Frank Lloyd Wright’s Iconic Phoenix House on Thin Ice Once Again

West
Wednesday, November 14, 2012
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Thompson Photography

After an anonymous buyer stepped in to save a threatened Frank Lloyd Wright house in Phoenix, it appears that the future the David & Gladys Wright House is not so sunny after all. AN previously noted that an anonymous buyer was throwing the iconic home a $2.4 million cash life line to save it from demolition, the real estate broker announced this week that the home would be placed back on the market after the purchase agreement fell through.

The buyer cited “personal and business” reasons for rescinding the offer, according to The Phoenix Business Journal. After much urging and a petition by the Frank Lloyd Wright Building Conservancy, the Phoenix City Council will vote on December 4 on whether or not to designate the home as a historic landmark, thus preventing its demolition. The house, built in 1952, is considered by some to be an architectural foreshadowing to the continuous circular movements seen in the spirals of Wright’s Guggenheim Museum.

Poon Design Uses Parametric Algorithms to Create Geometric Trellis in Pasadena

West
Tuesday, November 13, 2012
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(Courtesy Poon Design)

(Courtesy Poon Design)

Beverly Hills-based Poon Design has transformed a Pasadena home’s porch trellis into a modern mathematical marvel. Using a parametric algorithm, architects Anthony Poon and John Kim used translucent acrylic to create a perforated structure composed of water-jet-cut holes. Circles of varying sizes dot the trellis allowing light to softly filter in while still providing ample shade.

“The glowing pattern allows sunlight to stream in alongside constantly changing shadows,” said Poon. The wood frame of the 9-foot structure is supported by galvanized metal poles and covers a 550 square-foot deck made from wood and recycled plastic composite lumber planks. Hexagonal cut-outs pepper the deck reaching out towards the future pool, garden, and guest house. A tree will be planted in the largest opening and align with an aperture above for a truly contemporary look.

Another image after the jump.

Tuesday! Discuss Downtown LA’s Resurgence at the A+D Museum

West
Monday, November 12, 2012
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Student rendering of a re-thought MOCA, from Grand Illusion. (USC)

Student rendering of a re-thought MOCA, from Grand Illusion. (USC)

As we’ve reported quite a bit, downtown LA is seeing a formidable resurgence. An equally formidable panel will meet at LA’s A+D Museum on Tuesday to debate the phenomenon, looking at the architectural development of Grand Avenue, adaptive reuse in the historic corridor, hip emergence and clean tech in the arts district, and so on.

Panelists include architect Michael Maltzan; AN West Coast Editor Sam Lubell; KCRW’s Frances Anderton; Ayahlushim Getachew, Senior Vice President at Thomas Properties Group; Bob Hale, Principal at Rios Clementi Hale Studios;  and Carol Schatz, President and CEO of Downtown Center Business Improvement District and the Central City Association. The event will also include a signing of Anderton’s illuminating new book on Grand Avenue, Grand Illusion. 

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Saved? Gehry’s LA Aerospace Hall Gets Listing on California Register

Newsletter, West
Friday, November 9, 2012
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Frank Gehry's Air and Space Gallery. (Guggenheim Museum Publications)

Frank Gehry’s Air and Space Gallery. (Guggenheim Museum Publications)

AN found out today that Frank Gehry’s Aerospace Hall at the California Science Center (now known as the Air and Space Gallery) in Los Angeles has now been listed on the California Register by the California Office of Historic Preservation. As we’ve reported, the museum’s fate has been in doubt as the Science Center makes plans for a new building to house the Space Shuttle Endeavor, and refuses to comment on what it plans to do with Gehry’s building, which was shuttered last year.

The listing doesn’t guarantee the building’s protection, but it could slow down any threats. It may trigger an environmental review if another building were to replace it. At the very least, the museum would need to review the impact of a demolition or major change. The angular, metal-clad building, built in 1984, was Gehry’s first major public building.

Anonymous Buyer Saves Frank Lloyd Wright House From Wrecking Ball

West
Friday, November 9, 2012
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Great news! Frank Lloyd Wright’s David & Gladys Wright house in Phoenix won’t be reduced to rubble as developers had hoped. The house, designed for FLW’s son David in 1952, had been threatened with demolition earlier this year, but an anonymous buyer ponied up nearly $2.4 million to save the house. The previous owner, developer 8081 Meridian, had proposed tearing down the house and building two new houses on the property. The spiral-planned, textile block home is one of Wright’s most unusual designs, with an amazing spiral ramp that leads into and lifts the house above the desert. Check out the video walk-through of the home above or a photo slideshow over here. Way to go, anonymous!

Relocation Time on the West Coast

Eavesdroplet, West
Thursday, November 8, 2012
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Rendering of Barton Myers' DPAC Orlando Performing Arts Center. (Courtesy Barton Myers)

Rendering of Barton Myers’ DPAC Orlando Performing Arts Center. (Courtesy Barton Myers)

Everybody seems to be opening up new offices these days. One of our favorite firms, Barton Myers Associates, is moving from Westwood all the way to Santa Barbara, which doesn’t sound promising. Cunningham Group has opened new digs in Culver City’s Hayden Tract, the collection of arts offices made famous by the wild constructs of Eric Owen Moss. And UCLA Architecture will remain in Westwood. But it’s ready to open a new robotics lab inside the old Playa Vista research facilities of Howard Hughes.

