9/16/2011 6:27:33 PM

AIA Austin Homes Tour 2011
Tour coming October 1-2 in Austin. Two homes we worked on – by Paul Lamb and Pollen Architecture – are on the tour. Thanks to Dalgleish Construction, Paul Lamb, Michael Young and Elizabeth Alford for including me on their great projects! For details:

7/29/2011 1:21:30 PM
New, eco-friendly Italian plasters
We are very excited about our new line of Italian plasters and pigments. They are lime-based, made from all-natural ingredients, and suitable for interior and exterior use. Call or write if you’d like to see samples!

7/28/2011 1:29:10 PM
Esquire Best New Restaurant
Culina in Los Angeles is one of Esquire Magazine’s Best New Restaurants of 2010!

2/27/2010 9:00:52 AM
Four Seasons – Beverly Hills
We’re back from 2 weeks in Los Angeles, working on the remodel of the Four Seasons restaurant. The new venue is called Culina and opens next week. It is a fantastic looking modern rustic space for drinking and eating, seeing and being seen. Subtle chartreuse and charcoal brushed plasters infused with gold and platinum micas create a warm and fresh backdrop to the scene. Our clients are EDG and the wonderful and dynamic Jennifer Johanson. GC is RD Olson.

2/16/2010 10:16:13 AM
Architectural Digest, February 2010
I am pleased to announce our participation in the Emily Summers project featured on the front cover of February’s Architectural Digest. At Emily’s vacation house in Colorado Springs, white grassello walls and fireplaces serve as a backdrop to the stunning architecture, art, and furniture. Emily and Sloan whimsically interpreted the area’s many gold veins using 24 karat gold leaf on plaster.

2/9/2009 4:18:02 PM
San Antonio Riverwalk
We’ve updated the plaster at Bruce Auden’s Biga on the Banks. And at Hotel Contessa- River Level, Two structural Gaudi-esque columns were built up in smooth gypsum plaster to form multiple 3 dimensional flowing tendrils emanating from the columm shaft and extending well into the ceiling.

2/4/2009 7:23:45 PM
Five Sixty, Reunion Tower Dallas
Five Sixty is the fabulous and refreshingly new Wolfgang Puck restaurant atop Reunion Tower in Dallas. EDG commissioned Sloan to install a silver metallic and mica finish on the 360 degree radius ceiling that hovers above downtown Dallas. Thanks to Jennifer Johanson and her colleagues at EDG, and to Doyle Terry for his participation.

11/18/2008 10:09:45 AM
Scagliola tabletops at Hotel Fontainebleau, Miami Beach
David Collins Studio of London commissioned Sloan to create 45 scagliola tabletops for Scarpetta, the Scott Conant restaurant at the newly renovated Fontainebleau. Eight different modern designs feature geometric inlays of Paris blue, white and gray scagliola against a field of deep blue. The classic Miami Beach hotel, originally designed by Morris Lapidus, reopened to great fanfare this week.

10/27/2008 7:39:41 PM
Wolfgang Puck’s Postrio-The Venetian, Las Vegas
We have just completed work at the re-model of Postrio. Floating Ivory plaster walls serve as a backdrop for artwork in the restaurant.

2/26/2008 10:24:38 AM
Dallas W Penthouse in Architectural Digest
For the fifth time, a project we worked on has been featured in Architectural Digest. Titled “The Sky Is the Limit,” the article appears in the March 2008 issue. Emily Summers commissioned us to install white grassello walls and ceilings throughout the interior. The custom scagliola dining table was designed and fabricated in our Austin studio. See the article in full at:

