New Podcast Promises Casual, Lively Discussions About Modernist Architecture

podcast logo 4US Modernist Radio brings celebrities and local luminaries to the studio

 

North Carolina Modernist Houses announces the launch of US Modernist Radio, a casual, amusing, and informative podcast series dedicated to lively discussions about Modernist architecture.

“Make no mistake, US Modernist Radio is not a stuffy, academic diatribe,” says host George Smart, NCMH founder, whose side-kick for the podcast is national comedian Frank King. “Listeners will hear interesting and expressive people who enjoy, own, create, dream about, preserve, love, and even hate Modernist architecture, which we believe has created the most exciting and, yes, controversial buildings in the world.”

To that end, Smart has assembled a series of discussions with guests that

Vanity Fair architecture critic, author Paul Goldberger
Vanity Fair architecture critic, author Paul Goldberger

mix national luminaries by phone with local preservationists and advocates in the studio. National figures include actress and modernist homeowner Kelly LynchVanity Fair’s celebrated architecture critic Paul Goldberger, the Avett Brother’s cellist and Modernist homeowner Joe Kwon, and architect Sarah Susanka, author of the popular Not-So-Big House book series.

A few local guests include architect Milton Small, whose father designed many exemplary mid-century Modernist structures in the Triangle region; Louis Cherry and Marsha Gordon, who recently withstood a storm of controversy over the Modernist house they built in a Raleigh historic district; Myrick Howard, executive director of Preservation North Carolina, Inc.; and architects Robby Johnston and Craig Kerins of The Raleigh Architecture Co. who designed and built Joe Kwon’s house on an urban infill lot in downtown Raleigh.

Via iTunes or Libsyn, US Modernist Radio subscribers will automatically receive new shows every two weeks. The first three podcasts are available now. For more information, go to www.usmodernist.org.

US Modernist Radio is an initiative of North Carolina Modernist Houses, the award-winning non-profit organization dedicated to archiving, preserving, and promoting Modernist residential design across the state. For more information, visit www.ncmodernist.org or contact George Smart at George@ncmodernist.org.

> Download and subscribe on ITunes: itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/us-modernist-radio

> Download for Android or PC: usmodernist.libsyn.com

 

Modernist Homes Tour in Charlotte, Plus Shopping at IKEA

NCMH’s ModShop Tour is May 9th

The 1964 Mitchum residence is one of the mid-century Modernist houses on the tour.
The 1964 Mitchum residence is one of the mid-century Modernist houses on the tour.

North Carolina Modernist Houses (NCMH), the award winning non-profit dedicated to documenting, preserving, and promoting Modernist residential design, will be going on its semi-annual ModShop Tour on Saturday, May 9, from 7 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. This popular bus tour includes shopping at IKEA as well as visiting several Modernist houses and a church as part of Historic Charlotte’s Mad About Modern Tour.
Aboard a spacious, wi-fi-equipped bus, tour participants will be taken to five houses and one Modernist church:

  1. The 1964 Hugh C. Mitchum Residence, designed by the late Charlotte engineer Aubrey Arant (pictured above)
  2. 4642 Sharon View(architect unknown)
  3. 2434 Ainsdale(architect unknown)
  4. The Levinson House, 2827 Rothwood Drive, designed by Charlotte architect Stan Russell
  5. The McFarland House, 714 Larkhall Lane (architect unknown)
  6. The1957 Sharon United Methodist Church, which will be demolished within the next 12 months (architect unknown).

Mid Center Salvage, a Charlotte company that restores Mid-Century and Danish Modern Furniture from the 1950s to the 1970s, is sponsoring the tour. The bus will stop there mid-day for a tour and a catered lunch.

After touring more houses, the group will go to IKEA for two hours of imgresshopping before departing for Raleigh.

Tickets are $119 per person and $99 for current members of NCMH’s Mod Squad. The price includes transportation, all admissions, breakfast, lunch, and snacks. For more details and to purchase tickets, go to http://www.ncmodernist.org/modshop.htm. Seating is limited so those interested should secure tickets very soon.

Charlotte residents may purchase tickets to the Mad About Modern Tour atwww.historiccharlotte.org.

redchair smAbout NC Modernist Houses:

North Carolina Modernist Houses (NCMH) is an award-winning, 501C3 nonprofit organizations established in 2007 and dedicated to documenting, preserving, and promoting Modernist residential design. The website is now the largest open digital archive for Modernist residential design in America. NCMH also hosts popular architecture events every month and frequent home tours, giving the public access to the most exciting residential architecture, past and present. These tours and events raise awareness and help preserve these “livable works of art” for future generations.

