Carved into the hillside of a spectacular site in East Kessler Park, is one of the most extraordinary mid-century modern homes ever constructed. It sits on an acre of land, so quietly nestled in the trees, that it could possibly be overlooked. It is this understated presence that makes the home so intriguing.
Typical of mid-century modern architecture, the structure is thoughtfully married to nature by floor-to-ceiling walls of glass, and the use of organic materials that seem to “ bring the outside in.” True to most mid-century modern homes sleek, clean lines are integrated with warm textures giving one the feeling of serene comfort. The way these typical elements of MCM design were executed by architect David Braden, in 1962, is even more impressive when you realize the engineering challenges imposed by the site. There is nothing typical about the lot. Braden managed to attack the very steep grade, heavily wooded acreage and almost impossible rock bed by cantilevering the structure out over the hillside. This, combined with the subtle way that state-of-the art technologies were incorporated into a recent renovation, make this property an absolute masterpiece.
The interior is over 4,200 square feet and features four living areas, four bedrooms, two kitchens (one is a catering kitchen), two fireplaces, and is surrounded on all sides by outdoor living areas. The floor-plan flows from large, open spaces to quiet intimate spaces and thus is a wonderful venue for festive gatherings of 200 people, or romantic dinners for two. Dotted throughout the home are wonderful selections of art by local artists and picturesque views into the tree tops of the native forest.
A strikingly modern pool, sparkling fountain, outdoor shower, and in-ground glass fire pit are tucked away, so secluded that they appear to be hundreds of miles from civilization. Yet on the opposite side of the house there are rooms and decks reaching toward the glimmering view of the downtown Dallas skyline. The house also features a hidden movie theater that was carved into the limestone on which the house sits.
This home is architecturally significant, not just for Oak Cliff, and not just for Dallas, but as a representation of the great architecture of our post war nation. Don’t miss an opportunity to experience it on the 2013 home tour.
Get a limited edition book about old Oak Cliff
Filled with wonderful pictures of fine historic buildings and street scenes, this book shares stories about the beginnings of this great, iconic area of Dallas.
"The Hidden City - Oak Cliff, Texas"
by Bill Minutaglio, Holly Williams