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Patricia and Henry C. Beck Jr. House

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1964, Philip Johnson; 2009 rehabilitated, Bodron+Fruit; 2010 landscape, Reed Hilderbrand. 10210 Strait Ln.

The Beck House is one of Johnson’s lesser-known works. The only published documentation was by biographer Frank Welch in Philip Johnson & Texas (2000), which included a plan, photographs, and insights into the Becks’ (and Dallas’s) cultural milieu as only Welch could chronicle. The reason for Johnson’s silence about the house can only be guessed, since he was not usually shy of publicity.

Two tiers of slender arches on precast concrete columns envelop the advancing and receding blocks of the two-story house like a peripteral temple, similar to the Amon Carter Museum (FW32) of 1961 in Fort Worth. The central atrium has two sweeping bronze-and-stainless-steel staircases modeled after those by Johnson at the Four Seasons restaurant in New York City. The dining room was the most distinctive space in the house with its plaster handkerchief vaults replicated from Johnson’s Guest House.

The original landscape scheme by Zion and Breen Associates was never fully implemented. The house was set on a level podium, raised above and isolated from the rough growth on the banks of Bachman Branch below. The 2010 landscape design terraced the banks with concrete edges to control erosion and protect tree root systems. Across the stream, approached by a wooden causeway, is a new pool and pavilion.

Writing Credits

Gerald Moorhead et al.


What's Nearby


Gerald Moorhead et al., "Patricia and Henry C. Beck Jr. House", [Dallas, Texas], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of Texas

Buildings of Texas: East, North Central, Panhandle and South Plains, and West, Gerald Moorhead and contributors. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2019, 173-173.

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