Fire Island Modernist: June 26 Book Talk at DORMA Design Center

Horace Gifford, the subject of Christopher Rawlins’s newly released book, Fire Island ModernistHorace Gifford and the Architecture of Seduction, is an elusive, complex figure. Mr. Rawlins will discuss his book and the extraordinary beach-house designs of the charismatic architect at a book talk at 6:30 p.m. on June 26 at the DORMA Americas Design Center in Manhattan.

 

Rawlins’s research reveals Gifford as a charismatic charmer who set his own course in life and in business. The architect’s beach-house designs transformed the terrain and culture of New York’s Fire Island from a sleepy bohemian backwater to a wildly permissive place.

 

Blending cultural and architectural history, Fire Island Modernistponders a fascinating era through the story of an architect and his work. Gifford, a charismatic charmer who suffered from depression and attended business meetings in a Speedo, perfected a hedonistic modernism in cedar and glass, as attuned to natural landscapes as it was to our animal natures. Gifford died of AIDS in 1992.

 

The two-hour talk begins at 6:30 p.m. in the center, 1040 Avenue of the Americas, 22nd Floor. A reception will follow; books will be available for sale and signing by the author. This event is organized by the American Institute of Architects New York Chapter. Admission is free to AIA members, $10 to non-members; those wishing to attend must register in advance at https://s01.123signup.com/servlet/SignUp?P=15334411911426541500&PG=1533441182300.

 

About Christopher Rawlins

An architect and the founder of Rawlins Design, Rawlins has established a New York-based practice whose projects include new beach houses, mid-century modernist beach house restorations, and retail environments across North America, Europe, and Asia. He majored in architecture at the Georgia Institute of Technology, studied for a year in Paris, and obtained his master's degree from Princeton University. He has taught at Lehigh University; his work has been published in the New York TimesWallpaperInterior DesignMetropolisModernism, and MonocleFire Island Modernist: Horace Gifford and the Architecture of Seduction is his first book.

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