common interest in improving the quality of the homes and communities we live in. Visit:

The Green Meeting Industry Council

The Green Meeting Industry Council (GMIC) is a non profit 501(c)(6) membership-based organization. Their goal is to encourage collaboration within the meetings industry toward the development of green standards that will improve the environmental performance of meetings and events on a global basis. The GMIC is the only professional green meetings organization that is a member of the Convention Industry Council. For more information visit:

The World Architecture Community
The World Architecture Community invites all architects to create a free profile on their website. The World Architecture Portal is a unique comprehensive international directory and catalog of contemporary architecture where all architects, scholars and institutions may submit their work and links to share with colleagues from around the world.
For more information visit:

We hope you enjoyed our informative monthly e-newsletter. For questions, comments or more information, please e-mail or call us today.

Liz Benton, Editor 
Glacier Blue® Architectural Topics & News
Devonian Stone of New York, Inc.

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