Filtering by Category: los angeles

LA.7: The Norton Simon

Added on by suzy baur.

This museum has just made it to my top ten list of favorite things. I love everything about it: the stunning building along with its beautiful sculpture garden and exquisite art collection. The museum was designed by Ladd & Kelsey and opened in 1969. In 1998-99 the museum was renovated by Frank Gehry along with Greg Walsh and landscape architect Nancy Goslee. 

It is so enjoyable walking around this wonderful building featuring Heath ceramic tile cladding and rounded corners. I caught myself thinking of Richard Serra's Band (2006) by doing so. It meanders through the property spreading its four arms and revealing a delightful sculpture garden and café in the rear. The sculptures by Barbara Hepworth, Henry Moore, Jacques Lipshitz, Aristide Maillol, Auguste Rodin and many others seem thoughtfully chosen and displayed around the pond and amongst the colorful shrubs. The Café invites you take and seat and revel in the peacefulness of the garden. 

When entering the museum and walking through the galleries, I noticed once again how thoughtfully the sculptures were displayed. The collection of Degas sculptures is remarkable. However it was the collection of paintings that has left me stunned. Featuring works by outstanding artists from the 14th through the 20th century, the collection has many a highlight to enjoy. The three paintings by Zurbarán, especially The Birth of the Virgin (ca.1627), are magnificent. And so are the two small works by Edgar Degas, Olive trees agains and mountain background and Wheat Field and Green Hill (both ca. 1892). I am also in love with Still life with Flower (1887) by Emile Bernard. And there is Vassily Kandisky's Unequal (1932). I could go on and on and on…. best to go and see it yourself. 

Located on 411 West Colorado Blvd, Pasadena CA 91105
To learn more, visit Norton Simon
heck out Heath Ceramics
heck out Ladd & Kelsey
heck out Nancy Goslee Power Associates


While in Pasadena, make sure to check these out… 

Top left: The Gamble House by Charles & Henry Greene 1908; 4 Westmoreland Place, Pasadena; Reservations highly recommended. 
Top center: The Cole House by Charles & Henry Greene 1906; 2 Westmoreland Place, Pasadena
Top right: Mansion Fenyes by Robert Farquhar 1906; 170 N. Orange Grove Blvd, Pasadena; to visit, check out Pasadena Museum of History
Bottom left: The Bentz House by Charles & Henry Greene: 657 Prospect Blvd, Pasadena
Bottom center: The Millard House by Frank Lloyd Wright 1923; 645 Prospect Blvd, Pasadena
Bottom right: The Millard House by Frank Lloyd Wright 1923; 645 Prospect Blvd, Pasadena

Talking museums….. here is a list of my favorite ones in LA: 

The J. Getty Center for the Arts
- located on 1200 Getty Center Drive, Los Angeles CA 90049
- architect: Richard Meier (1992-97)
- highlights: pavilion, garden, patio system; extensive painting, manuscript photo collection
- visit The Getty

- located on 5905 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles CA 90036
- architects: Pereira & Associates (1964), Hardy, Holzman and Pfeiffer (1982-83)
- highlights: largest museum of the western states; huge collection
- do not miss James Turell's Ganzfeld in the Resnick Pavilion (make reservations @ iPad kiosk)
- visit LACMA.

A + D Museum  
- located on 6032 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles CA 90036
- will relocate to the Arts District and is expected to open in spring/summer 2015

- highlights: continuous exhibits on architecture and design 
- visit A + D

- located on 250 South Grand Ave, Los Angeles CA 90012
- architect: Arata Isozaki (1983-87)
- highlights: European and Amercian contemporary art
- visit MOCA

The Broad
- located on 221 South Grand Ave, Los Angeles CA 90012
- architects: Diller, Scofidio + Renfro
- highlights: contemporary art collection of philanthropists Eli & Edythe Broad
- to open September 20th, 2015
- visit The Broad
- to learn more, check out Mega Patron

LA.6: Eames House

Added on by suzy baur.

