LongHouse Reserve’s Winter Benefit Honored Toshiko Mori & Jamie Carpenter

LongHouse Reserve’s Winter Benefit honored architects Toshiko Mori and Jamie Carpenter, atop the Hearst Tower last Thursday night. The evening began with cocktails in the East Rooms of the 44th floor with superb views of the city. Welcoming guests, executive director of LongHouse, Matko Tomicic, joked: “I was thinking about changing the title of the Benefit from winter to spring. I guess winter is over, thank god!”

Longhouse founder, Jack Lenor Larsen, spoke fondly of architect Jamie Carpenter, who designed the Israel Museum: “He was asked to design a real museum, of many buildings, beautifully orchestrated, and interestingly put together. It became a museum that you must visit soon. Jerusalem seems more distant than Europe or Japan. And it’s such a handsome city built over thousands of years over the same golden stone… “ James Snyder, director emeritus of the Israel Museum, recalled, “We invited Jamie to Jerusalem late in winter,” he said. “It happened to be a kind of biblical weather weekend. The sky was intense blue, then there were cumulus clouds, then it snowed, then it rained, then hail. Jamie, whose sensibilities are all about light, got to experience every possible condition.” Jamie Carpenter added, “Glass celebrates nature in many different ways. I’m interested in the characteristics of glass which are a little more abstract and complex than simply transparency. It can communicate information around us.”

Dianne Benson, Chairman of the Board, said, “One of the most wonderful aspects of my association with LongHouse and Jack is that I have learned that architecture is not just about a building, or wood, or materials, it’s a kind of magic that Jack has introduced us all to.” Paul Goldberger joked, “We are celebrating LongHouse in tall house.” He then said, “I have long admired Toshiko Mori’s work. Her architecture simultaneously delights with the new, and, yet, at the same time, feels comfortable and almost familiar.” In accepting her award, Toshiko Mori said, “I have known LongHouse for a very long time since I was a student. Therefore, it is very close to me and it’s very interesting.” She also revealed how she had once interviewed Jamie Carpenter for a job: “As Jamie likes to joke, he didn’t get the job but he did get a wife.”

Guests included: Arthur and Diane Abbey, Jacqueline Brody, Richard De Rose, Sherri Donghia, Lee Freund, Sean Kelly, Christopher Latham, Mark and Elizabeth Levine, Eileen O’Kane Kornreich, Sandy and Steve Perlbinder, Lee Skolnick, James Snyder, Michael Steinberg, and Neda Young.