Paul Rudolph Heritage Foundation Taps NC Modernist Houses’ Masters Gallery

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NCMH becomes the official archive for Paul Rudolph’s residential projects.

(New York, NY) — The Paul Rudolph Heritage Foundation (PRHF) in New York City has designated North Carolina Modernist Houses’ online archive as the official index for the residential work by the former dean of the Yale School of Architecture who inspired a generation of architects.

As the official archive, North Carolina Modernist Houses (NCMH) will maintain and update the Paul Rudolph section of its archive as houses are sold, changed, or threatened. NCMH has modified the page to add the PRHF logo, link, and connection. The Heritage Foundation is now directing visitors to the NCMH website exclusively for Rudolph-designed houses.

Paul Rudolph houses
Rudolph’s 1953 “Umbrella House” on Lido Key.

“This is an innovative and groundbreaking partnership between an architecture foundation and our Masters Gallery archives,” said NCMH Executive Director George Smart. “We are honored to be the official site for Paul Rudolph’s residential work, which will allow the PRHF to devote more of its resources towards protecting and saving Rudolph’s non-residential buildings across America and the world.”

NCMH is an award-winning non-profit organization dedicated to archiving, preserving, and promoting modernist houses and those who design them. Along with North Carolina houses and designers, the NCMH website includes an extensive Masters Gallery, featuring the residential work of national and international Modernist masters, including Paul Rudolph. As a result, the NCMH archive is the largest open digital archive of its type in the nation.

Paul Rudolph (1918-1997) is best known in North Carolina for his 1972

Paul Rudolph
Paul Rudolph

design of the former Burroughs Wellcome headquarters in Research Triangle Park. In Florida, however, he was one of the leaders of the Sarasota Style (1941-1966) that gave Florida’s central west coast its vast collection of Modernist houses designed specifically for that region’s climate and terrain. Large sunshades, innovative ventilation systems, oversized sliding glass doors, floating staircases, and walls of jalousie windows dominated many of these houses, including Rudolph’s 1953 “Umbrella House” on Lido Key (pictured above). By the 1970s that house succumbed to decay and storms.

PRHF Director Mark Medoff commented on the decision to make NCMH Rudolph’s official residential archive:

“The Paul Rudolph Heritage Foundation’s mission is to actively promote the heritage and legacy of Paul Rudolph’s work. Especially as we approach the 100th anniversary of Paul Rudolph’s birth, we are striving to find the best ways to make our Foundation a primary reference on Paul Rudolph-designed iconic buildings. The collaboration with NCMH allows the PRHF and NCMH to share responsibility in maintaining the most up-to-date repository for information on Paul Rudolph’s worldwide projects.”

For more information on the PRHF, go to www.paulrudolphheritagefoundation.org.

For more information on NCMH, visit www.ncmodernist.org. To view the Rudolph archive specifically: www.ncmodernist.org/rudolph.

redchair smAbout NC Modernist Houses:

North Carolina Modernist Houses (NCMH) is an award-winning, 501C3 nonprofit organizations established in 2007 and dedicated to documenting, preserving, and promoting Modernist residential design. The website is now the largest open digital archive for Modernist residential design in America. NCMH also hosts popular architecture events every month and frequent home tours, giving the public access to the most exciting residential architecture, past and present. These tours and events raise awareness and help preserve these “livable works of art” for future generations.

About the Paul Rudolph Heritage Foundation:

The Paul Rudolph Heritage Foundation’s mission is to preserve and protect Paul Rudolph’s work, to educate the public about the legacy of his philosophy, and to provide a gathering space for discussion and camaraderie. The Foundation is located in the iconic Modulightor Building at 246 East 58th Street, New York, New York.

TRIG Modern Celebrates Mid-Century Designers During “Thirst4Architecture”

Trig Modern
Dutch designer Hella Jongerius’ reinterpretation of Alvar Aalto’s 400 and 401 Armchair for Artek.

April’s networking event for Modernist design enthusiasts

TRIG Modern, Raleigh’s premiere Modern furniture showroom at 328 West Jones Street, will present “An Evening with Alvar, Adrian, Milo and Vladimir” when the store hosts North Carolina Modernist Houses’ (NCMH’s) “Thirst4Architecture” networking happy hour on Thursday, April 16, from 6-8 p.m. A celebration of mid-century designers, the event is free and open to the public.

