Archive: Architecture

Entries in this category going back awhile
 

Deborah Sussman, Los Angeles area designer was 83

olympics-sussman.jpg Sussman began her career as an office designer for Charles and Ray Eames. She created a distinctive graphic look for the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles.

Sunkist leaving the Valley for, well, Valencia

Sunkist_LynneTucker.jpg The Sunkist building on Riverside Drive in Sherman Oaks has been a visual landmark beside the Ventura Freeway for 45 years. "A symphony in concrete," the LA Conservancy says.

Modernist William Krisel's iconic Brentwood home razed

krisel-home-shulman.jpg The iconic LA architect built his own midcentury masterpiece on North Tigertail Road. Krisel and the architectural preservation community were horrified to discover late last week that the home was being torn down.
robinsons-bh-hess.jpg The long-closed Robinsons store beside the Beverly Hilton near the intersection of Wilshire and Santa Monica boulevards is being razed (but apparently not today) to make way for a big new development called 9900 Wilshire. This mid-century modern Robinsons had a lot of fans.

Did Patriotic Hall have a different architect?

Clubhouse Rendering (c1915) copy.jpg Los Angeles historian Jim Beardsley, a scholar in the work of architect Ross G. Montgomery, says his man produced a rendering for the hall ten years before the building opened.

Disney Hall turns 10 years old this fall

disney-hall-with-poster-lao.jpg Let the reviews begin. Mark Swed says the acoustics are great and "tourists take pleasure in merely touching the building's shiny surfaces. Yet Disney Hall is not what it could be."

Case Study Houses finally added to National Register

casestudy22b.jpg The National Park Service listed ten of the acclaimed Case Study Houses around Southern California on the National Register of Historic Places, citing their historic and architectural significance. The Stahl house in the Hollywood Hills is one of the ten.

Restored Wilshire Boulevard Temple looking good

Wilshire_Boulevard_Temple_jj.jpg Rather than abandon Koreatown for the Westside, the temple leadership decided to stay and fix up the fading synagogue, under the guidance of architect Brenda Levin. Jewish Journal editor Rob Eshman is glad they did.

Frank Gehry still lives in a Wilshire-centric Los Angeles

disney-hall-front-red-car-l.jpg Forget Downtown. Gehry still agrees with his pitch of ten years ago: MOCA and the cathedral should be on Wilshire Boulevard and his signature Walt Disney Hall should have been built in Westwood (or further west.)

Preserving LA's sprawl: a panel discussion

sfv-sprawl.jpg On Saturday morning I'm taking part in an LA Conservancy panel on suburbanization and sprawl in Woodland Hills. It's part of the Curating the City: Modern Architecture in L.A. series, which itself is included in Pacific Standard Time Presents: Modern Architecture in L.A. Info inside.

Scottish Rite Temple on Wilshire to become private art museum

scottish-rite-curbed.jpg Maurice and Paul Marciano of the Guess Inc. jeans empire paid $8 million for the Millard Sheets-designed venue. They plan to renovate and use it to collect their art, with occasional public showings.

In honor of the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium (video)

Santa-Monica-Civic-Auditorium-oscars.jpg Oscars ceremonies, Roller Games, cat shows and school concerts are part of the auditorium's legacy, but it's the T.A.M.I Show in 1964 that might be the most enduring memory — at least on film. And no performance measures up to James Brown's.

LA Conservancy reboots on the web - it's good

map-conservancy-grab.jpg The new site is driven by — this will shock you — big pictures of important buildings and architecture. Plus self-guided tours to places like the San Fernando Valley.

How the Getty found architect Claud Beelman's papers

oxy-building-from-west-lao.jpg Claud Beelman was one of those Los Angeles architects whose work spanned eras and dramatic changes in style. He's responsible for noteworthy LA examples as different as the Eastern Columbia building downtown and the office tower occupied by Occidental Petroleum and the Hammer Museum in Westwood.

Urban ambition and the future of LA at the Getty

water_and_power-shulman-getty.jpg On Thursday morning I moderated a panel on the future of Los Angeles at the Getty Research Institute's symposium, Urban Ambition: Assessing the Evolution of L.A. The participants included Christopher Hawthorne, the LA Times architecture critic.

Tamale on Whittier Boulevard put up for sale

the-tamale-lapl.jpg The piece of progammatic architecture in East LA known as the Tamale was listed for sale this week: $459,000 with adjacent house.

5 broken things about LA for the next mayor to fix

pershing-square-garage-sign.jpg Times architecture critic Christopher Hawthorne observes that the candidates for mayor have been short on future vision for the city. That's too bad, he writes in a front-page critic's notebook, since there are "some major holes in the civic fabric." It all starts with the mess that is LAX.

Korean Air hotel in DTLA to be tallest building in the West

tallest-building-acmartin.jpg Developer Korean Airlines today unveiled the AC Martin design for the new Wilshire Grand tower at Wilshire Boulevard and Figueroa Street and said it will be 73 stories — one floor more than the US Bank tower downtown.

