Saturday May 18, 2013
Tomorrow is Los Angeles Modern Auctions' latest sale - check it out HERE.
If completed LACMA’s $650 million remodel would demolish the core of the museum's campus, including the original 1965 buildings by William L. Pereira and a 1986 addition by Hardy Holzman Pfeiffer Associates. The current proposal would leave intact Bruce Goff's 1988 Pavilion for Japanese Art and the Art Deco May Co. building (where the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is planning a $300-million film museum). Read more HERE.
A new photography show, Lucien Hervé: Le Corbusier in India, is now on view at the Agnès b. Galerie Boutique in New York, through June 30. Most of the pictures depict Chandigarh’s sun-stroked architecture bathed in deep shadows. The show also displays Hervé’s affinity for high-wire, neo-Constructivist perspective, in the vein of Aleksandr Rodchenko’s vertiginous lens. The show seems timed to coincide with Le Corbusier: An Atlas of Modern Landscapes, MoMA’s planned blockbuster summer show. Read and see more HERE.
Paint tests, monitoring devices and a new floor at Charles and Ray Eames' landmark home are all part of a pilot project of the Getty Conservation Institute's Conserving Modern Architecture Initiative. Read more about restoring a Case Study House HERE.
Some of you may know San Diegan - Dawn AKA House of Blu – from Palm Springs and LA Modernism shows. If you haven’t met her, check out her inventory HERE
On June 6, Wright is auctioning off Harry Bertoia's commissions for Standard Oil! In 1974, at the base of Edward Durell Stone's modernist Standard Oil building on Chicago's lakefront, Harry Bertoia composed the largest installation of sounding sculptures. Three large-scale Sonambients, among the best to come to the market, along with a selection of table top sculptures and maquettes from the commission make up this historic sale. See more HERE.
Sunday May 5, 2013
Wright's Scandinavian Design auction is to be held on May 16th. Look at stuff HERE.
Modernica's next factory sale is May 18th. Check it out HERE.
Los Angeles Modern Auction's 'Modern Art & Design Auction' is slated for May 19th. Check it out HERE.
Can't find a contemporary architect to help you design a 'mid-century' feeling home? Buy vintage Richard Neutra plans and build HERE.
This- and next weekend see ‘Form + Function @ Library - A Weeklong Celebration of Mid-Century Modernism,’debut at Berkeley’s Central Library. Read more HERE.
James Hubbell’s Ilan Lael Foundation is supporting a series of home tours and talks with architect Ken Kellogg at his projects spanning several decades. These tours and discussions started last Saturday (April 28) with the first public showing of the Baras Residence Remodel and yesterday’s Babcock Residence in Mission Beach. On Saturday May 11, the Guth Residence will be opened to the public since being constructed in 1979. On May 18th between 2-4pm Kellogg will host his 1959 Silva Residence open house. Saturday, May 25 will see the Yen Residence open to La Jolla visitors. The series will conclude on Saturday, June 22 with a picnic at the Organic Architecture Foundation site on Palomar Mountain. For all of these events, please RSVP to Ken HERE. Provide a check or money order made out to "APR Trust" when you sign-in at the door. For more information go to his site HERE.
Saturday April 20, 2013
One of our intrepid reporters dug up one of those 'The San Diego That Wasn't to Be' projects - the San Diego Theatre by Bertrand Goldberg. Goldberg, widely recognized for Marina City, designed the theatre - but went unbuilt. Read more HERE.
As Pacific Standard Time Presents (PSTP) gets going, my votes – worthy of your time – as are as follows:
Outside In: The Architecture of Smith and Williams (now through June 16) at the Art, Design & Architecture Museum at UC Santa Barbara. Read more HERE.
A. Quincy Jones: Building For Better Living (May 25—September 8) at the Hammer Museum. Read more HERE.
Overdrive: L.A. Constructs the Future, 1940–1990 (now through July 21) at the J. Paul Getty Museum. Read more HERE.
Technology and Environment: The Postwar House in Southern California (now through July 12) a the W. Keith and Janet Kellogg University Art Gallery at Cal Poly Pomona. Read more HERE.
Friday April 19, 2013
In under 2-minutes, OMD manage to animate the fabled optimism of the post-war era with the very real horrors of the atomic age. Watch Orchestral Manoevres in the Dark's newly released 'Atomic Ranch' video HERE.
Who says all the news is 'bad news'! Check out a great story about a 14-year old modernist HERE!
Whether or not you saw the show 'California's Designing Women 1896-1986' at the Autry last year you should buy a copy of the catalog - due out in June. More details can be found HERE.
Friday April 12, 2013
Tonight - drop by a Modern San Diego Real Estate listing preview at 6227 Caminito Carrena between 530 - 730 pm. Email Suzanne for more details HERE
Check out the recently launched Pacific Standard Time Presents: Modern Architecture in L.A. website HERE.
Going to be in NYC? Between 5/2 – 6/22, R 20th Century Gallery will host their travelling exhibition on Greta Magnusson Grossman (1906-1999). The show will include architectural drawings, furniture, lamps, ceramics, textiles, prototypes as well as original books, press cuttings and photographs. After migrating to Los Angeles in 1940, her work had a big impact on American modernism. Some of her first drawings, including chairs and lamps, were selected for the “Good Design” exhibition presented at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. View more HERE.
Taking the "...dubious place in history as having had one of the shortest lives of an architecturally ambitious project in Manhattan..." Tod Williams & Billie Tsien’s American Folk Art Museum (built in 2001) will be razed by the (cough, cough) Museum of Modern Art. Read more HERE.
Sunday April 7, 2013
I just posted a new feature article, 'Modern La Jolla', to the 'Features' section HERE.
Monday April 1, 2013
The Los Angeles Modernism Show & Sale is back! Exhibitors of 20th century furniture, decorative and fine arts will be at the Barker Hangar at Santa Monica Air Center between April 26-28, 2013. More information is HERE.
Peter Loughrey and Dan Tolson are blogging about the upcoming items for sale at the May 19th LA Modern Auction. Check out the stuff before the catalog comes out HERE.
Results from last Thursday’s 'Modern Design' auction at WRight are posted HERE.
The staff of the Hyde Art Gallery are collating background information on Marj Hyde for Modern San Diego. Updates to her page will be posted soon!
Friday March 29, 2013
One of our intrepid reporter teams drove to Los Angeles to scour the A. Quincy Jones archive for more information on the architect's designs for San Luis Rey Estates - including the 'Lido' in which they live! Spread the word that these Oceanside homes need to be saved/preserved/celebrated.
Sunday March 24, 2013
"On Oct. 26, 1952, a 23-year-old artist named Helen Frankenthaler made a painting on unstretched, unprimed canvas laid on the floor, using a freehand stain technique that owed a great deal to Jackson Pollock but was less systematic. She called it “Mountains and Sea,” and it became her best-known, most influential work..." If you are in NYC through April 13, check out the show 'Painted on 21st Street' at Gagosian Gallery HERE.
Decades ago Mike and Joan Wells ran a fantastic art gallery, Flea Market West, in Old Town. They featured the work of Marj Hyde. While I put up a brief transcript of an article HERE, I am looking for any/all information on the topic for a more comprehensive review. Please let me know if you have any leads!
Wednesday March 20, 2013
If any single story has struck me about how San Diegans were once offended by modern art, it is one told by writer James Britton in his Art of the City column from June 1956. What follows is his account of how local painter Marj Hyde offended folks (and likely with some of the paintings in the image above) with her contemporary paintings. I have been in search of these very works by Miss Hyde. Please let me know if you have any leads, or information about the artist as I am putting a biographical page together on her life and career HERE.
“If my kid painted pictures like those, I’d give him a beating,” said one customer. That’s only a sample of the intolerant reaction heard by officials of Security Trust and Savings Bank when their handsome new Hillcrest branch opened with innocent, elegant paintings by Marj Hyde on the wall.
How did the paintings get into the bank? It was architect Lloyd Ruocco’s idea, and he seems to have hypnotized bank officials with his sharply focused, insidious chatter about clean design, light design, bright design, right design. When it came time for the finishing touch of grace, Ruocco asked Miss Hyde to select paintings of hers that would complement his architecture. She understood they would hang for a month, after which another local painter of integrity would be dangled before the eyes of the money changing citizenry.
Bank officials may have been hypnotized, but they snapped out of it when the lowbrow complaints started buzzing in their ears. They quickly ordered the paintings taken down, though only two days had elapsed of the month Miss Hyde expected. Said manager M.A. Herbert: “Only three people made favorable comments on the pictures.”
Probably unaware that they were slapping a genteel young lady who happens also to be a passionately sincere painter, the bankers had proceeded naturally enough on the assumption that there is no profit in upsetting good customers. The thought could hardly have been expected to appeal to them, as it appeals to us, that a little upsetting is just what such customers need.
Why should bankers be expected to carry the torch for quality in art? The obvious answer is that bankers are recognized pillars of society, and pillars make fine support for torches.
Bankers often supported advanced art, even finding it good for business. American history boasts many banks that were pioneer architecture and architecture is the most abstract of arts. One of the celebrated building designs of the twentieth century’s sixth decade is the Manufacturers Trust Company (Fifth Avenue at 43rd Street, New York), which confronts its customers with many bold works of art, including Harry Bertoia’s mysterious sculpture and even a painting by – dare we say it? – Picasso. Its president H.C. Flanigan, is an avid collector of modern art.
President of San Diego’s Security Trust and Savings Bank is Mr. A. J. Sutherland, a widely respected community leader whose list of public stance is unsurpassed locally. Security’s downtown office, where Mr. Sutherland sits, is hung with reassuringly familiar landscape paintings to which no one could possibly object except some odd duck with an art educated eye in which case most of the landscapes would be pronounced esthetically dead on sight.
Monday March 18, 2013
NPR posted a nice slideshow of Ezra Stoller photos related to the recent publication Ezra Stoller, Photographer HERE.
The Modern La Jolla Committee met again recently to discuss a number of initiatives to support the La Jolla Historical Society's initiative to highlight the period in addition to the institution's other ongoing efforts. We are discussing publications, lectures, exhibitions and related events for 2013 and beyond. Check out the latest issue of the newsletter Timekeeper for highlights of the effort thus far or email me HERE.
Sunday March 3, 2013
One of our intrepid reporters found THIS POST on Sentinel Savings and Loan (ca. 1962) by architect S. David Underwood (1917-2002) a former employee of the Millard Sheets Studio. The writer also outlines Sheets Studio work for Home Savings and the San Diego Zoo HERE.
Steve Aldana posted a nice survey of the newly issued Handbook of California Design HERE.
Monday Febuary 25, 2013
Recently restored, Buff Straub & Hensman's Thomson House (1957) in Pasadena just garnered a Preservation Award for Restoration from the City of Pasadena. Read more about it HERE.