Emilie Huin of Coldwell Banker, a specialist in Modernist real estate throughout the Triangle, is the series sponsor for all 2014-2015 T4A happy hours, which provide opportunities for modern design enthusiasts to mix, mingle, and make strategic connections. The host business provides refreshments and other entertainment while attendees build relationships, create strategic alliances, and make new contacts.

For the April T4A, TRIG Modern’s owner, Bob Drake, will spotlight iconic mid-20th-century modern chairs designed by Finnish architect, sculptor and painter Alvar Aalto; American architect and furniture designer Adrian Pearsall; American furniture designer and 2009 Interior Design Hall of Fame inductee Vladimir Kagan; and North Carolina-based Thayer Coggins’ premiere designer Milo Baughman. Examples of each designer’s chairs will be on display in the showroom.

In keeping with the evening’s Mid-Century theme, Drake’s sister will cater the event, serving up classic 1950s and ‘60s dishes.

“The best thing about hosting a T4A event,” Drake said, “is being surrounded by a bunch of like-minded folks who appreciate Modern design.”

Opened in 2012, TRIG Modern is the only showroom and design service in downtown Raleigh that specializes in modern furniture and lighting in tandem with an eclectic blend of compatible furnishings and accessories, including Mid-20th Century items and a throw pillow collection that Drake designed himself.

“TRIG is a very different kind of showroom,” Drake said. “We combine both new and vintage furniture, kitchen and bath, lighting, original art and objects.”

Drake noted that the store’s new line of modern kitchen systems will also be on display that night. For more information on TRIG Modern, visit http://trigmodern.com.

NCMH is an award-winning non-profit organization dedicated to documenting, preserving, and promoting Modernist residential design across the state. For the dates and locations of future T4A events, go to www.ncmodernist.org/t4a.

redchair smAbout NC Modernist Houses:

North Carolina Modernist Houses (NCMH) is an award-winning, 501C3 nonprofit organizations established in 2007 and dedicated to documenting, preserving, and promoting Modernist residential design. The website is now the largest open digital archive for Modernist residential design in America. NCMH also hosts popular architecture events every month and frequent home tours, giving the public access to the most exciting residential architecture, past and present. These tours and events raise awareness and help preserve these “livable works of art” for future generations. For more information: www.ncmodernist.org.

NCMH Now Accepting Applications For Project BauHow 2015-2016

TMH logosm

North Carolina high schools that offer drafting classes to 9th and 10th graders are invited to apply for CAD computers.

North Carolina Modernist Houses (NCMH) announced today at the Wake County Schools Design Blitz that it is accepting applications from public high schools statewide for its 2015-2016 educational initiative, Project BauHow.

NCMH’s Project BauHow (Bauhaus + Know-how) supports high school education Project BauHowby providing desktop computer-aided design (CAD) computer systems and software to ninth and tenth graders in drafting classes in rural North Carolina.

Drafting classes are imperative for students who are interested in pursuing careers in architecture (among other professions). Yet, as NCMH Director George Smart explains, “Depending on their locations, up to 60 percent of North Carolina high school students are in families without the means to provide a CAD-level computer at home. For students who are interested in careers in architecture, or any kind of professional design, high school drafting classes simply can’t provide enough class time to achieve the proficiency, or portfolios, required for college. This severely limits their career opportunities, especially in rural areas.”

With these donated computer systems, drafting teachers can assign homework and students can practice CAD at home as much as they want.

Click here to view a video about Project BauHow from Douglas Bird High School in Fayetteville, a 2015 Project BauHow school.

Later, with class instruction, students will test their knowledge through an NCMH-sponsored design competition. The winner from each Project BauHow school receives a scholarship to North Carolina State University’s highly regarded summer Design Camp in Raleigh.

Project BauHow schools are selected based on location and need, availability of drafting classes for 9th and 10th grade students, and drafting teacher initiative. The drafting teacher determines which students will receive the CAD systems for home use. Assignments are submitted on USB sticks so students do not need Internet access at home.

The 2015-2016 application forms are available on the NCMH website at www.ncmodernist.org/bauhow. Click on “2016 School Application.” The deadline for applying is May 15, but Smart encourages interested high schools to apply as soon as possible.

