The icehouse, built of fieldstone in 1914–1915, was a practical part of Mrs. MacDowell’s plan for a self-sufficient farm. Winter ice cut from a nearby pond was stored here for summer use at the Colony. Idle since 1940, it was a handsome but outdated farm building. In 1995, Mrs. Drue Heinz, a vice chairman of the Colony, generously donated funds to reclaim the icehouse for use as a sculptors’ studio and establish a studio maintenance fund.
As part of The Campaign for the Studios (1993–1999), a design for the conversion of the icehouse was prepared with input from working sculptors. The resulting “white box” interior offers no distractions to compete with a work in progress. The roof was rebuilt as a taller structure with clerestory windows on all four sides. Eighteen feet above the floor, a rolling crane connects the outdoor work space with the studio interior, allowing easy movement of heavy materials. Heinz Studio is also equipped with basic welding and fabrication tools.