Bob Hope Residence by John Lautner is up for sale for the first time. $50 million puts you into iconic architecture with a rich history. Read more HERE.
Sunday Febuary 17, 2013
A new exhbition, Herb Turner: Realist/Idealist, opens at the Oceanside Museum of Art on March 10 with an opening reception (on March 9 between 5-7pm). Modernist building designer Herb Turner was also an accomplished painter and sculptor who upheld the ideals of classical art and the old masters while incorporating modern concerns and the world around him. He studied in New York under Robert Brackman and Naum Los before moving to Del Mar where he served as an apprentice to John Lloyd Wright. Turner won numerous awards for his art over his many decades of creative output. As an architect he completed dozens of stunning residential and commercial structures and was a true visionary who found ways to integrate architecture with its environment long before the “green” movement was established. The Oceanside Museum of Art will exhibit Turner’s paintings, sculptures, drawings, photographs and architectural models through May 19. Learn more HERE.
Wednesday Febuary 13, 2013
Have you signed up for our newsletter? Click HERE.
We suggest that you buy tix for 'Coast Modern' soon before it sells out' HERE.
Thursday Febuary 7, 2013
You can now buy tix for 'Coast Modern' HERE.
Monday Febuary 4, 2013
Los Angeles Modern Auction has set the date for their next sale - May 19. More HERE.
Please join us on Thursday, February 21 at 7pm for the San Diego debut of 'Coast Modern' at the La Paloma Theater in Encinitas. Learn more about the film and watch the trailer HERE.
Consider taking an art/architecture tour of UC San Diego. Learn more HERE.
Palm Springs Modernism Week is coming up (2/14-2/24). Keep up on the details HERE.
Tuesday January 29, 2013
Having witnessed folks from well outside our region look down their steep noses while questioning the quality and quantity of modernist works in San Diego, one has to wonder how many believe Cap St Martin – on the French Riviera – hosts important work. For those that have heard of, or seen photographs of Eileen Gray’s house, or E1027 as she referred to it, its location is not the point. Or is it? The cliff-hugging home engaging the Mediterranean is where Le Corbusier exploded. Burned bright and then … not. Read THIS BLOGGER’S recent engagement with the house – and go from there!
Saturday January 26, 2013
The UT posted a hearty review of next week's 'Borrego Modern Weekend' HERE.
Construction work at 301 University Avenue was recently halted when remnants of a Streamline Modern building were found underneath. Read more HERE.
Next Saturday, a new exhibit focusing on James Hubbell's sculpture opens at the Oceanside Museum of Art. Read more about In Search of Shadows: James Hubbell Sculpture HERE.
Saturday January 19, 2013
San Diego-based master architect Arthur Decker’s showpiece originally commissioned for Daily Californian editor Cy Casady is now publicly available for the first time since being nestled in its wooded, north-facing Mount Helix location. As one of his favorite works, Mr. Decker purchased this unique home from Mr. Casady and would raise his family and enjoy the rest of his life overlooking the El Cajon valley from the residence’s living room-wide wall of glass. This open, bright, expansive example of regional mid-century modernism retains its sleek original flair. As a rarity these days to find such a pristine example of post-War architecture saved from the clutches of remodelers, flippers, and careless owners, this two-owner home is in museum-quality condition – just bring your ideas for furnishing, entertaining, and creating your own store of memories. Learn more HERE.
The Getty’s ‘Pacific Standard Time Presents: Modern Architecture in L.A.’ roster has grown to 11 exhibitions and the Getty Foundation has doled out $3.6 million in grants to 16 organizations for exhibitions, publications and programming (in and around Los Angeles between April and July of this year). Check out the web site HERE.
The term 'brutalism' is tossed around a lot lately - just do a search on Ebay, 1st Dibs and craigslist. About 99.9% of uses of this term refer to everything but the architecture it references. If you want to understand, the misunderstood, check out 'Defending Brutalism: The Uncertain Future of Modernist Concrete Structures' a recent article by David Hay HERE.
Sunday January 13, 2013
The La Jolla Historical Society 'Modern Committee' is collaborating on a guide to 'Modern La Jolla'. Drop me a line if you want to learn more about the process of selecting sites to include/exclude HERE. This spring the map/guide will be available to the public! The shot above exemplifies strong examples of regional modernism in the 92037 (zip code).
On January 31st, Modern San Diego will host an intimate viewing (w/ cheese, crackers and white wine) of Lloyd Ruocco's Beers Residence in Mission Hills. Drop us a line HERE if you would like to see the house (pictured below) prior to it reaching the MLS on February 1st.
Monday January 7, 2013
My friend of nearly 20 years, Huell Howser, passed away early this morning. A friend, a colleague while I worked in public broadcasting, and a fellow fan ot post-War modernism, Huell will be missed by our family and much of California. Huell officiated our wedding on June 2, 2007 - one of the greatest gifts he ever gave us.
Today, we also lost Ada Louise Huxtable, the pioneer of modern architectural criticism for The New York Times. She was 91. Ms. Huxtable started in 1963, “… as the first full-time architecture critic at an American newspaper…,” for The Times. She won the first Pulitzer Prize for distinguished criticism, in 1970. While I have been upset for years that true, meaningful architecture criticism has been absent from the popular press, the void is likely only temporary. But where is tomorrow’s powerful-enough critic that architects and developers consider alongside their designs? Perhaps, someone is following in her footsteps... “Ms. Huxtable was assistant curator of architecture and design at the Museum of Modern Art from 1946 to 1950. She was a Fulbright fellow, studying Italian architecture and design in 1950-52, and a Guggenheim fellow in 1958. She had also begun writing for architectural journals…Out of school, she was hired by Bloomingdale’s to sell a furniture line with works by Eero Saarinen and Charles Eames…. Her husband was L. Garth Huxtable, an industrial designer, with whom Ada collaborated in designing tableware for the Four Seasons restaurant, which opened in 1959 in Mies Van Der Rohe’s Seagram Building." Read more HERE.
Sunday January 6, 2013
Friends of San Diego Architecture will host, Eric Haas, on January 19th at 9:30 a.m. Haas will speak about the restoration of R.M. Schindler’s Bubeshko Apartments (built ca. 1941) near Griffith Park. Click HERE for more information.
Thursday January 3, 2013
On February 2, the Borrego Art Institute and BorregoModern.com will
present Borrego Modern: Architectural Evolution – Mid-Century
to Contemporary an architectural tour featuring the modern architecture
of San Diego’s mid-century modern desert resort. This exclusive
tour will showcase the mid-century designs of Henry Hester, William
Kesling and Cliff May along with the contemporary designs of Walter
Chambers and Richard Orne. The tour provides a snapshot of the evolution
of modern desert design in Borrego Springs and the unique architecture
it has inspired. The tour will additionally feature the recent renovations
of two historic, mid-century buildings in the community and will give
visitors a “behind the scenes” view of their transformation.
A post tour reception will also give guests the opportunity to meet
and mingle with other modern architecture enthusiasts and to explore
more in depth, the Borrego Art Institute.
Wednesday January 2, 2013
On Friday February 1st at 7:30 p.m., please join BorregoModern.com’s Bill Lawrence for his presentation ‘The Architecture of San Diego’s Mid-Century Modern Desert Resort’ presented by the Anza-Borrego Desert Natural History Association. The presentation will outline how “The heat, light, and intense beauty of the Anza-Borrego Desert has had a profound effect on the architectural heritage of Borrego Springs. Using period photographs and the contemporary work of photographer Judy Parker, Bill Lawrence, architectural historian and publisher of BorregoModern.com, will explore the mid-century modern architecture of Borrego Springs, and how the designs of the past continue to influence the present and future of the community.” More information can be found HERE.
Congratulations to Micah and Elizabeth Parzen for securing historic designation for the John and Joan Vondracek House at 851 Amiford Drive. The house was deemed historic because it “Embodies distinctive characteristics of style, type, period, or method of construction or is a valuable example of the use of indigenous materials or craftsmanship.” This is likely because the home’s architect, Hanis Lloyde Therkelsen, has yet to be deemed a ‘master’ builder, designer or architect. Hopefully over time we can improve Therkelsen’s stature with the City of San Diego as so few of his designs remain. Mrs. Vondracek, now living in Sacramento, shared her delight that the 1959 home remains important to the community.
Among the first (of many to come) lists of 2013 is MidCenturyHome’s ‘6 Books Every Mid Century Modern Enthusiast Must Have in 2013’. Check it out HERE.
San Diego blogger, Miss Hell, just posted a nice overview 'San Diego: Midcentury Modern Architecture'. Check it out HERE.
ModernSanDiego friend, Steven Churchill, is looking for the original commissioning client for his Weir Bros home in La Mesa. If you know of anyone related to Dick Morehouse or his 1963 home, check out the site HERE.
Wednesday December 26, 2012
Thank you all for emailing in your recollections of the Copper Penny. I found THIS Lemon Grove Patch piece on College Grove Shopping Center outlining the retailers launching the mall in 1959.
One of these days, when I get around to it, I need to properly catalog the many unique things that make the Palomar College campus worth visiting (for fans of modern design). While the eye will be drawn to the Buckminster Fuller-esque planetarium dome and the brick facades of the many original buildings (all by Paderewski, Mitchell and Dean ca. 1958-1960), the unique gardens, fountains, covered and exposed walkways, and the wonderful wood clock tower really make the campus worth a weekend morning stroll. Visually arresting, the Boehm Gallery façade brick mural/mosaic (pictured above) is only referenced as “… brick-work design on the side of the building is the result of an artist who rescued a number of oddly-shaped and misfired bricks to create a unique design for the Boehm building” on the college's site. Additionally, for all that know of Dave ‘Take Five’ Brubeck’s contribution to jazz, were you aware of his brother, Howard Brubeck’s, role in the community? From hiring San Diego architect Richard Lareau to design his wonderful home in La Mesa, to Palomar College’s Howard Brubeck Theatre (built ca. 1979), the Brubeck name has a fantastic place in local history. Howard spent much of his professional years as a music instructor and music department chairman for the campus. For the time being, drive up to San Marcos and have a look.
Friday December 21, 2012
Do you know the whereabouts of the Copper Penny? Daniel Arthur Munns, Jr. designed San Diego’s Copper Penny Restaurant (ca. 1960) from his Botich & Munns office in Anaheim. The USC grade (1952) only designed few San Diego projects, instead focusing efforts in Monrovia, Anaheim, Buena Park and Long Beach. I am trying to locate the site where this stood/stands. If you have any information, please drop me a line HERE.
I am looking for any information on Delmar Stuart Mitchell. The San Diego-based architect was born in Des Moines, IA on August 6, 1916 and attended the University of Washington between 1934-39. Following his role as a draftsman for Frank Hope (1946), he joined the San Diego Chapter of the AIA in 1948 – the same year he became partner in Paderewski, Mitchell, Dean & Assocs. Please let me know if you have any resources outlining Mr. Mitchell's life/work. I posted draft bio of him HERE. If you have any information, please drop me a line HERE.
