Gary Lindstrom

Gary Lindstrom was born in Erie, Pennsylvania, in 1932. During high school, he developed a love of architecture while working with his father, who was a builder and finish carpenter. After graduating from Erie Academy, he served in the Army Corps of Engineers before entering architectural school at The Pennsylvania State University, where he received his architecture degree in 1958.

Following his graduation, Lindstrom, newly married, moved to New Canaan, Connecticut, with the expectation that he would work for architect Victor Christ-Janer. Instead, his first job was in the office of noted lighting consultant Richard Kelly, who designed the lighting for Philip Johnson's Glass House (1949) and other houses in New Canaan. During Lindstrom's employment, Kelly worked on the Four Seasons Restaurant in the Seagram Building (Mies van der Rohe and Johnson, 1954-58). This work experience greatly influenced Lindstrom's designs, making him ever conscious of light sources and their effects on architecture. After leaving Kelly's office, Lindstrom worked for a firm in Greenwich that specialized in church design and then worked for Victor Christ-Janer before opening his own firm around 1963.

Lindstrom designed only two houses other than his own home (Lindstrom House, 1963-64). His numerous commissions included many buildings for schools, colleges, and child welfare institutions. He designed three buildings for the New Canaan Country School. His list of clients for residence halls included Williams College, Fairfield University, Lycoming College, Roberts Wesleyan Rochester, University of Rhode Island, and the Salisbury School, where he also designed a library. For the Greer School, Woodycrest-Five Points, and Susquehanna Valley Home?all child welfare facilities in New York?he designed numerous buildings including an infirmary, a dining hall, a recreation building, and housing. His work also included recreational facilities, including gymnasiums for the New York Military Academy and the New Canaan Country School.

Lindstrom also designed toys, furniture, and jewelry and sold a line of handcrafted bowls and jewelry in specialty stores. His sculpture pieces crafted in wood and metal were exhibited while he attended architectural school and afterwards, and his work was entered in the Silvermine Exhibit Art of the Northeast. Lindstrom was also interested in photography; along with the usual photos of his own buildings, he often took aerial shots of proposed building sites from his beloved Cessna plane.

Gary Lindstrom died of cancer in 1980 at the age of 48.


National Trust for Historic Preservation, 2009.