Built as part of John Entenza's Case Study House Program, the Eames Studio House (#8)  is one of America's great 20th century houses. Charles and Ray Eames purchased the lot in 1945 shortly after they had moved to California. Initially designed jointly by Charles Eames and Eerio Saarinen, the original plans of a cantilever were changed during the construction phase (1947-49) to accomodate the current lay-out. The final design consists of two metal-framed double-height boxes - one pavilion used as residence, one as studio. Set against a eucalyptus-covered hillside, the Eames House overlooks a beautiful meadow with a magnificent view of the pacific ocean. 

We got lucky enough to enjoy an outstanding private interior tour, which was didactically very well thought out. For almost three hours we immersed ourselves into the world of Charles and Ray Eames. The open, maximized space of the interior was very impressive and their collection of memorabilia astounding. Apparently the house has not been altered over the years; kitchen and furniture - all is still original.  We left with a fulfilled and inspired heart taking with us one of Charles Eames fitting quotes: "We take our pleasures seriously" . 

Located on 203 Chautauqua Blvd, Pacific Palisades CA 90272
To learn more, visit The Eames House
To learn more about the Case Study House Program, visit  Art & ArchitectureWikipedia and CurbedLA

Aa a side note: driving along Chautauqua Blvd, you will notice a Brutalist cliff hanger. In case you are curious, it was built in 1979 by Robert Bridges….

LA.5: Schindler & Neutra

Added on by suzy baur.

Schindler House

R.M. Schindler (1887-1853) studied at the Academy of Fine Arts under Adolf Loos and arrived in the United States in 1914. Initially he was working for Ottenheimer, Stern & Reichart in Chicago. A big admirer of Frank Llyod Wright, he was able to secure work with him in 1918. Schindler left Wright's Studio after completing the Barnsdall project in 1921. 

The Schindler/Chase Studio House (1921-22) is one of his most important works. Featuring a modernist canon, the studio house has regarded as the clearest example of Schindler's principles. Built as a double house for the Schindlers and the Chases, the house speaks of honest materials, efficiency and economy. I love the simplicity of the kitchen with its flat red wood panels and ergonomic lay-out. Japanese and Spanish influences are detectable in the way the plan opens all rooms to the atrium as well as the surrounding garden and elegantly marries inside with outside. The Schindler House is beautiful - a classic in modern architecture!

Located on 833 N. Kings Road, West Hollywood CA 90069. 
To learn more, visit The Schindler House


While in West Hollywood...

Two houses to explore down the street. 

Top left: Apartment Building, Islamic Revival 1925, Carl Kay, on Sweetzer at Waring Aves.
Top center: 
Apartment Building, Islamic Revival 1925, Carl Kay, detail. 
Top right: Duplex, 1936, William P. Kesling, on 754-756 Harper Ave.

VDL Research Compound

Richard Neutra (1892 - 1970) is considered to be one of the most important modernist architects.  Neutra studied under Adolf Loos at the Vienna University of Technology. He came to the United States in 1921 and briefly worked for Frank Lloyd Wright. After accepting an invitation from his close university friend R. M. Schindler, he  moved to Southern California, where he lived and built for the majority of his career. 

The VDL Research Compound is named after Dir CH Van Der Leeuw, a dutch philanthropist, whose no-interest loan helped Richard Neutra build a radical, two story international style house with rooftop and balcony gardens. It was designed to accommodate Neutra's studio office and two residences. Built in 1933, it partially burned in 1963. The VDL Research Compound, the epitome of Neutra's aesthetic and beliefs, offers daily tours by Cal Poly Pomona Architecture students. 

Located on on 2300 E. Silver Blvd, Silver Lake CA 90036
For tours, visit VDL
To learn more, visit Neutra History


While in Silver Lake…..

Silver Lake, despite being a small district, has a high concentration of first-rate architecture. It is one of the most important places in LA to visit. Modernists: Schindler, Neutra, Ain, Soriano, Harris, Lautner abound!

To learn more, visit Silver Lake Architecture.  