For more information on Project BauHow, including past recipients, visit www.ncmodernist.org/bauhow.

redchair smAbout North Carolina Modernist Houses:  

North Carolina Modernist Houses (NCMH) is an award-winning, 501C3 nonprofit organizations established in 2007 and dedicated to documenting, preserving, and promoting Modernist residential design. The website is now the largest open digital archive for Modernist residential design in America. NCMH also hosts popular architecture events every month and frequent home tours, giving the public access to the most exciting residential architecture, past and present. These tours and events raise awareness and help preserve these “livable works of art.” For more information: www.ncmodernist.org.

Ambiente To Host February’s “Thirst4Architecture”

A networking event for fans of Modernist design.t4a-2015_sm

The Ambiente Collection, a showroom of contemporary and modernist furniture in Raleigh, will host the “Thirst4Architecture,” a networking event sponsored by North Carolina Modernist Houses (NCMH) and Emilie Huin/501 Realty, on Friday, February 27, from 6-8 p.m.

Free and open to the public, T4A events are opportunities for architects, artists, building managers, contractors, engineers, furniture dealers, realtors, and anyone else interested in Modernist residential design to connect and create strategic alliances in a casual environment. The hosts provide refreshments and other entertainment while introducing T4A participants to their businesses.
Ambiente started as a Scandinavian furniture store 30 years ago. Today, the store represents contemporary and modern furniture from over 200 manufacturers from around the world.
The Ambiente Collection is located at 10700 World Trade Boulevard off I-40 West in Raleigh (919.572.2870). For directions, visit www.ambientefurniture.com.

For more information on NCMH and the locations for future Thirst4Architecture events, visit www.ncmodernist.org.

About NC Modernist Houses:

North Carolina Modernist Houses (NCMH) is an award-winning, 501C3 nonprofit organizations established in 2007 and dedicated to documenting, preserving, and promoting Modernist residential design. The website is now the largest open digital archive for Modernist residential design in America. NCMH also hosts popular architecture events every month and frequent home tours, giving the public access to the most exciting residential architecture, past and present. These tours and events raise awareness and help preserve these “livable works of art” for future generations.

 

For more information: www.ncmodernist.org.

 

Find NCMH on Facebook.

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North Carolina Modernist Houses Announces 2015 Advisory Council

To support the non-profit’s ongoing programming and initiatives.ncmhlogo-1

North Carolina Modernist Houses (NCMH), the award-winning non-profit organization dedicated to documenting, preserving, and promoting Modernist residential design across the state, has announced the members of the 2015 NCMH Advisory Council.

Advisory Council members serve for one year as support for NCMH’s ongoing programming, including trips and homes tours, the architectural movie series, and the Thirst4Architecture networking events. The Council also advises on special initiatives, such as the NCMH Legal Defense Fund, which protects endangered Modernist houses; Project BauHow, which provides CAD systems ninth and tenth graders in architectural drafting classes across rural North Carolina; and the annual George Matsumoto Prize for excellence in recent North Carolina Modernist residential design.

“The Advisory Council is a multi-talented and diverse cross-section of the Modernist community: architecture, real estate, construction, law, financing, historic preservation, and other disciplines,” said NCMH founder and director George Smart. “The 2015 Council is a superb team, one of our best yet.”

The 2015 NCMH Advisory Council members are:

  • Chandra Hester, VMZINC
  • Emilie Huin, 501 Realty
  • Leon Meyers, LE Meyers Builders
  • Dr. Marsha Gordon, NCSU
  • Jeremy Farber, Maplewood Building Company
  • Kim Weiss, Blueplate PR
  • Laura Frushone, First Citizens Investor Services
  • Tim Simmons, NC State Historic Preservation Office
  • Craig Kerins, The Raleigh Architecture Company
  • Laurent de Comarmond, Little Diversified Architectural
  • William Dodge, Eco-Ficient, MBCI
  • Mack Paul, Morningstar Law Group
  • Mary Frances Wilson, Preservation North Carolina
  • Marty Martin, Martin Law Firm
  • Judy Colditz, HandLab
  • Frank Konhaus, KONTEK Systems
  • Adam Carrington, Carrington Electric
  • Ivy Simon, Palette and Parlor
  • Angela Roehl, Keller Williams Realty
  • Charlotte Brown Wainwright, Architectural Historian
  • Gwynn Thayer, NCSU Libraries Special Collections
  • Eric Davis, Surface 678 Landscape Architects

