2017 Architectural Dinner

The Vanna Venturi House by Robert Venturi and the Margaret Esherick House Louis Kahn

An exclusive evening at two landmark homes

Saturday, September 23, 2017
Chestnut Hill, Philadelphia

INTIMATELY EXPERIENCE TWO OF PHILADELPHIA’S MOST ARCHITECTURALLY SIGNIFICANT 20TH CENTURY RESIDENCES.

Please join us for an elegant evening at the Vanna Venturi House designed by Robert Venturi and the Margaret Esherick House designed by Louis I. Kahn, located only a half-block away from each other in Chestnut Hill. This unique evening – never before done – showcases the work of Philadelphia’s own world-class architects in the setting for which they were designed, as homes.

6:00 – 7:00 pm Vanna Venturi House

Champagne and delectables at the Vanna Venturi House with new owner, David Lockard. Explore both the interior and exterior of this groundbreaking design by Robert Venturi, one of the most original talents in contemporary architecture.

7:00 – 9:00 pm Margaret Esherick House

The elegant evening continues with sophisticated modern fare at the Margaret Esherick House, hosted by owners Dan Macey and Paul Savidge. Enjoy cocktails, entertainment, a silent auction, and fine wine generously donated by Moore Brothers and poured by Greg Moore, former Sommelier and General Manager of the celebrated Le Bec-Fin. Architect-inspired dishes will be crafted by culinary artist, Dan Macey, a food historian and celebrity food stylist. Introductions to the houses will be led by the owners along with two architectural scholars: David B. Brownlee, FSAH, historian of modern architecture and Shapiro-Weitzenhoffer Professor of the History of Art, University of Pennsylvania; and William Whitaker, Curator and Collections Manager of the Architectural Archives, Penn School of Design.

$500 Non Members
$350 Members

Limited Availability – Please call 215-546-1146 x.3 to inquire about tickets

These intimate settings allow for only a limited number of guests to enjoy the evening. Registration is required. Further details and home addresses will be provided upon confirmation of attendance. Garden attire, no heels please.


Thank you to our hosts for their gracious hospitality

  • Dan Macey and Paul Savidge
  • David Lockard

Thank you to the members of the planning committee

  • David Brownlee
  • John Carr
  • Dan Macey

Thank you to our generous sponsors

  • Bruce E. Brooks & Associates
  • Hansell Construction, Inc.
  • John Milner Architects, Inc.
  • Keast & Hood
  • Looney Ricks Kiss
  • Materials Conservation Co., LLC
  • Moore Brothers Wine Company
  • Rago Arts and Auction Center

Vanna Venturi House

Designed by Robert Venturi

When American architect Robert Venturi began to design a house for his mother, Vanna, in the late 1950s, he boldly replaced the generic vocabulary of modernism with the charmingly old-fashioned symbols of the “home”– a big chimney, sheltering roof, and welcoming doorway. Although apparently simple, even childlike in its conception, the Mother’s House was also “complex and contradictory” in the spirit of the manifesto that Venturi was then writing. The design was hugely influential, and it came to be seen as the first embodiment of Post-modernism, although that generalization is complex and contradictory, too.


Margaret Esherick House

Designed by Louis I. Kahn

Evincing the heroic unity of form and structure that is also visible in Louis I. Kahn’s other landmark commissions, the Margaret Esherick House (1959-61) is one of only nine homes that he designed. Monumental in its geometry, the house is gentle and humane in its details, and includes a stunning kitchen crafted by famed sculptor and woodworker Wharton Esherick, Margaret’s uncle. The homeowners’ efforts in preservation and conservation have been recognized nationally by Docomomo US and locally by the Preservation Alliance for Greater Philadelphia. It is a model for stewardship and preservation.


All proceeds from this fundraising event support the work and mission of the Preservation Alliance for Greater Philadelphia. Contact Susan Matyas at 215-546-1146 x3 or susan@preservationalliance.com for further information.