Top left: Colony of Neutra Houses at Neutra Place.
Top center: 
Bubeshko Apartments by R. M. Schindler (1938 right; 1941 left) located on 2036-40 Griffith Park Blvd.
Top right: 
Bubeshko Apartments by R. M. Schindler, detail. 

LA.4: Hollyhock House

Added on by suzy baur.

Barnsdall Art Park has many highlights to offer. First and foremost it is home to the Aline Barnsdall Hollyhock House by Frank Lloyd Wright (1867-1959). Originally built between 1919 and 1921 as a private home for oil heiress Aline Bransdall, the 5,000 square foot abode - including the eleven surrounding acres - was donated to LA in 1927 as a public art park in memory of her father Theodore Bransdall. It has just been nominated as a UNESCO world heritage site. 
Closed due to extensive restoration since 2003, it will reopen on February 13th 2015 and this much to my delight. I'll have to got back soon to view the interiors; I hear the fire place is spectacular. If you happen to visit, make sure to walk around this magnificent building to get a view of the Wading Pool and Pergola designed collaboratively by R.M. Schindler and R. Neutra (1925). The Garden Wall and Landscaping were designed by R.M. Schindler, as was the Studio Residence A located at the entrance of park. If you happen to get there in the late afternoon, remember to take a breather: sit on the lawn and enjoy the beautiful view. 

Barnsdall Art Park is located on Hollywood Blvd at Vermont Avenue, East Holywood. 
To learn more, visit Barnsdall Art Park
To learn more about the restoration, visit Boulin Art


More Frank Lloyd Wright….

Top left: Storer House, 1923 on 8161 Hollywood Blvd, West Hollywood.
Top center: Wright House, 1928. On 858 N. Doheny Drive, West Hollywood. 
Top right: 
Millard House, 1923. On 645 Prospect Crescent, Pasadena. Its famous view is from a gate on Rosemont. 

LA.3: LA Phil

Added on by suzy baur.

The Disney concert hall, located Downtown LA, Civic Center is a curious building. Designed by Frank Gehry, it built between 1988 and 2003 with numerous changes being made to the initial design. The exterior seems almost adventurous with its many concave as well as convex surfaces, sharp edges and brilliant reflections. The matt stainless steel panels are be rather bright on a sunny sky and when stepping closer you can feel the heat radiating off. The interior seems equally swooping with is curved galleries and red carpet. However the spruce representing the material wood instruments are made of, is an equalizing contrast to the shiny exterior. The Blue Rillon Garden on Level 3 is a very pleasant surprise in the midst of Downtown LA. 


More to see Downtown LA ….. 

Top left: The Broad, Diller Scofidio + Renfro; opening fall 2015. 
Top center: 
Hall of Records, Richard Neutra and Robert Alexander, 1961-62. 
Top right: LA Department of Water and Power with reflecting pool, Albert C. Martin 1963-64. 


Top left: LA Performing Art Center; Mark Taper Forum with reflecting pool, Welton Becket Ass. 1964-69. 
Top center: 
Eastern Columbia, Claude Beelman 1930. 
Top right: 
High School for the Visual & Performing Arts, Coop Himme(l)blau w/ HMC Architects, 2002-08. 

LA.2: Our Lady of Angels

Added on by suzy baur.

The Cathedral of our Lady of Angels is located Downtown LA on the northeast corner of Temple Street and Grand Ave. It was designed by Raphael Moneo and built in 2002. 
Quoted as one of the most beautiful spaces in LA, this cathedral with its tinted cement walls and alabaster windows takes your breath away. The light that floods through the magnificent thin panels is mystifying and spiritual. Moving in the space, let's you experience it in a fascinating way. 

LA.1: Theater @Ace

Added on by suzy baur.

The United Artist Theater (1927) was designed by Charles Howard Crane; building architects were Walker and Eisen. After an extensive remodel by Commune Design, it was reopen in 2014. The interior is a feast in Spanish Gothic style and a marvel in materials as well as colors. Mary Pickford, one of the founders of the United Artists, apparently contributed a fair amount to the design. 

To learn more, visit Historic Los Angeles


A great place to stay….

The Ace Hotel next door.