11/5/2007 7:35:23 PM
22 october 2007- an article titled Exposed: Sloan Houser , Plaster artisan ran in Tribeza. Story by Darcie Duttweiler
In the early nineties, Sloan Montgomery Houser was on his way home from another day of dispassionate work as a paralegal in Washington, D.C., when he spotted a crew restoring a Victorian home. “A week later, I was helping,” Houser chuckles. After learning the ropes of restoration, he started restoring scagliola (plaster imitation of ornamental marble) at the Jefferson Hotel in Richmond and found his passion. He applied for an intensive six-month plaster course at the European Institute in Venice, Italy, and upon completion of the course, he moved to Texas to start his own plaster company, Sloan Montgomery. “I couldn’t go through another D.C. winter,” he explains regarding his migration west. Now specializing in the design and application of decorative finishes and plaster ornamentation, Houser and his team have worked on numerous detailed projects, such as an impressive desk in the PageSoutherlandPage office, as well as larger projects, like the entire penthouse floor of the W Hotel in Dallas, which took six months. “The result we got was phenomenal,” he says. While Houser enjoys the design process, it’s the tangible rewards of a day’s labor that makes working with plaster so exciting to him. “There’s that mystery of what’s it going to look like,” he says. It’s easy to see why he’s so mad about plaster. “It’s a natural product. It breathes. It has texture and life. It’s a beautiful aesthetic.” What is your idea of perfect happiness? Swimming in spring-fed, rock bottomed Hill Country swimming holes. This is what tethers me to Central Texas. If you were an inventor, what you would invent? Lately I’ve had visions of a kink-free, environmentally friendly garden water hose. Someone has a patent on the idea, but I can’t find it on the shelves. When and where are you happiest? That space between thoughts. I usually find this in natural settings. I’m happiest when I’m not thinking, just doing. Where is your favorite vacation spot? Port Antonio, Jamaica. Where the fresh mountain spring water meets and melds with the salt water, just off the beach. For the most part, this is a pristine place that has not been trampled on or altered by development. It’s the home of jerk chicken that is fire-cooked in huts along the road—unpretentiously prepared and served yet incredibly spicy and delicious. Who’s your favorite fictional character? Henry Chinaski, the protagonist in a number of Bukowski’s books. He’s a drunk, but he’s got a certain appeal in that he’s brutally honest. Who are your biggest influences?Probably my father. He’s a self-made man, very intelligent and accomplished. Driven yet kind. He passed along a work and moral ethic, a do-it-yourself and do-the-right-thing attitude that is ingrained in me. As a young kid, I remember him instructing me on stitching up my dog’s ear with a needle, dental floss, and iodine after the dog had come home from a fight. What do you consider your greatest achievement? My lovely daughter Scarlett. Her presence and innocence is inspiring me to be less self-centered and wild. It’s hard to let go of being a free-wheeling single guy, but marriage and family definitely offer rewards. What is your favorite period of architecture? Naturally, it’s the Italian Renaissance. Without that revival, many of the artisans that elevated the art and status of plaster and spread it to Europe and beyond would not have happened. And I’d be out of a job.

9/12/2007 8:39:22 AM
Architectural Digest October 2007
The story titled Above & Beyond in October 2007’s Architectural Digest features the project we refer to as the “Floating Box House”. Understated white grassello and marmorino serve as a backdrop to the dramatic site and architecture. Designed by renowned architect Peter Gluck.

9/10/2007 10:08:05 AM
W Hotel Penthouse- Dallas, Texas
We have just completed one of our most impressive projects to date–the 30th Floor of the new W Hotel in Dallas. Emily Summers Design and Hillwood Construction commissioned Sloan to finish out the soaring space, mostly in luminous white grassello. In addition, Sloan created the 14 foot dining room tabletop in a rich “portoro inspired” scagliola. Thanks to all, especially Emily, Wendy, Jason, and Signe of ESDA. Also, my foreman, Jimmy “Di Calci” Shugrue and Jon Lofgren. Many thanks to George, Jeff, Blake, Jim, & Ralph of Hillwood for entrusting us with this great project.

8/29/2006 11:09:42 PM
Spago at Caesars Palace
The crew is back from a remodel of Wolfgang Puck’s signature restaurant, Spago, in Las Vegas. EDG designers specified an original Sloan render of white lime and black sands, which give the tight white surface a peppered look. Accent walls in highly polished alabaster white Stucco Veneziano round out the plaster finishes.

5/5/2005 5:04:22 PM
Modern Marmorino in Austin
Sloan has just completed work on a house designed by renowned New York architect Peter Gluck. One-inch thick plaster walls are finished in white marmorino to complement the progressive architecture. In addition, Sloan formulated a floor plaster for the spa bathroom composed of white cement, lime, quartz flour, and marble dust. Thanks to project architect Burton Baldridge and Jimmy “Di Calce” Shugrue of Los Angeles for his fine workmanship!

