PaperCity Magazine

March 2020- Houston

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Page 84 of 131

83 enlisted two Rice professors, William T. Cannady and his own mentor, Anderson Todd. Within a week, they had the final working plan. Susan recalls Raymond coming home and saying, "They put us in a shoebox, and it works." The stark white stucco home — Todd mixed marble dust into the final coat of stucco, and there's been no need to paint it since — in its sylvan setting was referred to as the Tree House. Its 75-foot long, two-story Grand Hall, informed by a bank of windows lining its back deck bring the deciduous trees, set upon a shallow ravine, into the field of vision of anyone who sits in the first-floor living space. The Brochstein House went on to win the Texas Architecture Honor Award in 1975 and was published the following year in Texas Architect, the regional magazine for the AIA. Decades later, it received the AIA's 25-year award in 1999. The Brochsteins, who recently celebrated 60 years of marriage, raised their family here. Susan Brochstein, who grew up in Mississippi and was Tulane- educated, was the daughter of a rabbi who railed against segregation and his polymath wife, whose intellectual curiosity would rub off on her daughter. Raymond Brochstein, FAIA, is a first- generation American and scion of the 85-year-old Brochsteins; now retired (daughter Deborah Brochstein and son-in-law Steven Hecht are at the helm now), he took Brochsteins from a regional firm for fine woodworking to one where he routinely received calls from architects such as Richard Meier — and ended up crafting interiors for the architect's billion-dollar Getty Museum. It was Alan Bruton, professor and director of interior architecture at UH, who introduced us to the Brochsteins and thus, the Brochstein House. Bruton's book on Sally Walsh, which is in the research phase, is filled with the recollections of the Brochsteins, who were among Walsh's closest friends, as well as many other collaborators, clients, colleagues, friends, and the family of Walsh. Raymond describes Walsh as an "incredible, brilliant person" who arrived like a thunderbolt. It was 1972. "I met Sally through Magruder Wingfield, who was also a partner in S. I. Morris' firm. Sally was the first female partner there — hired to lead its interior architecture department. She designed the first Transco Offices that Hines built, before Transco Tower, with an open plan — the cabinets were all built by Haworth I think, and they were (continued) A Walsh tablescape, unchanged since the 1980s, with sleigh bells from her Sioux Falls childhood, a gift to the homeowners, a ceramic sculpture, and turned-wood bowl. Custom side table by Brochsteins. "Sally is very much here," says Raymond of these interiors. A sculpture by Rice architect Jim Weiner, Witch's Hat, 1972.

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