Lost train depots of Los Angeles

la-grande-station.jpg I intended to post on this a couple of weeks ago, but it slipped with the whole cold/flu/whatever thing. Nathan Masters has done a really nice piece at KCET's website on the train stations that dotted Los Angeles before rail service was consolidated at the "union" station in 1939.

Film culture’s obsession with the LA architecture of John Lautner

sheats-goldstein-house-dani.jpg In the new issue of VQR, the Virginia Quarterly Review, Los Angeles journalist Adam Baer (with photographer Elizabeth Daniels) explores his own and Hollywood's draw to LA architecture, especially the modern works of Lautner.

Street view of new Century Plaza Hotel

century-plaza-entry-plaza.jpg The City Council on Tuesday gave final approval for that $2 billion development around the Century Plaza Hotel in Century City. Here are details and what the front of the hotel would look like.

Fred Harvey cafe at Union Station still looking for operator

fred-harvey-franklin-ave.jpg One of the most potentially cool spots to locate a restaurant in Los Angeles could be moving closer to opening. But we have heard this before. Check out Fiona Apple in the space.

Big things that were never built in Los Angeles

civic-center-wright.jpg Imagine if Disneyland had been built in Burbank, or if LAX lay west of the corner of Balboa and Roscoe. A major new exhibit will look at the city that never happened — a cool video inside invites you to support the project on Kickstarter.

Oscar Niemeyer, Brazilian architect was 104

strick-house-schall.jpg The modernist designed one home in the United States, the Strick House in Santa Monica. He never saw it.

Christopher Hawthorne tours OC's Harbor Boulevard

harbor-blvd-lat-graphic-gra.jpg Nice line: Harbor Boulevard's architecture, "largely anonymous and inward-looking, is marked by a studied blandness...that recipe has produced on Harbor a feeling of unnatural civility — the architectural equivalent of a forced smile."

Time travel video: Googie coffee shops of LA

Six-minute clip from Harry Pallenberg looks at the rise of Googie coffee shop architecture around Los Angeles. Included are old clips of Astro Burger, the old Carnation building on Wilshire Boulevard, a Van de Kamps drive-in, Ship's, Norm's, Pann's and an interview Googie architect Eldon Davis.

Photos: New Pauley Pavilion

pauley-pavilion-front-sign.jpg If you remember Pauley Pavilion as dark and dated, look again. UCLA's renovated arena reopens in November, newly encased in glass and bathed in light. LA Observed photos.

HNTB's winning design for 6th Street bridge

sixth-st-bridge-view-htnb.jpg The "infrastructure" firm HNTB has won the city's international design competition for the new bridge that will replace the decaying concrete 6th Street Viaduct over the Los Angeles River. Here's what they have in mind.

Richard Neutra's offices in Silver Lake for rent

neutra-offices-curbed.jpg Dion Neutra has put his father's old Glendale Boulevard offices up for sale before. Now he's listing them for lease on Craigslist as "a pristine example of the commercial work of a seminal architect of the Modernist movement" and as "the only surviving uncompromised example of Neutra commercial design."

Pedro E. Guerrero, photographer from Art Center was 95

SturgesHouse.jpg Many in Los Angeles just became acquainted with the architectural photographs of Pedro E. Guerrero this April when he appeared at an exhibition of his work at Wodbury University's gallery...

When Ayn Rand lived in the Valley

von-sternberg-home.jpg With Ayn Rand in the media conversation around Paul Ryan and the Republican convention, here's a look at the home that Rand used to occupy in Northridge. And what a house it was — if it still existed, the Richard Neutra design might conceivably be the most architecturally renowned home in the San Fernando Valley.

Appreciating Richard Neutra's Hall of Records

hall-of-records-zevweb.jpg The county's Hall of Records might be the least appreciated of the government office buildings strewn around what used to be called downtown's Civic Center. I would bet that many visitors to Grand Park, which will open a new section on its back side in September, have no idea of the building's name or function. Its name is actually a misnomer these days — the county Registrar-Recorder took most of the eponymous records to Norwalk more than a decade ago. But the hall has sterling LA architectural roots.

Chris Burden's favorite Westwood office tower

helmut-jahn-tower.jpg Artist Chris Burden used to see the Helmut Jahn-designed Tower building at Wilshire and Midvale Avenue on his trips to and from UCLA, where he taught for 26 years. It's a "visually complex and satisfying office building" that gives him pleasure, as he explains.

Another Big Boy bites the dust

vt-bobs-drivein.jpg The Bob's Big Boy in Torrance is set to close Sept. 3. Cause of death? "A general lack of sales," the owner says. Boy, Bob's used to be big in LA.

Revisiting the Eames home after 57 years

schoener-eames-house.jpg No blogger has written this before, I suspect. Allon Schoener, the New York author transplanted to Boyle Heights who posts as The Reluctant Angeleno, recently visited the iconic home of Charles and Ray Eames in Pacific Palisades for the first time in a long time. "I had been there often between 1951 and 1955," he says. Let him explain.