I am also looking for any insight into the life/work of architect Ed Malone. Here is what I know: Edward Clyde Malone was born in Oakland, CA on June 1, 1930 – two decades prior to serving as a Sargent in the Marines. He secured his BA in Architecture from USC in 1958 following fellowships with Victor Gruen (1957) and at A.C. Martin (1957). Prior to launching E.C. Malone Architect in 1961, Ed worked as a Designer for Paderewski Mitchell & Dean (1958), and Architect for Deems Martin Associates (1959). Mr. Malone ‘moonlighted’ as Jones & Malone (1958-1960) before hanging out his own shingle. Ed joined the San Diego Chapter of the AIA in 1961, one year after starting work at Tavares Development (1960) as a Project Architect. During several years of his active career, Mr. Malone served as an instructor at Palomar College. I posted draft bio of him HERE. If you have any information, please drop me a line HERE.
Sunday December 16, 2012
This past week Ray Eames would have turned 100 - and the web lit up like an xmas tree. The Eames Office hosted a party HERE, Time Magazine posted vintage LIFE photos HERE and Herman Miller posted some great shots HERE and on and on...just Google her...
But the BIG Ray Eames news is the forthcoming exhibit Ray Eames: A Century of Modern Design opening February 23. Learn more HERE.
Friday December 14, 2012
Ezra Stoller was an architecture student at NYU when he bought his first camera in the late 1930s. Over the course of the next several decades, Stoller would become known for photographing buildings, rather than designing them. His shots of modern masterpieces like Ludwig Mies van der Rohe’s Seagram Building and Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater and Guggenheim Museum often helped those structures attain their iconic status. Stoller’s work is collected in a new book, Ezra Stoller: Photographer, published by Yale University Press, is the first complete survey of Stoller’s career, during which he took nearly 50,000 photographs. It’s currently on sale at Amazon.
Ammo Books, the same publisher behind last year’s text, Alexander Girard, has just released Eames: Beautiful Details. The new book covers Charles & Ray Eames’ explorations in textiles, product, graphic design, toys, film, and photography. Read and see more HERE.
For the spring 2013 issue of CA-Modern magazine, the editors would like to profile serious art collectors who live in modern homes. If you’re interested, contact editor Dave Weinstein before January 5, 2013.
Wednesday December 5, 2012
Last Wednesday Evelyn Ackerman passed away at her home in Culver City. Read her amazing LA Times obituary HERE. If you are not familiar with her life and work, David Keeps authored a wonderful retrospective on her HERE.
Oscar Niemeyer, the architect whose soaring buildings form the heart of Brasilia, the instant modernist capital built in the wilds of Brazil in the late 1950s, has died. He was 104. Read his obituary HERE.
USC's alumni news just profiled architect (from the class of '49) William Krisel HERE.
There's no denying how I feel about Craig Ellwood's work and Case Study Houses in general. To this day with each new blog reference, or even a pinterest or tumblr escapade on Ellwood's Case Study Houses, I get excited. Check out MidCenturyHome's profile of his CSH #18 HERE.
One year after its original publication, one of our intrepid web crawlers found James Newland's profile of Lloyd Ruocco and La Mesa town planning. We offer it as a not-to-be-missed read on our local modernist history HERE.
Modern Vancouver, BC! Check out a great profile of architectural photographer Selwyn Pullan and 16 of his amazing photos of Vancouver's finest HERE.
Wednesday November 21, 2012
Have a Happy Turkey Day tomorrow - from all of us in the palatial Modern San Diego live/work penthouse!
Los Angeles Modern Auctions' 20th Anniversary sale (Part Two) will be held on December 16. Check out the lots online HERE.
HONOLULU MODERN! Intrepid Reporter Dave Hampton set out on a photo-essay reportage of art and architecture in the Aloha State capital HERE.
Modern San Diego will be collaborating with the La Jolla Historical Society on their interest in regional modernism. We will keep you posted on details as they become available.
Thursday November 8, 2012
I am often asked what influenced me to launch Modern San Diego. I am hoping to write a series of essays on that very question over time. The first installment capturing my introduction to two Mission Hills residents - Tom Robertson and Al Gabbs - is posted HERE.
Ebay’s Samuel Collection is auctioning off work by San Diegan Paul Lingren HERE. Artist Paul A. Lingren was born in Nebraska on April 16, 1923. Lingren was a resident of Los Angeles in the 1950s and then taught art for over thirty years at San Diego State University – including serving as Department Chairman. He was a painter and printmaker whose prints are in private and public collections across the world. He died in San Diego on July 3, 1989. Check out the art - new work is being made available for sale nearly daily.
This weekend is Tucson Modernism Week. Check out the site HERE informing you about events this Friday-Sunday.
DesignOnscreen is putting out some great titles...Modern Tide; The Midcentury Architecture of Long Island being their latest. Check out their work HERE.
Wednesday November 7, 2012
Several years ago Robert Mosher, John Henderson, Michael Theilacker, Homer Delawie, Angela Leira, John Henderson, Dick Bundy, Neil Larson and Jack Carpenter collaborated on a text defining Mid-Century Architecture in San Diego. A limited quantity of these publications sought to both define this body of work, and through informing others - protecting the architecture itself. The San Diego Architectural Foundation is seeking donations to support publishing the effort for wider distribution. You can donate HERE.
The Dwell San Diego Home Tour(s) this weekend are Sold Out. And for those that want to keep the theme going – Dwell is moving on… to Silicon Valley. “With pioneers such as Richard Neutra carving out a footprint in the ’30s and Joseph Eichler and other modernist visionaries building prolifically in the ’60s, the associated architectural style predates the widespread use of the area’s now well-known name.” As in San Diego, the magazine will select ten contemporary homes … read more HERE.
If you haven’t stopped by Alan Hess’s site lately – you may have missed a number of his speaking engagements and his latest book. Frank Lloyd Wright: Natural Design, Organic Architecture: Lessons for Building Green from an American Original represents Wright as familiar with how architecture solved the challenges of heating, cooling and illumination in the days before central heat, air-conditioning, and electricity. Visit his site HERE to keep updated on Alan's goings-ons...
Daniel Gregory, author of Cliff May and the Modern Ranch House, will discuss this colorful man and his astounding houses this Thursday November 8, as part of the Neutra House Architectural Speaker Series. Gregory’s talk will take place in Los Altos – if you’re in the neighborhood! Read more HERE.
A new exhibition, 'Soviet Modernism 1955-1991: Unknown Stories,' is launching at Vienna's Architekturzentrum! The show highlights diverse design approaches throughout Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Estonia, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Krygyzstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, the Ukraine and Uzbekistan AKA the former USSR. Read a bit more and check out the slideshow HERE. You can purchase the catalogue HERE.
Tuesday November 6, 2012
Our colleague Dave Hampton recently flew up to see Reflecting On Erik Gronborg, an exhibition of ceramic objects at Portland's Museum of Contemporary Craft. The Museum presented four exhibitions of Gronborg's work between 1967 and 1977, prior to the artist relocating to San Diego – where he has been for the last forty years. Read more HERE.
George Nelson: Architect, Writer, Designer, Teacher, the first comprehensive retrospective devoted to George Nelson (1928–1986), one of the most influential figures in American post-war design, opens at the Yale School of Architecture Gallery this Thursday, November 8. Best known today as the creator of the Marshmallow Sofa, Ball Clock, and Bubble Lamps, Nelson was a gifted and indefatigable visionary who also excelled as an architect, urban planner, exhibition designer, corporate image-maker, and author. The exhibition presents more than 120 examples of his home and office furnishings, as well as 50-plus drawings, photographs, architectural models, films, and other materials that document the full range of his extraordinary achievement. If you are planning to be near the Yale campus in the coming weeks or months, check out their site HERE.
Yutsai Wang, an LA-based architectural photographer in Los Angeles, recently entered a photograph of Louis Kahn’s Salk Institute, in La Jolla, in an architectural photography competition sponsored by the Palm Springs Modernism Week. Wang, who considers Salk architect Kahn “the most important architect in the 20th century” just beat out 399 others. Read more HERE.
Five Thot just posted 'House Porn: A. Quincy Jones., Architect. Modernist.' including some pretty great photos HERE.
Monday November 5, 2012
You can't swing a dead cat by the tail, on the web, without running into yet another 'mid-century' blog, site, tumblr etc. Check out this new one (for me) capturing Smith & Williams' Booth Residence HERE.
The Palm Springs Art Museum Architecture and Design Center’s Edwards Harris Pavilion is going to stand out. The museum is embarking on a campaign to raise $1.5 million to renovate E. Stewart Williams’ Santa Fe Federal Savings (ca. 1960). Read more HERE.
On Tuesday, November 13, at 7 p.m., Richard Neutra’s son, architect Dion Neutra, will discuss his father’s work and philosophy when he presents “Neutra Architecture: The View From Inside” at the AIA North Carolina Center for Architecture and Design in downtown Raleigh, NC. A partner in his father’s firm, Dion will share his personal and professional views of the sensitivity to the relationship of man and nature that he and his father called bio-realism. If you are planning to be in the area click HERE first!
According to the New York Times, “John M. Johansen, a celebrated modernist architect and the last surviving member of the Harvard Five, a group that made New Canaan, Conn., a hotbed of architectural experimentation in the 1950s and ’60s, died Friday in Brewster, Mass. He was 96.” Johansen studied under Walter Gropius, the founder of Germany’s Bauhaus school, at Harvard. In 1948 John opened his office in New Canaan, joining four other young modernist architects — Philip Johnson, Marcel Breuer, Landis Gores, and Eliot Noyes – the five-man architectural movement became widely recognized for designing structures conveying the optimism of the time. Read more HERE.
Sunday November 4, 2012
We spend a fair amount of time each year in Cape Cod. Beyond bicycling, swimming and eating loads of seafood, we hunt down post-war modern homes like the Hatch House. The National Post provides a good outline of what was going on... read the article HERE.
When The Atlantic posts an article titled 'What It Was Like to Work for Charles and Ray Eames?', one has to read it! Check it out HERE.
For the moment the David & Gladys Wright Residence by the client's father, Frank Lloyd Wright, has been spared from the wrecking ball. The New York Times chronicles the story and outlines how (potentially) historic sites are always, seemingly, at risk. Read the story HERE.
Saturday November 3, 2012
San Diego Magazine profiled the owners of Loch Crane's Milton Fillius Residence (1952) in Point Loma. The cul-de-sac boasts four Crane designs! Read the article HERE.
