April 23, 2013 Mid-Century Modern

1951 Arthur Keyes-Designed MCM in Forest Hills – $2.495 Million

Keyes-designed House

Arthur Keyes was one of D.C.’s leading modernist architects. He was the constant in the various award-winning architecture firm: Keyes, Smith, Satterlee, and Lethbridge, which designed Holmes Run Acres;  Keyes, Lethbridge and Condon, which designed Carderock Spring in Bethesda and Tiber Island in Southwest; and eventually Keyes Condon Florance. Keyes died last June at the the age of 95.

“A seminal moment in his design vision came when Mr. Keyes moved to Mr. Wright’s Taliesin East to study in the studio and fields of the American master of prairie-style architecture,” reads the obituary in his hometown Rutland (Vt.) Herald. “Mr. Keyes’ Vermont upbringing, founded in pragmatism, clashed with the cult-like living he found under Mr. Wright. In 1939, he was drawn to the modernist teachings at Harvard University. Known for its own American foundationalism, the University had oddly named Marcel Breuer, of Bauhaus fame, to head its Harvard School of Design. There Mr. Keyes formed his own vision and graduated with a Master’s in Architecture in 1941.”

Keyes’ own home on 31st Steet in Massachusetts Avenue Heights, which was staged for sale by Doug Meyers of Modern Mobler, is currently under contract.  Another one of Keyes’ custom designs in the city is currently listed for $2.495 million. It is tucked away on three-quarters of an acre in Forest Hills.