Newly Restored: Erickson’s Most Inﬂuential Residential Design
A Rebirth Fundraising Celebration, sponsored by the Arthur Erickson Foundation
June 24, 2023
Called Smith House II because this is the second house that Erickson designed for famed modernist painter Gordon Smith, this small but innovative one-bedroom residence is organized around a courtyard-wrapping square spiral. The 1964 house is famous for its projecting cantilevered beams, a design idea that Erickson extended later in the UBC Museum of Anthropology and Robson Square. Over the decades it has become Canada’s most famous modernist house, and both residence and its sublime Erickson-designed garden have inspired generations of West Coast architects. Over the past two years, Smith House II has been expertly restored by Measured Architects for its new residents and our hosts: Andy Sylvester, owner of Equinox Galleries; and Daina Augaitis, former chief curator of the Vancouver Art Gallery. Their stunning collection of contemporary art is now installed in the house, and worth a visit in its own right, and tours will include visits to Marion’s weaving studio and Gordon’s painting studio, left as they were when last used by the artists. This will be the first chance for the public to see Smith House II in its most splendid shape since first opening in 1964. As a special bonus, there is also an optional side visit to the nearby house of Douglas Coupland, with its extravagant pop cultural collection, hosted by the writer-artist himself. Don’t miss this rare opportunity, which will also support the conservation and education work of the AEF.
Tickets are strictly limited by the size of the venue, so please register quickly.
All-inclusive evening event: $500 per person. Includes drinks, catering, add-on visit to the Douglas Coupland residence hosted by the author, adult membership initiation or renewal in the Arthur Erickson Foundation for one year, and a copy of Michael Prokopow's book on Smith II from Oro Editions of San Francisco. A charitable tax receipt for $350 per ticket will be provided, on request.
Shuttle from off-site parking to Smith House II.
Greeting by AEF Board members; welcome drink. Introduction to the house by critic-historian Trevor Boddy.
Tours in small groups through the house and studios, viewing Sylvester and Augaitis’s art collection newly installed in the house, including works by Gordon Smith and other top BC artists. Prominent artist/historians, architects and landscape experts will be available to interpret the building, garden, art and furniture collection.
6:00 to 6:30 PM
Reception in the garden designed by Arthur Erickson, catered First Nations box lunch charcuterie by Tawnshi Caterers, prime wines from Birch Block Vineyards.
6:30 to 7:30 PM
Optional side visit to the nearby Douglas Coupland House, hosted by the artist-writer.
8:00 PM wrap-up
A toast to the memory of Marion and Gordon Smith and Arthur Erickson by AEF Past President Phil Boname.
7:30 to 8:00 PM
Regular return shuttles to off-site parking.
Photo credit: Ema Peter Photography