Service on the Advisory Council is for the calendar year 2015. For more information on NCMH, visit www.ncmodernist.org.

redchair smAbout North Carolina Modernist Houses:

North Carolina Modernist Houses (NCMH) is an award-winning, 501C3 nonprofit organizations established in 2007 and dedicated to documenting, preserving, and promoting Modernist residential design. The website is now the largest open digital archive for Modernist residential design in America. NCMH also hosts popular architecture events every month and frequent home tours, giving the public access to the most exciting residential architecture, past and present. Founder and director George Smart presents his signature talk, “Mayberry Modernism: North Carolina Modernist Legacy,” to preservation and architectural groups, realtors, engineers, and other associations across the state. These talks, tours, and events raise awareness and help preserve these “livable works of art” for future generations. For more information: www.ncmodernist.org.

 

North Carolina Modernist Houses Announces the 2015 Matsumoto Prize Jury

Nationally known architects to judge annual Modernist house competitionncmhlogo-1

North Carolina Modernist Houses (NCMH), the award-winning non-profit organization dedicated to documenting, preserving, and promoting Modernist residential design across the state, has announced the 2015 George Matsumoto Prize Jury.

The 2015 jury includes MacArthur Fellow Jeanne Gang, FAIA, Studio Gang Architects, Chicago; Harry Bates, Bates Masi Architects, Sag Harbor, New York; Eric Gartner, AIA, SG Architects, New York; Peter Gluck, Gluck+, New York; Bev Thorne, the last living architect to have participated in Arts & Architecture‘s famous Case Study Houses, Oakland; and Honorary Chair George Matsumoto, FAIA.

Now in its fourth year, the Matsumoto Prize honors George Matsumoto, a founding faculty member of North Carolina State University’s School of Design (now College of Design) and architect of some of the state’s best-known and historically significant Modernist houses.

The Matsumoto Prize is a unique awards program. It is the only juried architecture competition in North Carolina that focuses solely on Modernist houses, provides financial awards, involves a national jury of Modernist architects, offers the opportunity for public voting, and connects to a major architectural archive.  Residential architects and designers entering the competition can be from anywhere but their houses must be in North Carolina.

“The Prize powerfully engages the greater community to be involved with the architecture they love,” said NCMH Executive Director George Smart. “The competition publicly showcases a new generation of outstanding Modernist architects and houses, promoting new talent and providing motivating honors and incentives in our state.”

The call for submissions will be announced in 2015. For more information on the 2015 Matsumoto Prize, visit http://www.ncmodernist.org/prize2015. To see past winners, go to http://www.ncmodernist.org/matsumotoprize.htm.

redchairAbout North Carolina Modernist Houses:

North Carolina Modernist Houses (NCMH) is an award-winning 501C3 nonprofit established in 2007 and dedicated to documenting, preserving, and promoting Modernist residential design. The website is the largest open digital archive for Modernist residential design in America. NCMH also hosts popular architecture events every month, giving the public access to the most exciting residential architecture, past and present. Its many homes tours and events raise awareness and help preserve these “livable works of art” for future generations. For more information: www.ncmodernist.org.

 

 

 

 

“Appetite4Architecture” Dinner Features Special Guest Frank Harmon

The first in a series of dinners sponsored by Triangle Modernist Houses.

Frank Harmon, FAIA

January 18, 2012 (Raleigh, NC) – Frank Harmon FAIA, founder and principal of the award-winning firm Frank Harmon Architect PA in Raleigh, will be a featured guest at the first 2012 “Appetite4Architecture” dinner on Tuesday, January 31, beginning at 6:30 p.m. in 18 Seaboard restaurant in Raleigh.

Now in its third year, “Appetite4Architecture” dinners are sponsored by Triangle Modernist Houses (TMH), an award-winning, non-profit organization dedicated to documenting, preserving and promoting Modernist residential design. The purpose of the dinners is to give the general public a chance to dine with, and talk with, some of the Triangle area’s finest architects in a relaxed, informal setting.

Frank Harmon is well known for modern, innovative, sustainable and regionally appropriate architecture of all types, including houses. Among his best known, award-winning residential designs are:

  • The Taylor Vacation House in the Bahamas, which is included in the book Tropical Modernism and was featured in an exhibit in the National Building Museum in Washington, D.C., among many other accolades.
  • The Strickland-Ferris Residence in Raleigh, which has been featured in a number of architectural magazines and received both Custom Home and Wood Design awards.
  • The Low Country Residence in Mount Pleasant, SC, which also received a Custom Home Design Award and a national AIA Housing Award.
  • And the own modern home and gardens he shares with his wife, landscape architect Judy Harmon, in Raleigh, which were featured in Sarah Susanka’s book Outside The Not-So-Big House.