The Los Angeles Times' review of ‘Greta Magnusson Grossman: A Car and Some Short features this great quote: “She was a major player in the 1940s and '50s, a media darling pictured alongside Charles Eames and Isamu Noguchi, and poof, she disappears,” said Evan Snyderman, the furniture dealer and co-owner of R 20th Century in New York, the gallery that acquired Grossman’s archives and sells vintage Grossman pieces. “She walked away from the world of design, built a home in San Diego and started painting landscapes.” Read the full article HERE.
Sunday October 3, 2012
In May 2012, the National Endowment for the Humanities awarded the Indianapolis Museum of Art $190,000 for its project “Documenting Modern Living: Digitizing the Miller House and Garden Collection.” The Miller House and Garden Collection includes correspondence, drawings and blueprints, textile samples, and photographs that document design, construction, and maintenance of the Miller House and Garden in Columbus, Indiana. Check out the site HERE.
The David Wright Residence, by father Frank Lloyd Wright, built in 1952 in Phoenix is under threat of demolition by a local developer. Read more HERE.
Sunday September 30, 2012
The Getty Foundation is planning to launch mini Pacific Standard Time in 2013 with Los Angeles area museums focusing on architecture. Between April 9–July 21, 2013, the Getty will present Overdrive: L.A. Constructs the Future, 1940–1990. This dynamic exhibition will provide an engaging view of the region's diverse urban landscape, including its ambitious freeway network, sleek corporate towers, whimsical coffee shops, popular shopping malls, refined steel-and-glass residences, and eclectic cultural institutions. Eight other shows that will launch at the same time will be Building the California Dream: A. Quincy Jones and His Circle at the Hammer Museum, A Windshield Perspective: The Framing of L.A. Architecture and Urbanism at the A+D Architecture and Design Museum, Technology and the Environment: The Post War House in Southern California at Cal Poly Pomona's Kellogg University Art Gallery, Everything Loose Will Land at the MAK Center for Art and Architecture, A New Sculpturalism: Contemporary Architecture From Southern California at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, The Architecture Gallery, Venice, CA, 1979 at the Southern California Institute of Architecture, Machines and Gardens: The Architecture of Whitney Smith and Smith and Williams, 1941-1973 at the University Art Museum at UC Santa Barbara and Reinventing LACMA: Peter Zumthor and the Presence of the Past at LACMA.
I am looking into the possibility of creating a mini film festival around mid-century architecture. If I bring any/all of these films to town – would you go? hmm… In the meantime check out the individual film trailers of Coast Modern, Clean Lines, Open Spaces, People in Glass Houses: The Legacy of Joseph Eichler, Journeyman Architect: The Life and Work of Donald Wexler, and William Krisel, Architect.
For those that have followed Gene Weston's career, you may not have read a fantastic piece he, along with David Curry, wrote about his amazing career. Check it out HERE.
Check out this slideshow - a complete 1964 Howard Miller Lighting Catalog.
Wright posted the online catalog for their Modern Design auction slated for October 18 HERE.
Woodbury School of Architecture’s WUHO Gallery is teaming up with the Julius Shulman Institute to present Inside Marina City: A Project by Iker Gil and Andreas E.G. Larsson between October 4-28. For more than two years, Gil and Larsson documented the lives of residents in the non-Euclidean geometries of architect Bertrand Goldberg’s iconic Marina City (1959-67) in Chicago. Celebrating Goldberg's original vision for affordable apartments in a central, high-density location, this revealing series of photographs provides a rare, behind-the-scenes tour of the diverse array of people and living spaces within these popular cylindrical residential towers. Learn more HERE.
Thursday September 27, 2012
Head over to the San Diego Airport's Terminal Two Baggage Claim area to see Dave Hampton's 'Snapshot in Sculpture' show - whether or not you have a flight or someone to pick up!
The Escondido History Center is hosting their second Adobe Home Tour on Sunday, October 14th. Three of the 4 homes on the tour were built by the Weir Bros. including the Bob Weir, Hotchkiss and Julian Kaufman residences. Ticket information is HERE.
Sunday September 23, 2012
Modern San Diego is among the presenting sponsors of this year's Art of Photography show. Learn more HERE.
Hidden along the tree-lined boulevards of Claremont, CA featuring Victorian, Spanish Revival and Craftsman architecture, are modernist masterpieces by the likes of Richard Neutra, Fred McDowell, Theodore Criley Jr., Millard Sheets, A. Quincy Jones, Cliff May, Foster Rhodes Jackson, and Edward Durell Stone. This week’s CLAREMONT MODERN SYMPOSIUM will look at the Modern resources that inhabit Claremont and nearby communities to educate and inform how they might be preserved for future generations. The Claremont Modern Symposium Thursday, September 27 at Claremont University Consortium's Administrative Campus Center, 101 S. Mills Avenue. Speakers include authors Barbara Lamprecht, Alan Hess and Hicks Stone. Learn more HERE.
Next Saturday, September 29th Claremont Heritage is offering a special presentation by Hicks Stone – son and biographer of architect Edward Durrell Stone. Hicks will speak on his father’s work and discuss the impact he had in Claremont. From the iconic Kresge Chapel and campus master plan at Claremont School of Theology (1963) as well as the master plan for Harvey Mudd College (1959). Following the presentation, Stone will sign his book Edward Durell Stone - A Son's Untold Story of a Legendary Architect published by Rizzoli. Learn more HERE.
Thursday September 20, 2012
Rent Richard Neutra's former office! Check it out HERE.
Proud of your mid-century kitchen? Enter it in a contest HERE.
Studio E drafted a list of their favorite buildings in San Diego - and we agree. The list is HERE.
MOMA has launched Century of the Child: Growing by Design 1900-2000. Check it out HERE.
Los Angeles Modern Auctions has posted their new catalog HERE.
The online catalog for Rago's 'Discovery' auction has been posted HERE.
Next Sunday The Museum of California Design is hosting a benefit. Buy tickets HERE.
Sunday September 16, 2012
Many thanks to Modern San Diego visitor Chris Armstrong, of Koch-Armstrong General Engineering Inc., for sending along vintage photographs of Cliff May's Vista Del Loma tract! Check them out on the Cliff May page HERE.
Palm Springs Modernism Week organizers are giving fans of modernism a mid-year fling as they participate in DOCOMOMO National Tour Day on October 8. The folks at Modernism Week will offer an October version of their Double Decker Architecture Bus Tour as well as 4-days of other events. Learn more HERE.
Ever wonder what John Lautner, Craig Ellwood, Ray Kappe, and Charles Eames were like – in their own words? SCI-Arc’s media archive has posted interviews with these and other modernist luminaries to their site HERE.
Photographer Pedro Guerrero, who starting in 1939 spent a half-century capturing Frank Lloyd Wright’s architecture on film, recently died at his home in Florence, Arizona. He was 95. Read more HERE.
Sunday September 9, 2012
The 'Daves' as in Hampton and Skelley appeared on KUSI and oh...it's that good. Check 'em out HERE.
The entire Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation archive is moving permanently to New York in an unusual joint partnership between the Museum of Modern Art and Columbia University’s Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library, where it will become more accessible to the public for viewing and scholarship. Read more HERE.
Saturday September 1 , 2012
The Los Angeles chapter of the AIA is hosting a series of one-off home tours. The Modernist/Contemporary Tour launches Sept. 23 in Santa Monica with a tour of Harwell Hamilton Harris' John Entenza Residence; two small Rudolph Schindler homes in Inglewood built in 1940; a Schindler apartment; and a Gregory Ain designed apartment. Read more HERE.
Pat Caughey will be lecturing on landscape architects Harriett Wimmer and Joe Yamada on October 20th for the Friends of San Diego Architecture. Read more HERE.
Looking to remodel? Studio E is providing free consultations. Learn more HERE.
UC Santa Barbara’s Art Design & Architecture Museum will be opening a new exhibition on the firm of Smith and Williams on April 13, 2013. Keep up to date HERE.
Sunday August 26, 2012
In an effort to identify all of the Hester, Jones & Associates American Housing Guild Subdivision houses, I am compiling information, photographs and addresses HERE.
While writer Susan Morgan was working Piecing Together Los Angeles: An Esther McCoy Reader and, co-curating Sympathetic Seeing: Esther McCoy and the Heart of American Modernist Architecture and Design, she discovered a 16mm print of a film by Esther McCoy. Her 1965 film, directed by Buckminster Fuller’s son-in-law Robert Snyder, on Irving Gill’s Dodge House, had been in storage for decades. The restored short film can be viewed HERE.
Thursday August 23, 2012
The Huntington just posted a new video, ‘The Maynard Parker Collection’ HERE. The image 'Model House, San Diego 1950' is an A. Quincy Jones 'Sun Villa'!
Rago's 'Discovery' auction online preview goes live today HERE.
Wright's next sale, 'Living Contemporary', happens on September 27. Learn more HERE.
Los Angeles Modern Auction's (LAMA) blog is always a fun read. Check it out HERE.
Sothebys' next (related to this site) auction - Important 20th Century Design - will be held on December 12.
Modernica's blog is always full-up with interesting finds. Check it out HERE.
Saturday August 18, 2012
Our good friend Michael Good just posted a nice profile of Kurt Schuette - owner of Homer Delawie's second personal residence. Check it out HERE.
For ART SAN DIEGO 2012, Objects USA will present Maximum SD Vintage, a collection of works made exclusively by local painters and sculptors during the 50s and 60s. While focused on a select group of artists, such as Fred Holle, James Hubbell, Sheldon Kirby, Bob Matheny and Russell Baldwin, Maximum SD Vintage still features a diverse range of works that includes abstract expressionist paintings, hard edge constructions, and sculpture in wrought iron, wood and bronze – all of it local, all of it vintage. Curated by Dave Hampton, Maximum SD Vintage is designed to acquaint collectors with local art history by illuminating some of its most dynamic participants in a relaxed, modern setting, made complete by the furniture of Charles Eames. Learn more HERE.
Friday August 17, 2012
New York architecture firm Ike Kligerman Barkley just blogged about us HERE. Architect John Ike is a passionate comrade!
Voice of San Diego writer Kelly Bennett just posted a unique twist on the Timken Museum in Balboa Park. She unfolds a parrallel between the contemporary struggle with the Plaza de Panama remodel and how a modernist building quaked the boots of the City in a similar fashion five decades ago HERE. Also read our article on the Timken HERE.
The Museum of California Design just launched their latest show ‘California’s Designing Women: 1896-1986’ – a new exhibition at The Autry open through January 6, 2013. This unprecedented exhibition focuses on the work of 46 of the many exceptional women who, working state-wide from San Francisco to San Diego, helped define California Design. Check out the Autry site HERE and the MOCAD site HERE.
Fans of Ira Glass' This American Life on NPR may know that he broadcasts from Chicago's WBEZ. WBEZ's blog just profiled Edward Durrell Stone's residence hall at the University of Chicago campus - now that's American living! Check it out HERE.
