Architecturally Significant Homes


Realtor Douglas Newby Specializes in Modern Homes

Instinctively I am attracted to the tenets of modernism expressed in all ages and styles of modern homes.

The first modern homes in Dallas were built in 1905. I love the sweeping eaves and clean horizontal lines of these Sullivanesque and Frank Lloyd Wright influenced modern homes reflecting an open, forward thinking, stream-lined city in contrast to San Fransisco, a closed and ornamental city of the same age.

While every other real estate agent and companies were promoting the Tudor cottages of the M streets in University Park I helped clients buy and sell over two hundred of these early modern homes in Munger Place and Swiss Avenue. These included a home designed by Charles Barglebaugh who worked in the studio of Frank Lloyd Wright and homes designed by modern architectural firms like Lang & Witchell and C.D. Hill.

Dallas Has the Best Collections of Modern Homes in the Country, Texas Modern Homes Originated in Dallas in 1932

Another passion of mine are the Texas Modern homes designed by architects David Williams and O'Neill Ford who expressed the classical modernism of the classical European modern architects like Le Corbusier, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, and Karl Moser with the artisanship and indigenous qualities of Texas.

Texas modern homes were a forgotten treasure until the 1990s, when I created a city-wide committee of the most passionate and knowledgeable people of art, architecture, and history in Dallas to identify the significant modern homes of every decade of the twentieth century.

David Williams, FAIA an O'Neill Ford, FAIA set out to design homes just as modern as those found in Europe, but still embraced Texas. While these homes were largely ignored, I thought they were magic. I was drawn to their continuous walls that extended to the outside porches and verandas, creating indoor and outdoor rooms of equal importance. Their architectural orientation on the site captured the winter light and the shaded the summer sun. Texas modern homes were often found on the best sites overlooking creeks and beautiful topography as this was a special priority for modernists like architect O'Neill Ford and Arch Swank, FAIA and other modernists.

The Early Texas Modern Architects Have Inspired the Next Two Generations of Dallas Modern Architects

Many of the Dallas architects who worked with or were inspired by O'Neill Ford have gone on to win national awards including the firm, Lake|Flato, who has been named the national AIA firm of the year. My clients enjoy these homes and their influence on modern design. When we look at modern homes we can see that the purest modern homes are rooted in modern precedent. My clients are not interested in homes that are just an assemblage of modern fixtures and finishes accumulated at modern trade shows.

Mid-Century Modern Homes Have Come of Age

My first introduction to mid-century modern homes was visiting my grandparents in their architect designed 1952 mid-century modern home they had built. My memory is vivid of the walls of glass, corner windows, open rooms, and several rooms opening to the expansive terrace where I played for hours.

There's a whole generation obsessed with design who have had a life long passion for mid-century modern homes. In college a mid-century lamp or inexpensive mid-century artifact might be purchased. Early in the careers of mid-century lovers, a mid-century piece of furniture might be acquired. Now with greater resources, these aesthetically sophisticated buyers are purchasing mid-century homes.

Looking for a Mid-Century Homes is Like a Treasure Hunt

Some of the mid-century homes are disguised by minor modifications, some are on hidden streets in less well-known neighborhoods. It has brought me great joy when I've helped my friends and clients find and buy small architect designed mid-century homes or purchase modern homes by internationally recognized mid-century architects. I also like helping buyers find affordable modern homes or even rather generic 1950s homes that have the architectural bones to make a very cool modern statement.

Modern Homes from the 1970s Are Being Reinterpreted and Transformed

Some of the coolest modern homes and many of the modern homes which represent the greatest value are those designed in the 1970s. They retain the Dean Martin modern chic of the 1960s, and are extending the modern vibe of the 1970s. The spaces are expansive, rooms open up to each other, and there are walls of windows. These modern homes are also usually on large lots which are great for families. Yes, 1970s modern houses can also have a Brady Bunch appeal. Replacing the old bank of windows with an entire wall of floor-to-ceiling stacked sliding doors, keeping the coolest fixtures, and adding twenty-first century elements and technology create a twenty-first century modern home with a groovy vibe. I love helping families with children in private schools find these homes that are modern and yet perfect for children and parties.

Dallas Modern Homes Take the Spotlight in the 1990s

Dallas modern architects and international modern architects designed modern homes in Dallas that began to take center stage in the 1990s. Modern Dallas and National architects have continued to design spectacular modern homes every year through the end of the twentieth century until today. I enjoy discussing and helping my clients better understand the work of each of the talented modern architects that work in Dallas. My role is to provide insights on a topic in which you're already knowledgeable and passionate.

Douglas Newby is the Nation's #1 Realtor for Architecturally Significant Properties. Call Email