3/31/2005 2:42:06 PM
Scagliola, or marbled plaster, is a complex, durable finish that has been used in many architectural contexts in Europe and the U.S. The technique dates back to the 15th century. Like marble, scagliola has twists and veins that go deep into the material. Sloan learned the art of scagliola in Italy and has long dreamed of doing this work for his U.S. clients. He recently realized two opportunities, both for architect Lawrence W. Speck of PageSoutherlandPage. Sloan installed a modern firebox made from scagliola at an elegant Dallas residence. The home as already won an AIA-Austin design award and is expected to receive national recognition. Additionally, Sloan helped create the reception desk at PSP’s new headquarters. A beautiful and sophisticated scagliola slab integrates with millwork by Mark Macek. Special thanks to Jon Lofgren for his valued input on both projects! Photos of both projects coming soon!

5/25/2004 1:59:05 PM
Architectural Digest
The February 2004 issue of Architectural Digest features an Austin project bearing Sloan Montgomery’s handiwork. Emily Summers of Dallas was the interior designer, and Dick Clark was the architect. Integral-color grassello over hard-coat gypsum plaster appears throughout the home.

11/13/2003 1:22:16 PM
Los Angeles Music Center
At Kendall’s Brasserie, a Joachim Splichal eatery at the newly opened Los Angeles Music Center, Sloan and crew formulated a finely crazed, yellow oxide lime/gypsum plaster to achieve the look of an old French bistro. Pressed tin ceilings were given a faux-nicotine stain … as envisioned by Engstrom Design Group.

12/19/2002 11:15:00 AM
Stucco in FLA
Just back from sunny Fort Myers and a new restaurant called Blu Sushi. Electric/cobalt blue venetian plaster walls enhance the modern organic design and furnishings of this unique place, slated to open in the new year.

1/20/2002 1:00:50 PM
Stucco In LA
Los Tres Stuccoteurs have completed work on Vert, Wolfgang Puck’s new bistro in Hollywood. Yellow-ochre pitted plaster adorns the walls, creating the impression of an inherited old building. The restaurant is slated to open late February and is part of the new Academy Awards complex. This restaurant was featured in the Feb 2003 issue of CONTRACT magazine titled “eat like a star”

12/23/2001 11:34:45 AM
The Master of Plaster
A feature story on Sloan, called “The Master of Plaster,” ran in the December 20, 2001 issue of the Austin American-Statesman. See the full text of the article below.

BYLINE: Michael Barnes American-Statesman Arts Writer

What kind of training do you bring to plastering and other artisan finishes? 

My background is in historic preservation and decorative painting. I have undergraduate degrees in psychology and chemistry with graduate study in historic preservation. I worked as a decorative painter in Washington, D.C., for nearly 10 years, restoring a variety of old buildings. In 1996, I went to the European Center for Conservation in San Servolo, Italy, to study traditional marmorino — the type of plaster seen adorning the palazzos in Venice. I’ve been pushing the plaster ever since.

Describe the layers of work and the materials that go into your most elaborate finishes.

The finest integral-color lime plaster finishes (stucco — pronounced STOO-ko) are built up in successive wet-on-wet layers using progressively smaller aggregates with a final topping of lime putty and marble dust. The outcome is a cohesive and stable unit with a chemical composition identical to limestone and the appearance of polished marble.

Why would someone choose this type of treatment for their home surfaces? What are the advantages over other solutions? 

The reason is mainly aesthetic. This is the “real deal,” what many “faux finishes” mimic. The look and especially the feel are what set plaster apart. The lime-based plasters also “breathe,” so as not to crack or trap moisture and breed mold. They are composed of natural materials: lime, sand and marble dust.

I notice that you use some strong colors and subtle shapes in your finishes. What motivates your designs? 

Usually the client, architect or designer. I try to “push” color as people tend to be more conservative initially — but one can derive much joy from color and well-conceived design.

This seems to be a very sophisticated approach. Are Austinites showing more discretion about such projects? 

Yes, this is sophisticated, though it’s also quite simple — local ingredients and time-tested techniques resulting in a hand-wrought finish. I believe Austinites along with other Americans are looking for something real, not mass-produced. Rub your hands on a well- burnished plaster wall — you get a passionate feeling, literally grounded in antiquity.

You may contact Michael Barnes at (512) 445-3647 or

9/21/2001 8:29:50 AM
Stucco in Chicago!
Sloan and crew have just finished work on an upscale restaurant in Chicago: Napa Valley Grille at 616 North State Street. A palette of modified marmorino finishes evokes the architects’ “rustic modern” design concept. Engstrom Design Group of San Rafael, CA, commissioned Sloan Montgomery for this project. Los Tres Stuccoteurs, who met in Italy in 1996, convened on Chi-town to make it happen.