Saturday August 11, 2012
It's Saturday - and there's much to do!
Wednesday August 8, 2012
San Diego-based master architect Arthur Decker’s showpiece originally commissioned for Daily Californian editor Cy Casady is now publicly available for the first time since being nestled in its wooded, north-facing Mount Helix location. As one of his favorite works, Mr. Decker purchased this unique home from Mr. Casady and would raise his family and enjoy the rest of his life overlooking the El Cajon valley from the residence’s living room-wide wall of glass. This open, bright, expansive example of regional mid-century modernism retains its sleek original flair. As a rarity these days to find such a pristine example of post-War architecture saved from the clutches of remodelers, flippers, and careless owners, this two-owner home is in museum-quality condition – just bring your ideas for furnishing, entertaining, and creating your own store of memories. Learn more HERE.
Sunday July 29, 2012
Rest in Peace: Southern California painter Karl Benjamin rose to fame in 1959 as a member of "Four Abstract Classicists" a landmark exhibition — also featuring the work of Lorser Feitelson, John McLaughlin and Frederick Hammersley — that offered the L.A. artists' hard-edge abstractions as an alternative to the East Coast's relatively emotional Abstract Expressionism. He was 86. Read more HERE.
‘Clairemont: The Village within a City’ an upcoming self-driven tour will showcase 40 of Clairemont's sites. Learn more and purchase your tickets HERE.
Tuesday July 24, 2012
Murata Pearl Village was designed by Hayahiko Takase while he worked for Kajima Associates in Los Angeles, following his MA from Harvard Graduate School of Design (1956) and time with Skidmore Owings & Merrill (’57-’59) and Minoru Yamasaki & Associates (‘59-’61).
I posted an introductory page on Roger Matthews HERE. I am looking for any more leads on his life/work.
Los Angeles Modern Auctions has set October 7 as the date for their next sale. Read more HERE.
Saturday July 21, 2012
Lawrence “Larry” Weir, a designer of numerous adobe houses in San Diego County and helped restore the Mission San Antonio de Pala in 1958, died July 11 of heart failure. He was 87. Son of Patrick Weir and Stella Bourgeois, Larry was born in Chicago on November 5, 1924. He served in the Navy from 1939 to 1946, where, during World War II he delivered supplies and briefly served as an aircraft gunner in the South Pacific. Following military service he moved to San Diego and with his three older brothers started Weir Brothers Construction, quickly establishing themselves as pioneers in adobe construction. In 1964 he started his own company Larry Weir Adobe. His firm operated for about four decades and built homes across the county, including Rancho Santa Fe, Escondido, Encinitas and Poway. Modern San Diego strives to build a comprehensive list of Weir projects HERE.
Sunday July 15, 2012
Please drop by Modern San Diego Real Estate for our daily updates and consider using us to buy your next home or sell your current residence. Locally, recent listings to hit the market include works by Ken Kellogg, Henry Hester, Sim Bruce Richards, Art Loring, Homer Delawie, A. Quincy Jones, Gilbert Hinthorne, William Krisel, Joe Kowalski, Harwell Hamilton Harris, Richard 'Dick' Leitch, George Eckel, Russell Forester, William Rosser and others.
On August 11, SOHO’s Modernism Committee, along with local historian and long-time Clairemont resident Alexander D. Bevil, will present ‘Clairemont: The Village within a City.’ This self-driven tour seeks to highlight the architectural treasures of one of the nation's first and largest planned postwar communities. The tour will showcase 40 of Clairemont's sites including libraries, schools, religious institutions, and residential neighborhoods. Registration begins at 9:30am with a lecture and orientation beginning at 10am. Purchase your tickets HERE.
With summer in full swing, perhaps you are planning a visit to a National
Park. Check out Mission 66's 'Modern Architecture in the National Parks'
site HERE and get more insight on his Wiki HERE.
The Pasadena Museum of California Art will offer the (first-ever) touring show, ‘Greta Magnusson Grossman: A Car and Some Shorts’, a survey of work by pioneering architect and designer Greta Magnusson Grossman (1906-1999). Beginning with her education and early career as one of a handful of female designers defining Swedish Modernism in the 1930s, the exhibition chronicles her meteoric rise upon settling in Los Angeles, where she received prestigious commissions from such firms as Barker Bros. and Ralph O. Smith, and began her career as an architect exemplifying the California modernist style. To Grossman, modern design was “not a superimposed style, but an answer to present conditions… developed out of our preferences for living in a modern way.” Although Grossman abruptly withdrew from the design world in the 1960s, her most iconic designs still today reflect the unique and fertile period of midcentury Los Angeles. The show will run October 28, 2012 - February 24, 2013.
Wednesday June 20, 2012
Late last month, we lost a stalwart Southern California artist. Ceramic artist, painter, poet and teacher Malcolm "Mac" McClain passed away at the age of 89 without fanfare. For McClain, who never cared for the spotlight and whose career was overshadowed by his ceramic art contemporaries, John Mason and Paul Soldner, the recenty wave of Pacific Standard Time exhibitions provided some last-minute recognition. Read Dave Hampton's profile of Mac HERE.
One of the seven original Don Wexler/Harrison Steel Development Houses in Palm Springs has just joined the list of National Register of Historic Places. Read more HERE.
I posted an introductory page on La Mesa area builder George Eckel HERE. As always, I am looking for any more leads on his projects.
Sunday June 17, 2012
Modern San Diego 'Meet Up'. Architect Richard 'Dick' Lareau met with fans of his architecture and several owners of his residential designs at the Sheldon Residence yesterday. Thanks to all who attended!
Join us at 3200 Sixth Avenue today between 1-4 p.m. to preview two condos in Henry Hester's Salomon Apartments (ca. 1959).
Tuesday June 5, 2012
After all these years I finally launched a page on Irving Gill HERE.
As part of San Diego's early 1960s counterculture, Richard Allen Morris and his friends, Guy Williams and Malcolm "Mac" McClain, were painters as well as prolific poets. In fact, there was quite a tradition of local painters working or exhibiting at the Bargain Bookstore, Vroman's downtown, and the Nexus in La Jolla. Dave Hampton’s latest piece for Culture Lust explores local artists’ poetry of the era HERE.
I updated the Greta Magnusson Grossman page HERE.
It is always a treat to find a Homer Delawie home right under your nose. Thanks to agent Gabe Filkey, we reviewed plans for 'Del Cerro Residence Study' by Delawie AIA Architects, San Diego, California (November, 1961). Located at 5657 Del Cerro Avenue, this home was designed for Schreiber Const. Co. and includes a 1968 'Addition to the Mr. & Mrs. Raymond C. Adler Residence by James E. Hurley AIBD, Building Designer'. Learn more HERE.
Thursday May 31, 2012
Of the house pictured above, Barbara Greaves wrote: “One of Ruocco’s most dramatic, and most talked about, designs is this spectacular circular home, belonging to Mr. and Mrs. Isadore Jacobson, in Mt. Helix. Built to take advantage of a U-shaped lot, the home commandes a 360-degree view of the surrounding valley. ‘Moving into it was like going onto a different planet,’ its owners comment.” At the time, James Britton commented "There’s been a lot of nonsense written about the Southern California way of life, but the basic fact remains that elements of it have changed the manner of living for many Americans. Set down in a new and friendlier climate and eager to cast off the bonds imposed by the rigorous weather of the states they had left behind, the new natives experimented, made their houses and their gardens different from the rigid patterns to which their fathers and their fathers before them had conformed." Certainly that is food for thought...
MODERN SAN DIEGO REAL ESTATE: Join us for open houses this weekend at 3200 Sixth Avenue to see our listing (photographed below) for a 3-bedroom condo lease. We will be showing the property from 10a-12p on Friday (6/1) and between 1-3pm on Saturday (6/2). Stop by and say hello!
P.B. MODERN! - We updated our Pacific Beach page HERE. While updating this section I learned about the Fred Johnson House – his own design (ca. 1966) at 4856 Noyes. While I do not have a full picture of Johnson’s work – here is what I do know about him: Frederick Arthur Johnson was born in Los Angeles on June 17, 1916 and finished his education at Los Angeles City College in 1936. He joined the local AIA chapter in 1956 after which he ran the firms Johnson & Anderson (1959-62), Fred A. Johnson & Associates (1962-68) and Johnson & Munroe (from ’68 on). The latter was located in a pretty cool little building at 2828 Fourth Ave. The firms designed Western Lumber Co. Offices in National City (ca. 1960), Florence Elementary School (1962), Bell Jr. High School (1968) and Coronado’s Fire Dept. Headquarters in 1970. If you know anything about his life/career, please drop me an email HERE.
EL CAJON MODERN! - We updated our El Cajon page HERE.
Rago is holding its next Modern auction on June 17. Check out the catalog HERE.
Christie's is holding its next Important 20th Century Decorative Art & Design auction on June 14. Check out the catalog HERE.
The Los Angeles Review of Books posted a dual review of Architecture of the Sun : Los Angeles Modernism 1900-1970, and Sympathetic Seeing : Esther McCoy and the Heart of America and Living in a Modern Way : California Design 1930-1965 HERE.
MODERN SAN DIEGO REAL ESTATE: 3-bedroom, 3-bath condo lease at 3200
Sunday May 20, 2012
Also, I updated our Escondido page HERE.
Wright's next 'Important Design' auction is June 7. Check it out HERE.
Friday May 18, 2012
Despite Palm Springs preservationists, students and parents urging Palm Springs Unified School District Board of Education to not demolish the administration building designed by Donald Wexler and Richard Harrison in 1957, the district replace it with a new 9,000-square-foot Performing Arts Building post-modern structure replete with Spanish style arches! Read more HERE.
The Dwell-Lego-Pacific-Standard-Time toy modern homes contest finalists have been posted HERE.
Friday May 11, 2012
While on a trek around the County to find Russell Forester's larger-scale works, the staff at La Jolla Country Day School were delightfully proud of their Russel Forester inventory. While Forester's fountain has been disassembled (and awaiting reconfiguration on the grounds), 'Unfinished Man' has been simply relocated and attractively lit in the evening.
Dave Hampton's Contemporary Art Wins a Beachead is still on view at the Oceanside Museum of Art (through July 8). Please check it out. Read more HERE.
John Baldessari: A Print Retrospective comes down this Sunday. Check it out this weekend! Read more HERE.
The Los Angeles Modern Auctions' 'Modern Art & Design Auction' results from Sunday (and remaining unsold items) are posted HERE.
At the request of CityBeat editors, I penned a quick 'n' dirty self-guided tour of the area's mid-century curiosities. Check it out HERE.
