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The Modern Estate

Stuart Disston, AIA, one of three partners at Austin Patterson Disston Architects, has served as the project architect and manager on many residential, commercial, interiors, and institutional projects in the tristate area. His designs for residences in Quogue, Lyme, New Canaan, Westport, and Rowayton have won his firm awards from AIA Connecticut, a statewide chapter of the American Institute of Architects. Stuart’s work on a Shingle Style residence (he has long been an admirer of that architectural style—as his article “Classic American Shingle”, on page 106, reflects) recently earned Austin Patterson Disston an AIA design award. The award includes a statement from jury member Terence Riley, curator of architecture at the Museum of Modern Art, in New York, that aptly describes the firm’s philosophy: “At a moment when many architects are interested in history, this is a rare house to hit a note of authenticity and not simply stylistic revival. The architect knows the traditional language of architecture and deploys it quite well, and also knows when to slow down.”

Charles F. Hilton, a partner at Hilton-VanderHorn Architects, based in Greenwich, Connecticut, graduated from the Pennsylvania State University with distinction in 1988. An avid boater and fisherman with a lifelong appreciation of fine traditional architecture, Charles has designed a wide variety of traditional waterfront residences, in styles ranging from Cabin to Shingle to Georgian to Mediterranean, not only in Fairfield and Westchester counties but across the northeastern United States. See his article entiltled ‘Getting Your Feet Wet” on page 96, warning of the complexities that homeowners will face if they decide to build on the waterfront. His firm's work has been featured on HGTV and in two brand-new books: Dream Home: Metro New York (Panache Partners LLC) and Shingle Style Houses: Past and Present (Schiffer Publishing).

Terry Sullivan trained at the renowned interior design firm Parish-Hadley. Prior to that, she had received a B.A. in interior design and decorative arts and had completed a Decorative Arts and Architecture program in Paris with the Parsons School of Design. She now collaborates with architects, contractors, antiquarians, and craftsmen to create unique custom interiors for her varied clients. She has participated as a designer in several decorator show houses, including the Greenwich Designer Show House, sponsored by the Junior League, and the “Rooms with a View” Show House, in Southport, chaired by Albert Hadley. She often custom-designs wallpapers, fabrics, carpets, and upholstery for her clients; her aim is to create warm, lovely, contemplative rooms for them to enjoy. To her article “The Beauty of Life” on page 51, Terry brings her love of the old gardens, Old Master drawings, natural fabrics, and beautiful craftsmanship.

For 20 years, Taconic Builders, a firm with offices in Westchester County, New York City, Long Island, East Hampton, and Seattle, Washington, has been building dream homes and renovating landmark buildings for an elite group of architects and homeowners. The company’s president, Vincent Tyer, who holds a master’s degree in business administration from New York University and has had management experience at an international conglomerate, joined the firm in 2000. Under his leadership, revenues have increased from $5 million to more than $90 million a year and the staff has expanded from 12 to more than 150. Those staffers know where to find beautiful specialty materials (granite, marble, wood, tile) and superior craftspeople (wood carvers, metalworkers, joiners, stonemasons) wherever in the world they happen to be. His article, “Sources of Enhancement,” on page 43, offers our readers a primer on how they, too, can track these artisans down.

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