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Nine Things the Director of the Graham Foundation Has in Her Home

The stylish architecture buff is heading up the Chicago Architecture Biennial this fall.

Photos: Anna Knott

It’s a busy year for Sarah Herda: As she continues her role as director of the Graham Foundation, a nonprofit architectural organization, she also prepares to codirect the Chicago Architecture Biennial (October 3 to January 3, chicagoarchitecturebiennial.‌org). The first such event in North America, the biennial will host world-class architects from more than 40 countries for a series of events focused around the future of building, making Chicago the center of the contemporary architectural universe. “No matter where you are in the world, you learned about Chicago when you became an architect. It’s a shared backdrop to have a conversation about the future,” says the 42-year-old Seattle native.

Herda’s passion for architecture extends to her personal effects, and her home—a Mies van der Rohe high-rise on Lake Shore Drive—is a modernist oasis for her and her husband, Kenneth Stewart, chief of operations for Rebuild Foundation, which focuses on neighborhood redevelopment. Here are some of her favorite things.

Tucker silk dress

Tucker silk dress

($324 for similar style, tuckerbygabybasora.‌com)
“Gaby [the designer], one of my best friends and a Chicago native, has a print for every occasion.”

 

David Hartt photo

David Hartt photo

(davidhartt.net)
“I am fascinated by the manifestation of utopian ideals in a pink room, with a drum set and half-made geodesic toy.”
Photo: Courtesy of Corbett vs. Dempsey

 

E. Porselli leather ballet flats

E. Porselli leather ballet flats

($310, jcrew.‌com)
“Perfect for running around the city.”

 

Graceland souvenir mug

Graceland souvenir mug

($15 for similar style, shop.graceland.‌com)
“ ‘Taking care of business’ is the credo of the Biennial team!”

 

Felted wood necklace

Felted wood necklace

“I have an obsession with fiber arts. I found this at a design shop in Venice, Italy.”

 

Irena Haiduk sculpture

Irena Haiduk sculpture

(allyouknowistrue.‌net)
“Her work is tough—really tough and really beautiful.”
Photo: Courtesy of the artist

 

Lindsey Adelman chandelier

Lindsey Adelman chandelier

($146, lindseyadelman.‌com)
“This is called a make-it-yourself chandelier: My sister-in-law and I made it for my husband.”

 

‘Chez Panisse Café Cookbook’ by Alice Waters

Chez Panisse Café Cookbook by Alice Waters

($22, Read It & Eat, 2124 N. Halsted St.)
“This is my mother’s copy and the only book I took to college.”
Photo: Courtesy of HarperCollins

 

Ryan Palider wooden cutting board

Ryan Palider wooden cutting board

“Ryan is a Chicago-based architect and an interesting designer. This is a view out of one of Mies’s buildings.”

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