Wednesday May 2, 2012
Vanity Fair writer Paul Goldberger has stated something about modernist architecture that should turn a few (political) heads. Not only does he hope that better heads prevail in the debate over Paul Rudolph’s Orange County Government Center, he rationalizes that destroying a modernist structure reflects on the sad state of contemporary politics! Here’s a taste: …If Orange County destroys an important building of the late 20th century to build that, it won’t just be demolishing a major work of Paul Rudolph’s. It will be rejecting the high ambitions and noble intentions Rudolph wanted his building to symbolize. But maybe that’s just the point. In the age of the Tea Party, who wants a government building that was designed to suggest dignity, creativity, innovation, and belief in the new? Government is supposed to be curtailing its ambitions, and doing as much as it can to disappear. This is not architecture for an invisible government. It’s a building that flaunts its idealism. And it demands a lot from you. If the Orange County Government Center is demolished, Orange County will have figured out a whole new way to carry out the agenda of the anti-government era: by not just getting rid of government programs, but getting rid of a work of architecture whose very essence symbolizes a time when government sought to be a creative force. Read the full article HERE.3Lloyd Wright's Moore Residence in Palos Verdes Estates is no more. Following a 3-year study, and little support from the neighbors that seem to revel in their empty spanish, colonial, and italian facades and granite countertops, the owner who, seemed to dislike his own house which he refers to as 'art', bulldozed it. Enjoy the stomachache that THIS ARTICLE offers.
High in the La Jolla hills be prepared to be transported back to the era of mid-century elegance as you enter the John F. O’Laughlin Residence, designed by architect Loch Crane in 1962. Through the careful use of indoor-outdoor spaces, Loch Crane, a student of Frank LLoyd Wright, designed this unique home for a client seeking privacy and serenity while at the same time enveloping the home and garden with a panoramic 180 degree ocean view. Blue water views beckon from each room including the master bedroom. The house features large picture windows, and high, light wooden ceillings throughout, and a magnificent floor plan. This unique example of Crane’s work is in pristine condition and has not been structurally modified. Fixture and appliance upgrades harmonize with the home's mid-century design. The home’s second, and last, owner lovingly cared for it since 1968. Available for sale (for $1,800,000) or lease ($3,950/month).
Come visit our next open house on Wednesday, May 2 between 9:30 a.m. - 12 p.m. at 5972 Avenida Chamnez 92037
Friday April 27, 2012
What are the odds that Baghdad Gymnasium designed by Le Corbusier in 1957 would survive decades of war? Grad student Caecilia Pieri discovered the forgotten structure in 2005 while working on her thesis on modern architecture in Baghdad. Reporting her findings to the authorities, the building is now engaging a wider public worldwide. Read more HERE.
Sam Lubell, author of Julius Shulman Los Angeles, posted a nice self-guided tour of key Los Angeles landmarks made famous through the deceased architectural photographers’ lens. Follow his path HERE.
Tuesday April 10, 2012
The Mingei blog hit it out of the park this week as Martha E. stepped back from exhibitions to consider a myriad of connections one doesn't grasp on first view. Walk through LACMA's and Mingei's Pacific Standard Time contributions HERE.
We hope you had a chance to view 'Mid-Century Modern in San Diego' on KPBS. If you missed the debut screening, repeats are scheduled on April 12 at 11:30pm, the 15th at 3:00am and 12:00pm, as well as April 29th at 11:30 pm (all on KPBS-TV). Set the DVR or you can view it online HERE.
Saturday April 7, 2012
SET THE DVR: KPBS-TV series San Diego's Historic Places’ next episode is titled ‘Mid-Century Modern In San Diego’. Featuring a look at a few homes by Sim Bruce Richards, John Mock and Craig Ellwood, the survey of our little niche debuts on Monday, April 9 at 9pm.
With Paul Rudolph's Orange County Government Center in Goshen, N.Y. in peril, The Times took the opportunity to outline why modernist structures are not long for this world HERE.
Rago is holding its next Discovery auction on Friday, April 20. Check out the catalog HERE.
Wright is hosting their Living Contemporary auction on April 26. Check out the catalog HERE.
Save the Date(s) - Sotheby's Important 20th Century Design auction will be on June 13 and LA Modern Auctions' online catalog goes live on April 20 HERE.
Wednesday April 4, 2012
“Contemporary Art Wins a Beachhead: The La Jolla School of Arts 1960-64,” now on view at Oceanside Museum of Art, is a tribute to the Art Center’s school, which only lasted four years, but paved the way for what is now MCASD-LJ. Curated by Dave Hampton, an expert in mid-20th-century California art and design, this is the kind of show you might have seen at the Art Center 50 years ago. Read more HERE.
Thanks to Curbed LA and Paradise Leased, I learned of the Joseph C. Schumacher Residence (ca. 1956) by architect Philmer J. Ellerbroek. Not only is the house interesting, but how often is it that you learn of yet another architect you never heard of… Check out the Curbed article HERE and the Paradise Leased piece HERE.
Friday March 30, 2012
Close out San Diego’s Craft Revolution with an insider’s look at how it all came together on April 5. By focusing on members of the Allied Craftsman group, the Mingei International Museum exhibition explores San Diego craft from 1940s modernism to the funk and post-modernism of the 1970s. Learn how curator Dave Hampton’s ten years of research informed this show, and how it has created new interest in this often overlooked period of San Diego’s art history. RSVP HERE.
Some argue that modernist Paul Rudolph's work has been particularly hard by ignorant developers, real estate agents and home owners alike. Read a great article on the hows and whys of destroying his legacy HERE.
Hire Modern San Diego Real Estate to Buy or Sell a home HERE.
Friday March 23, 2012
An update on the March 24 'modern home tour' can be found HERE.
On Sunday, March 25, Pasadena Heritage is offering "American Modern: USC Style and Beyond," a tour highlighting the work of graduates and teachers of USC's School of Architecture. Stops include the post-and-beam Thomson House by Buff, Straub & Hensman; the DeSteiguer House, designed by Harwell Hamilton Harris in 1936 and moved to its current location by Leland Evison in 1951; and a Park Planned home designed by Gregory Ain in 1947-48 in neighboring Altadena. Learn more HERE.
The Society of Architectural Historians' Southern California Chapter is hosting a tour featuring the residential work of Ray Kappe between 1956-66. On May 26, the SAH-SCC will showcase the Phineas Kappe Residence (1956), the Dr. and Mrs. Robert Hayes Residence (1959), the Barsha Residence (1961), Handman Residence (1963) and Butnik Residence (1966). The price of entry includes an 8-page tour brochure. Learn more HERE.
Currently under revision, Modernist Architecture in San Diego will soon be available for purchase. For information about sponsoring its publication, or to receive a .pdf version of the guide, please contact email@example.com. Learn more HERE.
The Getty is launching a new international program, the Conserving Modern Architecture Initiative, in hopes of giving preservation architects new and more sophisticated strategies to shore up 20th century buildings. Learn more about the Getty Conservation Institute HERE.
Dwell has joined forces with Pacific Standard Time to challenge consumers to construct a model of an original home inspired by iconic California mid-century modern architecture. Your building material? LEGO bricks. Looking for inspiration – check out Stacy Sterling’s LEGO skills HERE. You have until March 29th to submit. Read more HERE.
Edward Cella Art+Architecture is launching a new show, PLANEfurniture, the gallery’s first exhibition of contemporary furniture and the debut of designer and collector, Michael Boyd. The exhibition opens on Saturday, April 28 and extends through June 16, 2012. A conversation will take place with Michael Boyd and design critic Michael Webb on Saturday, May 12, 2012 at 4pm. Learn more HERE.
The Palm Springs Art Museum plans to create an architecture and design exhibition and study space by restoring E. Stewart Williams’s 1960 Santa Fe Federal Savings and Loan. The renamed Palm Springs Art Museum’s Edwards Harris Center for Architecture and Design will open in fall 2013. Read more HERE.
Arguably I am still upset about the callous demolition of Poway’s Christian Science church by its owners – who oddly favor a larger, more pedestrian complex of banal, and therefore not uplifting, rooms and parking lots. With Edward Durrell Stone’s new biography, penned by his son architect Hicks Stone, being recently released, it is tempting to mail an anonymous copy to the church leaders in hopes they would seek penance for their sins. Learn more about the new book HERE and the 2006 demolition of one of the single most important 20th structures in the entire County HERE.
Imagine a house constructed in less than forty-eight hours, without using lumber or nails, that is more resistant to fire, earthquakes, and hurricanes than any traditionally built structure. This may sound like the latest development in prefab housing or green architecture, but the design dates back to 1941 when architect Wallace Neff (1895–1982) developed Airform construction as a solution to the global housing crisis. Best known for his elegant Spanish Colonial–revival estates in Southern California, Neff had a private passion for his dome-shaped "bubble houses" made of reinforced concrete cast in position over an inflatable balloon. No Nails, No Lumber shows the beauty and versatility of Neff's design in new and vintage photography, previously unpublished illustrations, and archival material and ephemera. Read more HERE and purchase the book HERE.
Saturday March 17, 2012
During Friday’s lecture ‘Spirit as an Expression of New Architecture’, Norm Applebaum outlined his influences as Frank Lloyd Wright, Bernard Maybeck, Harwell Hamilton Harris, RM Schindler, John Lautner, Cal Straub and Cliff May. Applebaum brought May, who’s Carefree California exhibit is on view through June 17, to San Diego to see some of his homes towards the end of his life. Read more about Norm HERE and May’s exhibit HERE.
A. Quincy Jones’ Sunnylands Estate may be free and open to the public but you still need to buy a ticket in advance. Tickets for the month of March sold out quickly. Tickets just went on sale for tour dates between April 2-15 so grab ‘em HERE.
East of Borneo Books just released Piecing Together Los Angeles: An Esther McCoy Reader. Edited by Susan Morgan, the anthology is the first collection of writings by Esther McCoy (1904-89), the groundbreaking architectural historian who articulated the concepts and vibrant character of West Coast modernism as it was being created. This essential volume includes out-of-print essays, articles, and short stories, as well as hitherto unpublished lectures, correspondence, and memoirs that together illuminate the breadth and complexity of McCoy’s groundbreaking work. The book coincides with recent exhibition (co-curated by Morgan) at the MAK Center for Art and Architecture. After completing a wartime stint as an engineering draftsman at Douglas Aircraft, McCoy went to work as an architectural draftsman for R. M. Schindler and, by 1945, her attentive writing had turned significantly to architecture and design. Throughout Arts & Architecture’s legendary Case Study House program, she chronicled midcentury modernism. Her essays also appeared regularly in the Los Angeles Times, Zodiac, Progressive Architecture, and Architectural Forum. Rejected by the Guggenheim Foundation when she sought research support for Five California Architects in 1953, McCoy finally published it in 1960 - her groundbreaking book that remains a seminal volume on California architecture. Over the next 50 years, McCoy worked variously as an author, editorial scout, lecturer, and exhibition curator. Her final essay, commissioned for the exhibition Blueprints for Modern Living: History and Legacy of the Case Study Houses (MOCA, Los Angeles), was published one month before her death in 1989. More on the book can be found HERE.
