PaperCity Magazine

March 2020- Houston

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86 82 to become Space City, Walsh strode in 1955, a confi dent, svelte, quick-witted, and stylish figure with a penchant for Balenciaga and Christian Dior, a charismatic woman newly married to a man who would become a top Texas lawyer, William Frederic Walsh, who became partner in Percy Foreman's fi rm. Walsh exercised design control over 100-plus major projects encompassing boardrooms, trading floors, lobbies, Lear jets, and C suites. All the while her eye was on the common man and what Good Design For Everyone, as she called it, could bring. While the commissions and often the corporations for which they were created are no longer extant, the cult of Walsh lives on. She's being rediscovered for her big ideas about modern design, sense of classicism and proportion, and ability to create interiors in a new design language, working with signature elements from her toolbox — Knoll furniture was always paramount, as well as custom fabrications from her go-to Houston source, Brochsteins. It's diffi cult to gain a sense of Walsh's genius, as her signature projects have not survived or are no longer in their original form: the interiors for the Houston Public Library Jesse H. Jones Building and the Kinkaid School Library, M.D. Anderson Hospital (before Cancer Center was part of its name) and Methodist Hospital, the University of Houston Student Center and Rice's Student Memorial Center, the Schlumberger headquarters and Gulf Oil Chemicals, and every bank of signifi cance within the region were all the designer's calling cards. However, one of two fully intact Walsh interiors is still in existence — and it's a rare residential commission that the designer created for a couple who were close friends, Susan and Raymond Brochstein (whose name graces Rice's civically minded Brochstein Pavilion). After four decades, the modestly private couple has opened their home and its Sally Walsh-designed interiors for PaperCity. Our feature fortuitously coincides with renewed interest in the designer's work: the creation of the public philanthropic opportunity of the Sally Walsh Endowed Professorship and Student Scholarships at the University of Houston Gerald D. Hines College of Architecture and Design, and the upcoming publication of a defi nite volume on Walsh, being written by Alan Bruton. I n the beginning was the house. It took a triad of architects to bring it to fruition in 1974 — the Rice mafi a. Raymond Brochstein was the original architect; he and his wife, Susan, had owned the forested acre in West Houston (now close-in Memorial) before they could afford to design a home. She sensibly persuaded him to keep the land until that day came, and it did. When struggling with the fi nal design, Brochstein Left: Wooden hat forms collected by the Brochsteins during a buying trip in France; Walsh designed their stands and arranged them as Surrealist sculpture. Eleanor Le Maire marquetry cube table fabricated at Brochsteins. L.A. artist Charles Arnoldi's dramatic painting, circa 1980s, meticulously sited in the dining area by Walsh. Right: Brazilian rosewood-and-chrome dining table and credenza by Brochsteins attest to the company's command of wood. Mies van der Rohe Cantilever chairs. Charles Mary Kubricht leaf image. Post-modern lamp with movable acrylic components chosen by Walsh. Samovar from Raymond's maternal grandmother brought from Poland to Wharton, Texas in 1903.

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