Bali-Hai advertisement from 1961. Tom Ham respected good architecture and leveraged polynesian culture for a profit

Sunday October 27, 2013

GIFT LIST IDEA #1:Neiman Marcus’ Glass House Experience, a “gift” that includes an overnight stay in Philip Johnson’s Glass House (1949) situated on the late architect’s estate in New Canaan, CT includes a “locally sourced, multicourse culinary experience” for up to ten guests for a mere $30K.

GIFT LIST IDEA #2: A new addition to Lego’s architecture series is New York City’s United Nations Building a collaborative effort led by Le Corbusier and Oscar Niemeyer in 1949. Learn more HERE.

ARE YOU A WEB ENTREPRENUER? Here's a project for someone - create a directory of all of the regionally focused websites dedicated to modernism. I really love THIS SITE focused on New Orleans modernism. A directory of all of these sites and their contents could create a virtual nationwide network promoting US Modernism! Please do it soon.

HEADING TO BALBOA PARK? The Mingei's Please Be Seated exhibition is a must-see (must-seat?). From woven mats to high-tech contemporary designs, this exhibition will reveal the never-ending quest to seat people comfortably, appropriately, and fashionably. Drawn from the Museum’s permanent collection and from other institutional and private collections, the exhibition will present wide-ranging examples of seating from many periods and cultures. See work by Charles Eames, Sam Maloof, George Nakashima, Sori Yanagi, Maurice Martine and many more, 20th century designers included in the show. While you are Mingei stop by to see Allied Craftsmen Today and Struck By Modernism shows still on view under the same roof.

Beyond small updates to bios for Homer Delawie, Robert Mosher, Norm Applebaum, John Mortenson, and John Lloyd Wright this week, I posted the first draft of Schoell & Gertiz's bio HERE. Please let me know if you know anything more about this firm's productivity between 1959-1979 by emailing me HERE.

Monday October 21, 2013

Modern San Diego friend, Dave Hampton, has helped eulogize another dear friend, Russell W. Baldwin (1934-2012), in a wonderful piece both profiling the public’s latest posthumous opportunity to engage with his work – at the new downtown library. Writing for Culture Lust, Hampton states “And if some library goers are a bit puzzled by what they see, that's okay. Baldwin was used to that. He would have been so pleased.” Read the full piece HERE.

Friend of Modern San Diego, Chris Szwedo's latest film, Eye on the 60s, will be making its San Diego. Join us for the screening at MOPA on November 3. You can learn more about the film and buy tickets HERE.And you can always check out the film’s site HERE. You can watch the trailer HERE. Or if you’re one of those Facebook folks you can go HERE.

Good news for those that were unable to attend the debut of Coast Modern at the La Paloma Theatre. The San Diego Design Film Festival will be hosting the film Coast Modern on November 5 at Cinepolis in Del Mar at 7pm. Click HERE to buy tickets.

Actor Jay Huguley, the current owner of William Kesling's Smith House (ca. 1936) was just profiled by the LA Times HERE.

The Trousdale Estates section of Los Angeles has been rediscovered by a new wave of Angelenos devoted to preserving (while others destroy) designs by Harold Levitt, Wallace Neff, James Dolena or Paul Williams, Richard Dorman, Ed Fickett, A. Quincy Jones, Lloyd Wright and the firm of Buff, Straub & Hensman. Learn more HERE.

Lloyde Therkelsen's Robert Winsett Residence in the late 1950s

Thursday October 10, 2013

This coming Sunday, October 13, the Escondido History Center will present their Third Annual Escondido Adobe Home Tour featuring the personal family home of Jack Weir (founder of Weir Bros. Construction). This year, tour goers will visit the Sikes Farmstead (1870), the Jack Weir House (1958), the Roy Chambre House (1980) by George Patterson, the Goldman House (built ca. 1955) and the Barend House (1967). Purchase tickets in advance at the History Center or online at For more information call (760) 743-8207. For more on Weir Bros adobe homes, go HERE.     

I have long been intrigued by the life and career of 'Whitey' Therkelsen - partially because information is scarce. In speaking with architect Art Simpson recently he mentioned that he may know of a Therkelsen home in the Montecillo area north of Del Mar. My interest in his career is now at a fever pitch! If you have any information on Therkelsen, please drop me a line at

Check out a unique way to tour the Los Angeles area online - via a decorative cinder block tour HERE.

San Diego landscape architect Joe Yamada has been documented very well via a recent oral history effort posted to YouTube HERE.

The latest set of shows examining Southern California, the Getty’s ‘Pacific Standard Time Presents: Modern Architecture in L.A.’ is profiled HERE and HERE.

Los Angeles’ The Craft in America Center is hosting a fantastic show – Eudorah M. Moore: The Journey of a Visionary – through October 26. Ms. Moore (1918-2013) is said to have “…advanced the craft and design movement through her dynamic leadership, filling the roles of curator and director of the California Design Programs of the Pasadena Art Museum, activist, author, and appointee to the National Endowment for the Arts. Moore brought voice to the American Crafts Movement.” The Craft in America Center honors Moore's legacy in an exhibition of objects, photos, interviews, catalogs and ephemera including her California Design Program. Learn more HERE.

While I don't know the person behind this blog, I was delighted to see recognition of the Medallion Home program. I have come across a number of homes that were promoted as Medallion Homes throughout San Diego - homes that featured the latest in electric appliances from intercoms to blenders built-in to countertops and more. Check out a nice starter piece HERE.


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