Tuesday March 13, 2012
The Les & Lilli Hill Residence by Henry Hester (and Fred Livingstone) is a 2-bed, 2-bath 2,300 sq ft home on .4 acres. Abutting a huge City-owned canyon, the home’s backyard feels like it is on a 4-acre lot! Inside the home are original images (ca. 1970) by Julius Shulman as well as the original renderings (ca. 1969). Published (ca. 1975) in Los Angeles Times’ Home Magazine, the home features much of the original art (by Lilli Hill and other San Diegans) and furniture.Check out Modern San Diego Real Estate for updates on this very special property HERE.
The Summit, designed by architect Tibor Fecskes (and completed in 1965) was briefly the tallest building in San Francisco. Joseph Eichler, best known for his development of midcentury homes, is rarely associated with high-end high-rises. The Summit attests to Eichler’s contribution to San Francisco’s skyline. Read more HERE.
If you’re planning on visiting Charlotte any time soon, check out the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art’s new show "Mid-Century Modernism: 1957 and the Bechtler Collection". The exhibition is comprised of 41 works by 28 artists (including Max Ernst, Alfred Manessier, Barbara Hepworth, Robert Muller, Alberto Giacometti and Hans Hartung), acquired primarily in 1957, from the museum's permanent collection. Read more HERE.
Frank Lloyd Wright indulged a young Jim Berger’s request for a dog house in 1956 and sent him designs for the structure. The structure, located in the backyard of the Berger Residence (ca. 1950) in San Anselmo for many years, until it was thrown out (by the then-dogless elder owner) has made the news. Read more HERE.
Jack Rutberg Fine Arts is currently hosting “Claire Falkenstein: An Expansive Universe”, an exhibition to celebrate the first major publication on her work - Claire Falkenstein. The book includes essays by art historians Susan M. Anderson and Maren Henderson, art writer and curator Michael Duncan, and an introduction by Philip Linhares, President of the Falkenstein Foundation and former Chief Curator of Art at the Oakland Museum of California. Beyond the gallery’s business hours, on March 24 at 6:30 pm they will host a conversation and book signing with the authors. Read more HERE.
The Oakland Museum of California is currently offering a retrospective on the work of pioneer jeweler Margaret De Patta. A seminal figure in the American Modernist Jewelry movement, De Patta ia distinguished as one of the few American jewelers whose work and ideas were allied to the evolving ideas presented in the modern art movement, De Patta’s work was heavily influenced by the Constructivists and features architectural forms with simple lines, structure, and often movable parts. Space-Light-Structure: The Jewelry of Margaret De Patta features more than 60 jewelry pieces as well as ceramics, flatware, photographs, pictograms, and newly released archival material. Learn more HERE.
Saturday March 10, 2012
Distinguished architect Norm Applebaum will survey his 40 year catalog of residential designs in Spirit as an Expression of New Architecture. Join Norm in the San Diego Museum of Art's Copley Auditorium on March 16 @ 10 a.m. for this exciting event. Read more HERE.
Wright has posted their March 29th Modern Design auction catalog HERE.
Check out Modern San Diego Real Estate (!) HERE.
The 2012 San Diego Modern Home Tour, set for March 24, is posted HERE.
Saturday March 3, 2012
The La Jolla School of Arts played a significant role in the acceptance of new modes of painting and sculpture in San Diego, winning a beachhead for contemporary art in the 1960s amongst a largely conservative community. As part of the Art Center in La Jolla, now known as the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, the school brought together a highly regarded group of artist-instructors during a pivotal time in the Art Center's development. A new Oceanside Museum of Art exhibition, Contemporary Art Wins a Beachhead, The La Jolla School of Arts 1960-1964, focuses on the work of six key members of the School’s faculty, with paintings by Don Dudley, Fred Holle, Sheldon Kirby and Guy Williams, ceramics by Rhoda Lopez, and ceramics and paintings by Malcolm McClain. The show, which is guest curated by Dave Hampton, runs through July 8. Read more HERE.
Following World War II, western New York became a bit of a hub for innovative craft that inspired artists elsewhere. Now their creations have returned home for a new exhibit “Crafting Modernism: Midcentury American Art and Design” at the Memorial Art Gallery. Several of the featured artists studied at Rochester Institute of Technology’s School for American Crafts, the New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University or Syracuse University. Some belonged to Shop One (1953-1977), a pioneering Rochester gallery where craftspeople could sell their work directly to customers. Read more HERE.
According to Alexandra Lange's new book Writing About Architecture we need more architecture critics! Read more HERE.
Next time you have some free time, check out the Getty's online collection of Julius Shulman photos HERE.
MidCenturyHome just posted a nice piece on the Eames-Saarinen designed Case Study House 9 HERE.
Tuesday February 28, 2012
The now-famous lecture by the enfant terrible of modern architecture, Raphael Soriano, at the Fine Arts Gallery, was heard in late November by an audience which is still trying to recover from the shock. Advertised by the gallery as a talk on modern architecture, furniture and art, the speech broke like a storm over every phase of contemporary American life. People who had neglected to put firm foundations under their art opinions found them collapsed or blown away. Read more HERE.
Ilse Hamann Ruocco was born in Spandau, Germany, but spent the majority of her life in San Diego. She studied art at UCLA and Columbia University, and joined the San Diego State faculty in 1934, teaching painting, ceramic arts, and industrial arts. Ruocco was considered an expert in interior design and textile design, and taught at SDSU for a total of 33 years, becoming a Professor Emeritus of Art. She was also the wife of Lloyd Ruocco, the celebrated architect known for designing buildings such as the Design Center on 5th Street, the Geophysics Building at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, and the San Diego Civic Theatre. Ilse Ruocco died in 1982. Hear her interviewed HERE.
Meyer Fine Art in Little Italy secured many works and archival material from Clay Walker’s widow following the artist’s death in 2008. Meyer says he's found documentation that Walker once showed alongside artists like Pablo Picasso and Andy Warhol in venues like the Museum of Modern Art and the Toledo Museum of Art. Read more about West Coast Walker: Catalyst to Modernism HERE.
Eugene “Gene” Weston III was the prototypical modernist, an architect’s architect who cut his teeth in Los Angeles before bringing post ’n’ beam construction to San Diego. Wide expanses of wood and glass allowed for real indoor-outdoor living and open floor plans—both things absent from most homes and commercial buildings just prior to World War II. Read more HERE.
Sunday February 26, 2012
Last week we met with a couple of owners of Henry Hester's American Housing Guild homes north of Mesa College in Linda Vista. With the original owner recently moving out, we will be listing one of these fantastic flat-roof models (pictured above) for sale this week. Please make sure you sign up for our newsletter HERE as open house information will be mailed out this week.
Ceramic artist Kenneth Price died on Friday. See more HERE.
Following our visit, on Friday, to homes by Arthur Decker (in Mt Helix) and Robert Fowble (in Lemon Grove), I realized I had to post more information on both of these architects. I updated Decker's page HERE and launched the first draft of Fowble's bio HERE.
Tuesday February 21, 2012
Las Vegas’ Mid-Century Modern Alliance is hosting a ‘Mid-Century Modern Event’ covering topics such as ‘Preserve Nevada’, ‘The Neon Boneyard’ as well as designer Eva Zeisel on Sunday, February 26th, 2012. Organizer Joyce Corbett has extended an invited to Modern San Diego visitors to join them for this free event (if you’re in Vegas) at the Palace Station Hotel, 2411 West Sahara Ave. Drop Joyce a line HERE.
Saturday February 18, 2012
LUXE Magazine regularly offers insights into local ‘hip and happening’ places, people and things. Just recently, Brett Miller, owner of Tower23, waxed poetic about Homer Delawie’s work and modernsandiego.com. Thanks Brett!
Can you imagine John Baldessari saying,"You can take the boy out of National City, but you can’t take National City out of the boy?" Certainly you can ponder the merits of our local boy having left for Los Angeles to change the world of art while seeing the new MCASD show focused on him. Read more HERE.
Recently retiring at age 92, Paolo Soleri has handed over the reins of Arcosanti to Jeff Stein a former dean of the Boston Architectural College. So what’s next - a retirement home; a canopy for the outdoor amphitheater; a renovated commercial bakery; a storage unit for Mr. Soleri’s collection of fantastical architectural models and/or a half-dozen new apartments? Your guess is as good as mine but read more HERE.
On March 7th, Sotheby’s 20th Century Design auction in New York will host some of the most iconic forms of organic stoneware designed by the Danish ceramicist Axel Salto, to extremely rare assemblage of vessels thrown by Lea Halpern. The furniture, porion of the auction will include works by George Nakashima, Frank Lloyd Wright, and Charlotte Perriand. More HERE.
Thursday February 16, 2012
El Cajon architect Arthur D. Decker (1917-2012) has died. In his memory I just launched a brief outline of his work HERE.
Pacific View Elementary in Encinitas is being repurposed. Anyone know who the architect was? Read more HERE.
Modern Home Tours LLC, is producing a tour of San Diego contemporary and mid-century homes on March 24. Learn more HERE.
Sunday February 12, 2012
Modernist architect Eugene Weston III was in his early 30s when he declared that "the house is the last of the handcrafted objects" in an industrial age. The year was 1956, and he argued in the LA Times that even a modest house could be "more beautiful and meaningful" if it was built with post-and-beam construction that opens up interiors and invites the outdoors in through walls of glass. A third-generation Los Angeles architect, Weston built a string of midcentury homes here before spending three decades with a San Diego firm known for such large-scale commissions as the Old Globe Theatre, San Diego Wild Animal Park and several major buildings at UC San Diego. Weston died on January 31st in Santa Barbara. He was 87. Read the LA Times obituary HERE.
Architect William G. Moises passed away on February 8th. Born in Oklahoma City on October 21, 1928, to Gust and Pearl Moises, William moved to San Diego in 1958. Following service in the US Army in Korea, Moises worked with Frank Hope and Associates, and later partnered with Ron Davis (ca. 1960-65) and Tom Eads. As he neared retirement Moises ran his own firm in La Jolla.
Saturday February 11, 2012
The Society of Architectural Historians' Southern California Chapter has announced Carefree California a 'Cliff May Exhibit and Home Tour' on March 10. Following a special behind-the-scenes tour of the exhibit, "Carefree Living: Cliff May and the Romance of the Ranch" at the UC Santa Barbara Art Museum, the group will visit the May architectural archive. Leaving campus, the group will then visit the Cliff May designed Power Residence (1964) in Camarillo. More information is HERE.
Final accounting is in - Modern San Diego's Eames: The Architect and The Painter event back in December resulted in $1,500 donated to both Mingei International Museum and the Museum of Photographic Arts. Thank you all for being part of it - not only memorable but it helped two great institutions!
