444

Great Houses of Los Angeles

 

Upon visiting Los Angeles in 1963, Marcel Duchamp described Los Angeles as a place that did not exist. Describing his frustrations that the city lacked wayfinding devices to help orient himself, Duchamp’s quote reveals a moment in urban history when LA was regarded as a city that nobody thought they could see. What Duchamp failed to notice was the city’s rich history of domestic architecture produced figures from Frank Lloyd Wright to the architects who participated in the Case Study House Program. The course will situate a range projects within the broader historical shifts taking place in Los Angeles and alongside key disciplinary developments taking place in the history of domestic architecture.


Contrary to Duchamp’s perception of Los Angeles, this course introduces students to the significance of Los Angeles architecture by way of a close examination of homes designed by prominent architects—each who practiced in Southern California in the early to mid-twentieth century. In lieu of site visits to individual houses, we will instead view a series of documentary films to supplement the selected readings presented and discussed in seminar.


Students will be expected to write short evaluations about three out of the total houses/architects they study. The short essays will include the student’s understanding of the project in conjunction with or contrast to the architects stated intentions. A 10-page research paper can be substituted for one of the evaluation papers. For this paper, the student must select a research topic approved by the instructor related to materials covered in the course.

 
 
Related Courses
  • 404
    Topics in Modern Architecture in Southern California
    Topics in Modern Architecture in Southern California
    Architecture 404 examines the impact of the environment, culture and politics on the evolution of architecture and urban planning in Southern California in the 20th century. It explores the interchange between European modernism and local vernacular influences as they came together to create new regional architectural and urban forms. Lectures examine a series of case studies in order to more closely explore the complexity of these developments. There are few regions in the world more exciting to explore the scope of twentieth-century architecture than in Southern California. It is here that European and Asian influences combined with the local environment, culture, politics, and vernacular traditions to create an entirely new vocabulary of regional architecture and urban form. Lecture topics range from the stylistic influences of the Arts and Crafts movement and European Modernism to the impact on architecture and planning of the automobile, World War II, and the USC School of Architecture during the 1950s.
     
  • 444
    Great Houses of Los Angeles
    Great Houses of Los Angeles

    Upon visiting Los Angeles in 1963, Marcel Duchamp described Los Angeles as a place that did not exist. Describing his frustrations that the city lacked wayfinding devices to help orient himself, Duchamp’s quote reveals a moment in urban history when LA was regarded as a city that nobody thought they could see. What Duchamp failed to notice was the city’s rich history of domestic architecture produced figures from Frank Lloyd Wright to the architects who participated in the Case Study House Program. The course will situate a range projects within the broader historical shifts taking place in Los Angeles and alongside key disciplinary developments taking place in the history of domestic architecture.


    Contrary to Duchamp’s perception of Los Angeles, this course introduces students to the significance of Los Angeles architecture by way of a close examination of homes designed by prominent architects—each who practiced in Southern California in the early to mid-twentieth century. In lieu of site visits to individual houses, we will instead view a series of documentary films to supplement the selected readings presented and discussed in seminar.


    Students will be expected to write short evaluations about three out of the total houses/architects they study. The short essays will include the student’s understanding of the project in conjunction with or contrast to the architects stated intentions. A 10-page research paper can be substituted for one of the evaluation papers. For this paper, the student must select a research topic approved by the instructor related to materials covered in the course.

     
  • 499
    Architectural Drawing & Sketching
    Architectural Drawing & Sketching

    To Sketch is to Think. When an Architect is designing, they draw what they are thinking and the drawings/sketches are part of the creative process. However, when the Artist draws from life, they describe what they see and interpret it in a personal way. The observer perceives the subject through the artist’s eyes and personal interpretation. While the Artist’s work is an end in itself, the Architect’s early sketch is the beginning of an intriguing visual enquiry and perhaps the initiation of a great building. Why is drawing and sketching so vital to the design process for the Architect? At the conceptual level, sketching or graphic “doodling” visually pre-meditates the first inkling of a design strategy, quickly imagined and soon abandoned if not realizing a fruitful idea. What you sketch and draw is what you see “in your mind,” inspired by what you can visualize around you in a physical context or what you foresee as you “Dream,” the stimulation of visual ideas, the “Starting Block of Design.” The creative process in Architecture is complex and hard to define but when “ideas” are stimulated, they are communicated through sketches. To quote Le Corbusier, “I prefer drawing to talking; drawing is faster and less prone to lying.”