In 2011, Frank Harmon was included in Residential Architect magazine’s “RA 50: A Short List of Architects We Love,” and in 2005 his firm received the magazine’s “Top Firm of the Year” honor. He has been profiled in Dwell magazine and Architectural Record, and he has been a featured guest on American Public Media’s “The Story” with Dick Gordon.

Joining Harmon for TMH’s inaugural 2012 “A4A” dinner will be Durham architect Ellen Cassilly, AIA, who worked in Harmon’s firm before founding her own firm Ellen Cassilly Architect Inc., and Randy Lanou, president of BuildSense/Studio B Architecture, also in Durham. Dona Aguayo of Go Realty is co-sponsoring the January 31 dinner.

The TMH “A4A” dinners are all held at 18 Seaboard, 18 Seaboard Avenue, No. 100, Raleigh, NC 27604. The dinners include three courses from a preselected menu (vegetarian options are available) plus coffee, water, tea, tax, and gratuity. Price per person is $53. Tickets are available at www.trianglemodernisthouses.com/a4a. Payments are nonrefundable except for event cancellation. All proceeds benefit TMH’s ongoing documentation, preservation, and house tours programs. For more information on TMH call George Smart, 919-740-8407 or visit www.trianglemodernisthouses.com.

For more information on Frank Harmon, visit www.frankharmon.com.

About Frank Harmon, FAIA:

Frank Harmon, FAIA, is principal Frank Harmon Architect PA, and Professor in Practice at North Carolina State University’s College of Design. His work has been featured in numerous books, journals and magazines, including Dwell, Architect, Architectural Record, Arch Daily.com, and Residential Architect. A frequent lecturer on modern, sustainable, regionally appropriate architecture, he serves on design awards juries across the nation. For more information, visit www.frankharmon.com.

The House That Steve Jobs Grew Up In, And How It Shaped Apple

Essay and sketches by Frank Harmon, FAIA 

“We shape our buildings, and afterwards our buildings shape us,” Winston Churchill said, and perhaps no place has the power to shape us like the place where we grow up.

Lyndon Johnson was born in the hardscrabble and desperately poor Hill Country of Texas. His life and political legacy were shaped by the threadbare surroundings of his childhood.

Steve Jobs grew up in a small, modern house in Mountain View, California. So important was the house that he took his biographer, Walter Isaacson, there to show him the many ingenious details of its design — like the radiant floor and the open plan and windows that brought the outdoors in. It’s nice to think that the man many call a genius grew up in a house with ingenious details.

Joseph Eichler, a California developer noted for bringing good design to the mass housing market, built Jobs’ childhood home. Eichler homes were airy and modern in comparison to most of the mass-produced, middle-class, postwar homes being built in the 1950s. Eichler believed that people of modest means could have beautiful things.

Including the modest family who adopted Steve Jobs.

The clean elegance of the Eichler home, available to everyone, was the original vision for Apple, according to Jobs. “That’s what we tried to do with the first Mac,” he recalled. “That’s what we did with the iPod.”

Paul Jobs made a place on his garage workbench so his young son could work beside him. Outside he built a fence around their Eichler home, crafting the back of the fence to look as good as the front. Steve Jobs never forgot that lesson, and would insist that every element of his Apple products should be beautiful, not just on the outside but even on the inside. “But no one will see it,” his engineers groaned when he insisted on a beautiful hidden circuit board. “But I will!” Jobs replied.

Apple stores were conceived of and meticulously supervised by Steve Jobs. From the open plan to the glass stairs, no detail was unimportant. They are the 21st century embodiment of Paul Jobs’ workbench in Mountain View. We are used to thinking that the digital world is placeless, but in the digital world of Jobs, place mattered.

A student of Zen, Jobs absorbed the belief of Dogen Zenji, a Zen master who wrote, “Whoever told people that ‘mind’ means thoughts opinions, ideas, and concepts? Mind means trees, fence posts, tiles, and grasses.” And, we might add, IPods, workbenches, and Eichler homes.

Like Eichler, Jobs brought beauty to ordinary things. He shaped the iPod, the iPhone, and the iPad. Now they shape us.