Rago is hosting their early 20th Century and 20th Century Pottery auctions on February 25. See more HERE.
Wright's calendar of upcoming auctions is posted HERE.
LA Modern Auctions' next event will be on May 6. Check out more HERE.
Modernica's blog is always a fun read. Check it out HERE.
John Lautner's Elrod House (1968) and Hotel Lautner (1947) will be open for Palm Springs Modernism Week. Read more HERE.
During the recent Stockholm Furniture Fair, Danish brand Gubi showcased its reissuing of Greta Grossman designs. In addition to their recent Grasshopper floor- and Cobra (floor and table) lamps, they have started manufacturing both a dresser and a desk by Grossman as part of the 62-Collection. Read more HERE.
Sunday Feburary 5, 2012
After meeting the owner of Henry Hester's Edwards Residence in Southwest Escondido, we would like to promote the use of this fine modernist mansion as a venue for your next wedding, party, or business retreat.Please drop us a line to learn more about the (above pictured) house HERE.
With the recent discovery of a Harry Lawrence Eggers designed home in Chula Vista, I have started a profile of him HERE.
Frank Lloyd Wright’s Millard House (ca. 1923) in Pasadena is up for sale for $4,995,000. Learn more HERE
Case Study House architect Rodney Walker's own residence (ca. 1959) in Ojai is up for sale for $3,995,000. Learn more HERE.
Philip Johnson's Booth Residence (ca. 1946) in Bedford, New York is up for sale for $1,600,000. Learn more HERE.
One of very few residential designs by Louis Kahn, the Esherick House (ca. 1961) in Philadelphia is up for sale. Learn more HERE.
John Lautner's Schaffer Residence (ca. 1949) (as seen in the Colin Firth film 'A Single Man') is up for sale for $1,395,000. Learn more about the Glendale house HERE.
Hope Springs Resort (ca. 1963) in Desert Hot Springs is for sale. Run your own B&B for $950,000! Learn more HERE.
Craig Ellwood's Broughton Residence (ca. 1949) is for sale. $799,000 gets you a precursor to his Case Study House designs. Learn more HERE.
Thursday Feburary 2, 2012
Eugene ‘Gene’ Weston III has died. Following a recent stroke, Gene died peacefully at Santa Barbara's Cottage Hospital. At 87, the retired architect continued to influence a generation of designers and inspire historians. He was published in Arts & Architecture; was a partner in one of the best post-war firms in San Diego; and served as an ambassador to ‘good design’ for decades. Mr. Weston is survived by Wanda, his wife of 65 years, 4 daughters, 6 grandchildren and 8 great-grandchildren.
Speaking of the firm Liebhardt & Weston, someone recently discovered (and scanned) a Douglas Fir Plywood Association brochure highlighting a line of prefab cabins ‘Second Homes for Leisure Living’ in the 1960s. The brochure is a collection of 16 cabin plans by various architects including Frederick Liebhardt, George Matsumoto, David George and Henrik Bull. Illustrations are by Bob Wandesforde. According to his family, Liebhardt is likely to have designed the ‘three stage beach cabin’ as it mimics his original canvas-roofed backyard architectural studio (ca. 1949-50). Enjoy the images HERE.
Mies Van Der Rohe's Villa Tugendhat in Brno recently enjoyed a $9 million renovation, following its UNESCO designation as a world heritage site, and will open to the public for tours starting in March. Read more about the home's rich history HERE and then buy your plane tickets!
Join me tonight for 'Lost Modern' - a 20-slide, 6.5-minute Pecha Kucha presentation at the Mingei. More info is HERE.
Saturday January 28, 2012
Swing by our OPEN HOUSE for the Sim Bruce Richards home in Alpine TODAY between 11am - 2pm. More information is HERE.
Keith will be presenting 20 slides on '...something or other, I don't know...' at Pecha Kucha Night #14 on February 2 at Mingei. More info is HERE.
Henry Hester's Jonathan Edwards Residence is available for lease and events. I am visiting the property on February 4th so I will have more information to share soon. For now you can glance at some info HERE.
Today is the last day to view ‘In Words and Wood: Sam Maloof, Bob Stocksdale and Ed Moulthrop,’ at the Sam and Alfreda Maloof Foundation. The Huntington’s show ‘The House That Sam Built: Sam Maloof and Art in the Pomona Valley, 1945-1985’ closes on Monday. Read more about these two shows HERE.
Sunday January 22, 2012
Many thanks to the dozens of folks able to attend yesterday's Robert Mosher event. It was a smashing success. Robert Mosher, 91, one of San Diego surviving mid-century modernist architects, was just profiled by writer Roger Showley HERE.
In 1966 A. Quincy Jones designed "Sunnylands," a 650-acre estate and 32,000 square foot home of Walter and Leonore Annenberg in Rancho Mirage. Jones’ signature is evident at Sunnylands, where he used simple overhangs to shield the interiors from the direct sun, as its walls of glass allowed the regional climate's brightness to fill the rooms. The house's architectural structure is exposed rather than hidden – as trellises, steel beams, and coffered ceilings are all evident. Sunnylands’ interiors were designed by William ‘Billy’ Haines and Ted Graber, known for their Hollywood Regency style. Sunnylands will open to the public beginning March 1, 2012! Tickets for tours go on sale February 15 - and reservations are available online only. Learn more HERE.
An A. Quincy Jones design in Fort Worth, TX is doomed. The Andrew Fuller Residence (ca. 1950) is profiled HERE.
I am building a page on artists Jane and Walter Chapman HERE. Please let me know if you have any information on this dynamic duo!
Friday January 20, 2012
The San Diego Architectural Foundation’s PechaKucha Night #14 will be held at the Mingei International Museum adjacent to the exhibit "San Diego's Craft Revolution; From Post-War Modern to California Design". Beer and wine will flow as will food via MIHO Gastrotruck. Learn more HERE.
The Times spent time with artist Ellsworth Kelly recently. At 88, he is still on fire. Check it out HERE.
Monday January 16, 2012
BorregoModern.Com’s Bill Lawrence is presenting ‘Borrego Modern: The Architecture of de Anza Country Club’ this Saturday (January 21). Join Bill for period photographs as well as the contemporary work of photographer Judy Parker. The night starts at 530pm with ‘no host cocktails’ followed by a buffet dinner at 6. Bill goes on stage at 7. RSVP to 760-767-5105 x 111 by Thursday (January 19).
More information is leaking out about the US debut of the travelling exhibition Greta Magnusson Grossman: A Car and Some Shorts. Launching on January 20, the show will be in Tulsa through the winter/spring. Read more HERE.
Cindy McArdle has launched a website to market her focus on 'Modern San Diego' in North County HERE.
Saturday January 14, 2012
Anne Tyng, a pioneering female architect whose ideas about geometry influenced Louis Kahn's modernist buildings and who later had a child with him, has died. She was 91. Tyng was among the first group of women to graduate from Harvard University's architecture school in 1944. She struggled her entire career to be taken seriously….During a 15-year relationship that was professional and romantic, she helped him produce his path-breaking early buildings…read more HERE.
Responding to the demolition of such local icons as John Lautner's Shusett House, and a recent aborted plan to raze Richard Neutra's Kronish House the city of Beverly Hills has adopted a historic preservation ordinance that seeks to protect noteworthy structures. First for the first time in its history, the City has created rules for tearing down or altering structures older than 45 years and designed by important architects. It also recently established a Cultural Heritage Commission. Read more HERE.
NEXT SATURDAY, I will host a talk with Robert Mosher entitled “Modernism Defined by Someone Who Committed It”. Please join us at the NewSchool of Architecture & Design beginning at 9:30 a.m. More information is available HERE.
Tuesday January 10, 2012
Gigi’s Island Restaurant, formerly a Chart House renamed as Bananaz, in Rancho Mirage burned down today. The Ken Kellogg designed structure (ca. 1977) burned as 50+ firefighters battled the blaze. Damage is estimated at $2.5 million. Read more HERE.
Ricardo Legorreta, the architect who introduced Mexican modernism to a global audience and who brought his crisp, brightly colored aesthetic to downtown Los Angeles with a controversial 1993 redesign of Pershing Square, has died. He was 80. Read more HERE.
Friday January 6, 2012
Andrew Geller, an architect known for his series of inexpensive beach houses in whimsical shapes, many of them in the Hamptons, died last week in New York. He was 87. During his 35-year tenure at Raymond Loewy & Associates, Geller designed the “typical American house’’ shown at the American National Exhibition in Moscow in 1959 – the same house where the ‘Kitchen Debate’ between Vice President Richard M. Nixon and Nikita S. Khrushchev took place.
On January 21, I will host a talk with Robert Mosher entitled “Modernism Defined by Someone Who Committed It”. Please join us at the NewSchool of Architecture & Design beginning at 9:30 a.m. More information is available HERE.
Sunday January 1, 2012
Today, we welcomed 2012 by sharing new year's wishes to owners of architect-designed homes. We left our Ellwood home, to visit friends at their annual New Years Open House (at their La Mesa Ruocco designed home). On the way we stopped by to meet the owners of a John Mock home for the first time. Following meeting our new friends, and joining old friends for a bit to eat, we capped off New Year's Day in a Dick Lareau designed home! It's is going to be a great year indeed.
I have been thinking a great deal about Gordon Drake lately. Creating a small, but magnificent, body of work in a short 7-year career, his early death cut short something very special. Among the unique aspects of his work were the utilization of brick floors and unpainted wood, often plywood. Flying in the face of dogmantic modernists of the late '40s and early '50s in Los Angeles, such ideas (proffered by his mentor Harwell Hamilton Harris) remind me of Ted Paulson's work here in San Diego. Until today, I had not thought why I have been so taken aback by Paulson's homea. It is both the uniqueness of Paulson's ideas, and how he stood apart from his fellow San Diego architects of the era, that make me think of Drake's spirit somehow being connected to his homes.
Ceramist Eva Zeisel, known for her eccentric dinnerware in the 1940s and ’50s that helped to revolutionize the way Americans set their tables, died on Friday in New City. She was 105. Read more HERE.
I presume enough visitors to ModernSanDiego venture off to Santa Barbara on occasion. Next time you are planning a trip up north, click on THIS ARTICLE to read about original Ackerman (and other) mosaics on view, in situ, around town.
I have been consumed these days by thinking about Greta Magnusson Grossman's life and work, and her last years spent here in San Diego. Following Grossman's death, her home and estate was sold by Teresa Laggner, 'conservator of the estate of Greta M. Grossman.' For days I have wondered how Laggner was connected to Grossman -- until I found THIS ARTICLE. At first I presumed Ms. Laggner was a relative of the late Grossman. But now I simply hope that she did not rip off the estate!
We ended the year with nearly 19,000 unique visitors! Thanks to one and all.