Modern House by Allen Kirsch and Sharif Munir

Case Study-inspired house by Sharif Munir and Allen Kirsch
Circle sculpture by Juanluis Gonzalez
Case Goods . . . Interior designer Allen Kirsch, homebuilder Mickey Munir and architect Vernon Berry teamed up to build this contemporary house for art collectors Pam and Phil Baker in Preston Hollow. Kirsch is known for his modern interiors, but this was Munir's first modern project, he says. He's itching to do more. For Berry, who has worked as an architect for Sharif Munir since 1978, inspiration for the house came from the great mid-century Case Study houses in California where he once lived. "They weren't just white boxes, they were comfortable houses made from rich materials," such as the rift-cut white oak, limestone, and pale brick selected for the Baker's house.

The dining room was designed to precisely accommodate the width of a large antique Chinese buffet and custom Emperador table that seats 12. Encaustic by Brad Ellis.

Keeping in mind the Baker's desire to buy large art pieces, Berry and Kirsch designed walls to hold big art works, and interior and exterior vistas to showcase sculptures that hadn't yet been purchased. Top left, the Bakers commissioned a Tree of Life sculpture in red by Shane Pennington for a niche in the dining room. Top right, A figurative sculpture by Deborah Ballard stands behind a glass wall separating the hall from an exterior courtyard.

Detail of Shane Pennington's Tree of Life includes tiny people along its roots

The breakfast room is dominated by a George Nelson pendant and Knoll Saarinen table, both from Design within Reach

An elegant open, glass stairwell leads to a second floor wing designed for the Baker's grown daughter to use when she visits. Custom glass doors, designed by Vernon Berry, are strong enough to withstand hurricane winds. 

At left, Roger Winter's portraits line the walkway under the stairs. Robert Jessup's large scale painting hangs in the entry. At right, the dress wall sculpture is by New Mexico artist Nancy Youdelman

A quartet of Mies van der Rohe Barcelona chairs create a simple seating area around a Milo Baughman coffee table; custom rift-cut white oak cabinets hold an Asian artifact of a dragon; Painting by Margaret Fitzgerald.

In the living room, Allen Kirsch designed custom sofas manufactured by Kisabeth Furniture with Travers fabric. At right, James Williams wood sculpture and painting by Margaret Fitzgerald.

Pam Baker's favorite color, red, was used sparingly throughout the house, including on this custom designed Kisabeth sofa. The draperies are a Clarence House fabric. David Buckingham created the gun wall sculpture. 

Artist Shaun Smiths intricately woven wood deer head looks astonishingly like a pixillated computer image. Clarence House fabric drapery, through Culp Associates.

Allen Kirsch designed a glamorous chocolate Venetian plaster powder bath with white oak cabinetry, Emperador  marble counters, and Vitraform glass sink. A niche was built to hold an Asian artifact. The sconces are Boyd, through Donghia.

In the master bedroom, custom floating side tables were made by Kisabeth Furniture; red Womb chair from Knoll; encaustic painting by Brad Ellis1860 Chinese daybed used as coffee table, from Oriental Treasures.

Beautiful linens made in Italy by S.D.H. Fine European Linens

Lounge chairs by Kingsley-Bate; limestone pool and Jacuzzi designed by
Naud Burnett & Partners, and built by Distinctive Pools