The Belluschi Pavilion at Marylhurst University received the DeMuro Award from Restore Oregon at the 2017 Restoration Celebration.
Every year in November, Restore Oregon holds their Restoration Celebration and hands out honors to architectural landmarks that exemplify “extraordinary historic rehabilitation projects and compatible infill development” across our state. They call it the DeMuro Award, named for Art DeMuro, legendary in our region for high standards and creative vision in historic redevelopment, seen in reuse projects such as the White Stage Block in downtown Portland.
The Belluschi Pavilion, built in the 1950s as a home for the Griffith family of Lake Oswego, was slated to be demolished to make way for a new home to be constructed in its place. Tim Mather of MCM Construction recognized the building’s significance – one of the few homes designed by renowned architect Pietro Belluschi, and the only one of its kind in Lake Oswego – and with the help of fellow mid-century modern enthusiasts, the building was dissembled and put into storage until a permanent home could be found.
That permanent home turned out to be at Marylhurst University. In 2015, the Belluschi Pavilion opened on the Marylhurst campus.
Janet Eastman covered the story for The Oregonian, writing: “For this humble home for the Griffiths, Belluschi applied his signature Northwest modern style, using Douglas fir ceilings that extended beyond the interior walls to create rain-protecting and shade-producing eaves. The plan, which was published in Life magazine, could expand from one bedroom to four as a family grew, and be built for around $7,000.”
You might say Belluschi’s design was the precursor to today’s tiny house movement.
The 921-square-foot Belluschi Pavilion now serves as an educational and event space. It often is the setting for community events, such as the recent Marylhurst Reading Series event featuring National Book Award nominee Shane McCrae, and it can be rented for private gatherings as well.