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“One cannot make a new architecture every Monday morning.”
-attributed to Mies Van Der Rohe

For too long architects and designers have been inventing new architectures. This period has been called Modernism. If the history of architecture is at least 5000 years long, and modernism has been ascendant for 100 of those years, then don’t we owe ourselves some familiarity with the 4900 years that preceded it? That is what the Institute is about – not orthodoxy, but a greater visual literacy.

For more information on the ICAA Northern California Chapter or to become an Annual or Event Sponsor please contact us at or call (415) 445-6700

Zahid Sardar will present an illustrated lecture on his new book, In & Out of Paris: Gardens of Secret Delights. A reception and book signing on June 22nd at the Walt Disney Family Museum  (more...) 

In partnership with with the Northern California Chapter, annual sponsor QuarryHouse hosted a memorable educational workshop with master stone carver, Nicholas Fairplay (more...)

ICAA National offers Certificate programs, Summer Studios and  Winterim Intensives to provide students with a foundation in design and composition, elements of classical architecture, proportion, drawing and rendering, and the art of building (more...)


Member Lucia Howard's collection, Piraneseum, is the leading source for architectural souvenirs of the Grand Tour, offering four types of 17th, 18th and 19th century mementos – paintings, etchings and works on paper, models, and decorative arts (more...)



Abraham Thomas, Director of Sir John Soane's Museum, London

Thank you Zeterre  Landscape Architecture for sponsoring this issue of the Northern California Chapter Newsletter

The Emerging Professionals of the ICAA will host an outdoor sketching course at one of San Francisco's most beautiful and historic music venues, the Spreckels Temple of Music bandshell in Golden Gate Park (more...)


Fulfilling our Mission of bringing quality education to ICAA members and the general public, our programming continues to offer foundational courses on classical moldings, proportion, and the Classical Orders. Our next course, a Classical Primer, coming up June 16th  (more...) 

Coburn D. Everdell AIA
Chapter President and Director for Education

Chapter President Coburn Everdell recently returned from a tour of Venice with John Hall, MA Oxford, who has been directing courses and leading innovative tours combining art and architecture for over 30 years (more...)


One could imagine that classicism looks down at us as we roam the street, telling stories which we cannot hear and which if we could we would not understand; because the language has been forgotten: The language of proportion, orders, elements, moldings, and trabeation (the system of combining column, beam and pediment). If we can learn the language, we can better understand the built environment. And the stories of the Corinthian maiden dying young, the Doric masculinity and Ionic femininity, will have meaning.

To that end we develop courses in examining classical detail by drawing it, proportion by drawing it, form by rendering it, and seeing by sketching. To support this effort we gather to hear lectures, share books, have parties in beautiful spaces, and carry on conversation in the context of design. In an age where CAD, Architectural Engineering, and Value Engineering have usurped Design, The Institute of Classical Architecture and Art aims  to re-establish the “designer who draws”.

When I was elected to the post of Chapter President in December, I inherited a robust organization of 25 board members, a 7-course education curriculum, a book signing and lecture series, tours and variety of other first class programming.  Also, the Julia Morgan Awards program, which reinforced our strength and mission by recognizing and awarding classical practitioners and Patrons. In 2015, we seek to continue moving from strength to strength in offering more education opportunities, expanding the reach of our programming, and cultivating a new generation of ICAA members through the creation of our Emerging Professionals program.

I gratefully thank the Board of Directors for their unwavering effort and commitment in shaping the future of our Northern California Chapter, and our Patrons and Sponsors, without whom all that we do would be impossible. I doubly thank our Coordinating Director, for her efforts to corral and direct a group of otherwise hardworking professionals in the execution of ICAA-NOCAL’s programs and goals.

Above all, I thank you, our members, for keeping our Chapter strong, vibrant and growing.

We have an exciting year ahead, celebrating the centennial of the Pan-Pacific International Exposition here in our great city. I look forward to seeing you all at upcoming events.

In Firmness, Commodity and Delight, I Remain

As we continue to plan our 2015 calendar, please check our website for newly announced members-only tours,  "On the Boards" office tours, education classes and lectures, book signings and other first-class programming and events.

Our Chapter was proud to welcome Abraham Thomas, Director of Sir John Soane's  Museum of London. Sponsored by Stancil Studios, members enjoyed an illustrated lecture of  the great house museum famous for the embedded layers of adaptive experimentation and "tinkering" that continues to this very day.Watch the video here or visit the museum's website.

Daniel P.  Gregory, writer of From The Land,  presented an illustrated lecture exploring the dynamic houses and wineries designed by Howard Backen and his firm, Backen, Gillam, & Kroeger. A very special lecture and book signing sponsored by Coburn D. Everdell, AIA  (more...)

The Northern California Chapter of the ICAA provides this and upcoming newsletters to help
you keep a pulse on what's happening and to let you know about upcoming dates and events.

           Highlights of Northern California Chapter members and a vibrant community dedicated to cultivating classicism

On the evening of May 4th, over 400 supporters of the Institute of Classical Architecture & Art (ICAA) gathered in New York City to celebrate the 34th annual Arthur Ross Awards for Excellence in the Classical Tradition (more...)

The Decorators Host the Decorator ~ An Evening with Nicky Haslam


British interior designer Nicky Haslam's eclectic and self-proclaimed cosmopolitan taste has defined his fascinating, decades-spanning career.   His celebrity Rolodex includes the likes of the Mick Jagger, Madonna, Charles Saatchi, Ringo Starr, Rupert Everett and Princess Diana, to name a few.  Always on the best-dressed lists, the dynamic Haslam - artist, socialite, memoirist, cabaret-singing talent and all around bon vivant - has also edited, written and photographed for numerous magazines and been featured in publications worldwide.

Generously sponsored by Allison Caccoma, BAMO, Geoffrey De Sousa, HEWN, Kathleen Navarra, Kendall Wilkinson, Suzanne Tucker, Amy Weaver, Antonio Martins, Heide Gerpheide and Jay Jeffers,  this sold out book signing and illustrated lecture was a party not to be missed!