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September 30, 2009 Richard Neutra

Tour of Richard Neutra’s Rice House in Richmond

Here’s a slideshow of images I took during the tour of Neutra’s Rice House in Richmond hosted by Modern Richmond. Located here, the 1964 house was designed by Richard Neutra for Ambassador Walter Rice, a top Reynolds Metals Corp. executive, and his wife, Inger, a native of Denmark who still lives in Richmond. The only International Style home in Richmond, the house is perched 110-feet above the James River on a man-made 12-acre island overlooking Williams Dam.

Patrick Farley, a Richmond-based architect who led the tour, said the Rices wanted to build a house that was very different from the typical “Williamsburg-style” homes in Richmond. The 6,000 square foot house is made of marble from Georgia and is stretched out along a granite ridge running parallel to the river. Farley said once the Rices convinced Neutra to actually come to Richmond to the site, Neutra, taking in the view of the river, said the site was the most beautiful in the world and decided to take a rare commission on the East Coast. The Rices donated the home to the Science Museum of Virginia Foundation in the 1996, which is currently examining how best to restore and care for the home. Read more about the history of the house in the nomination to the National Register of Historic Places.

As always, just a reminder that we have our own Neutra-designed home here in D.C.

Neutra designed the 1968 house for Ann and Donald Brown in a mere minutes once he saw the wooded lot overlooking Rock Creek Park. The house is located here and you can see professional pictures here taken by Michael K. Wilkinson.