The few interior photos included in the listing of William F. Stern’s house at the corner of Milford and Mt. Vernon show the 1990 structure stripped of most of its furnishings — but with much of its famed artwork still on the walls. Are those paintings museum-quality, though? Certifiably, it turns out: Stern, who passed away a year ago from pancreatic cancer, willed the house and its artwork to the Menil Collection. The Menil is accepting all the art into its collection, but put the house on the market last month — with an asking price of $1.475 million.
Stern, a former Menil trustee, was the architect in charge of the multi-year restoration of the Menils’ own house at 3363 San Felipe, an early design by Phillip Johnson. Stern also designed the 1997 renovation of the Contemporary Arts Museum at the corner of Montrose and Bissonnet, a quarter-mile southeast from his own home. Stern designed the house at 1202 Milford in the late 1980s, with the assistance of the proprietor of this juicy establishment.
The 2-bedroom, 2-1/2-bath home mixed references to both the then-new Menil Collection and the bungalows that surrounded it in a 3-story design; inside, carefully controlled lighting and a central stair gave Stern and visitors a chance to tour his growing collection of modern paintings. A colorful 3-story interior wall drawing designed by Sol Lewitt for the 30-ft.-tall front wall of Stern’s living room is being painted over by the Menil before the sale, but the museum is accepting Lewitt’s instructions into its collection.
- 1202 Milford St. [HAR]
- William Stern House [Stern and Bucek]
- Noted architect’s home once filled with art, including a now “vanished” Sol LeWitt, is for sale [Culturemap]
- Previously on Swamplot: William F. Stern, 1947—2013