Buckyball Lights Up Again in Madison Square Park

East, West
Thursday, November 8, 2012
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BUCKYBALL illuminated in blue (Photo Credit: James Ewing)

BUCKYBALL illuminated in blue (Photo Credit: James Ewing)

New York-based artist Leo Villareal is creatively illuminating the constructed form. In Madison Square Park, Villareal’s LED light-up geodesic dome, Buckyball, stands tall, undamaged but unlit after Hurricane Sandy. The Madison Square Park Conservancy told AN that the lights are expected to be back on tonight. And soon, Villareal also plans to light-up a far larger construction on the West coast: the San Francisco Bay Bridge.

Continue reading after the jump.

On View> Greta Magnusson Grossman: A Car and Some Shorts

Newsletter, West
Wednesday, November 7, 2012
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Rare three panel folding screen in walnut and metal, 1952. (Courtesy PMCA)

Rare three panel folding screen in walnut and metal, 1952. (Courtesy PMCA)

Greta Magnusson Grossman: A Car and Some Shorts
Pasadena Museum of California Art
490 East Union St., Pasadena, Calif.
October 28–February 24

Before Ikea introduced cheaply made Swedish-designed furnishings to dorm rooms across the globe, there was Swedish architect and designer Greta Magnusson Grossman, an often overlooked founding figure of Swedish modernism. For the first retrospective of her work, the Pasadena Museum of California Art presents Greta Magnusson Grossman: A Car and Some Shorts, which showcases designs that chronicle Grossman’s remarkable career. Her work fuses Scandinavian minimalism with California modernism, as illustrated by her well-known and widely replicated Grasshopper and Cobra lamp designs.

Continue reading after the jump.

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Another Hollywood Landmark In Trouble?

West
Wednesday, November 7, 2012
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The recently-renovated Hollywood Palladium. (Coe Architecture)

The recently-renovated Hollywood Palladium. (Coe Architecture)

Last week AN learned that Hollywood’s Capitol Records building may be in for a dwarfing by two new adjacent towers. Now we learn from our friends at Curbed that the historic Hollywood Palladium, renovated in 2008 by Coe Architects, might also be in trouble. Miami developer Crescent Heights is about pay $55 million for the Palladium site, and it’s rumored that they want to build luxury apartments or condos there. The 72-year-old theater apparently has no historic protections, so this could get ugly. Stay tuned.

This Weekend> Tech Refresher With AIACC

West
Friday, November 2, 2012
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Exhibit A: This is a CNC Router. (AXYZ International)

Exhibit A: This is a CNC Router. (AXYZ International)

Feel like technology has left you behind? Check out the AIACC Now Next Future Conference this weekend. Not only does it feature a technology boot came, with hands-on technology training, but it features technology leaders like Kevin Daly from Daly Genik, Dennis Shelden, from Gehry Technologies, and Alisdair McGregor from Arup. Meanwhile topics will include BIM, new manufacturing technologies, Eco districts, and cloud technologies. Yes, you’ll be much cooler after this is over.

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Our Man At The AIA/LA Awards

West
Friday, November 2, 2012
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Caffe Bene, Yazdani Studio, one of the Next LA Award winners.

[Editor's note: Our fearless correspondent Guy Horton shares his thoughts—Gonzo Style—on the AIA/LA Awards Ceremony that took place on the Broad Stage in the Santa Monica Performing Arts Center. And he was surprisingly assured by it all.  Read ahead, if you dare. And enjoy the slideshow of the Design Award winners at the end.]

To those who missed it,

Man you should have been there. It was crazy. Honestly, the most insane Awards I’ve been to in years. Moby was there. You know he’s been doing this LA architecture blog. He called LA urbanism a “shit show.” Can you believe that? Brilliant. That got repeated a lot and I imagine it will become the buzz-word for the 2012 Awards: The Shit Show. In a good way, of course. He looked a little nervous. Saw him before he went on stage to introduce things. Told me the whole architecture economic situation really sucks. I know, I told him. But that’s OK. We get by.

Read More

Garten’s Rippling New Bridge In Los Angeles

West
Friday, November 2, 2012
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(Berg&Associates)

(Berg & Associates)

As we’ve noted before, sculptor Cliff Garten is one of the lucky artists who gets to remake the urban landscape. His latest work is the Baldwin Hills Gateway, a 150-foot-long bridge that marks the entry into the Baldwin Hills Parklands, part of the sprawling Kenneth Han State Recreation Area. The eight-foot-high rail, made of water jet cut and rolled anodized aluminum, is perforated by a rippling pattern inspired by the artist’s survey of the entire park, creating interesting patterns of light and shadow on the bridge’s surface. The project, funded by a grant from the Baldwin Hills Conservancy to the Los Angeles Neighborhood Initiative, just opened last week.

More photos after the jump.

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