House & Home

Marcel Breuer: Mission Hills home a rare Midwest build

Marcel Breuer
Marcel Breuer

Marcel Breuer (1902-1981)

Born in Hungary, Marcel Breuer was one of the 20th century’s best-known modernist architects and furniture designers.

Over the course of his career, the Bauhaus-trained Breuer designed more than 100 buildings across the country and developed the concept of the binuclear house, which features separate wings for bedrooms and living and dining areas, as well as a butterfly roof.

His best-known project is the Whitney Museum of Art in New York, which was considered an example of brutalist architecture, employing raw concrete.

Breuer was also a well-known furniture designer. He was hailed as a prodigy for creating the Wassily Chair, named for artist Wassily Kandinsky, when he was only 23 years old. Inspired by the handlebars on his bike, Breuer fashioned a basic, tubular chair that featured a bent steel frame and a progressive style that is still produced today.

In 1954, Breuer built the Snower Residence in Mission Hills, modeled after his own home, which was constructed in 1947 in New Canaan, Conn. The Snower Residence may be one of only two homes Breuer constructed west of the Mississippi River, and it is likely one of the only existing Breuer homes that remains largely true to its original design.