Huntington to close and renovate main hall for a year

huntington-exhibhall-hunt.jpg The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens in San Marino announced Wednesday it will close the Main Exhibition Hall on June 5. After renovation and reinstallation with "a new, dynamic permanent exhibition designed to provoke visitors’ sense of connection to history and literature," the hall will reopen in fall 2013.
hwd-bowl-bathrooms.jpg Yes, the long wait is over. We now know what the bathrooms will look like when the Hollywood Bowl season opens. Courtesy of ZevWeb.

Lloyd Wright's Moore house demolished in Palos Verdes

moore-house-after-pv.jpg The Los Angeles Conservancy says that the 1959 home by architect Lloyd Wright was torn down on Wednesday, "the day after the Palos Verdes Estates City Council denied the Conservancy's appeal of the decision to allow the home's demolition."
atocha-madrid-flavorwire.jpg Flavorpill's Los Angeles bias is showing through again — not that we're complaining. Its Flavorwire site has put Union Station, sometimes called the last great American rail station to be built, in 1939, high on its aggregation of The Most Beautiful Train Stations in the World.

Touring the sites of famous Julius Shulman photos in LA

stahl+house+pool+view.jpg The New York Times Travel section on Sunday offered a tour, with online slide show, of locations in the Los Angeles area that the late Julius Shulman photographed. "Shulman captured Los Angeles and its surroundings in the middle of the 20th century as the city was shedding its small-town roots and becoming an international capital."
SturgesHouse.jpg Pedro E Guerrero: Photographs of Modern Life" is on exhibition at the Woodbury University Hollywood Gallery through April 25. Guerrero, who is now 94, was a close friend of, and the photographer for, Frank Lloyd Wright.

Peeking into Wilshire Boulevard Temple's restoration

wilshire+temple_renovation+sg.jpg KCRW's Saul Gonzalez has aired his report inside the renovation of the Wilshire Boulevard Temple that I gave a little advance look at a couple of weeks ago. "While driving down Wilshire Boulevard early one morning about a month ago, I spotted a beautiful combination of form, function and construction-an exo-skeleton of scaffolding enveloping one of L.A.’s most treasured architectural monuments."

Imagining the 6th Street bridge

6th-street-bridge-city.jpg Mayor Villaraigosa, architect Alex Ward and others consider replacements for the 6th Street Viaduct on "DnA" with Frances Anderton on KCRW. Listen there Previously at LA Observed: 6th Street...

Inside Wilshire Boulevard Temple's restoration

wilshire+temple_renovation+sg.jpg KCRW reporter Saul Gonzalez took this shot of the inside of the Wilshire Boulevard Temple synagogue during rehab of the National Register of Historic Places site.

Wilshire subway to devour A+D Museum, galleries

AplusD-Museum.jpg An op-ed piece protests the plan by Metro to raze the Wilshire Boulevard buildings that house the A+D Architecture and Design Museum and nearby galleries in order to stage construction of the Purple Line stop at Fairfax Avenue.

Architecture critic Paul Goldberger jumps to Vanity Fair

Goldberger had been at the New Yorker since leaving the New York Times, where he won a Pulitzer Prize, in 1997. Is this the end for architecture at the New Yorker?

Architectural sites that define a fifth of LA County

reece-interchange-googlemaps.jpg They range from historic buildings such as the Dominguez Rancho Adobe and UCLA's William Andrews Clark Library on West Adams to cultural sites such as the Dunbar Hotel on Central Avenue, the Watts Towers and Angelus Funeral Home.

Music in the Bradbury Building

bradbury-vertical-dacamera.jpg The Da Camera Society's Chamber Music in Historic Sites series certainly will live up to the latter part of its name with Saturday's shows.

Architect charged in death of firefighter at Hollywood Hills home

glenn-allen-lafd.jpg Gerhard Albert Becker was arrested Saturday on his arrival from Spain at LAX, and he's scheduled to be arraigned this afternoon on a charge of involuntary manslaughter in the death last year of LAFD veteran Glenn Allen.

Convention Center designs released to mixed reviews

lacoex-rendering.jpg Councilmembers Jan Perry and Bill Rosendahl reacted generally positively to the design, while Councilman Ed Reyes said the project should include more benefits for the area's residents.

The Chinese-American architect who integrated Silver Lake

eugene-choy-home-tesla.jpg Architect Eugene Kinn Choy overcame the anti-Chinese covenants and racism of 1940s Los Angeles to settle in Silver Lake and build this modernist home on Castle Street, near the reservoir.

Jazz Bakery coming back to Culver City in style

kirk-douglas-theatre-east.jpg Ruth Price's Jazz Bakery received approval today from the Culver City city council to develop a new Frank Gehry-designed, 250-seat theater.

Why are L.A. skyscrapers so flat on top?

dtla-skyscrapers-flattop.jpg City code since 1974 has required helipads on top of tall buildings. (Luckily for the First Interstate Building, circa 1988.) Things could be different, though, if plans move ahead for skyscrapers along Hollywood Boulevard. Empire State Building anyone?

Looking back: the Wilshire Grand hotel *

hoffman-bldg-lapl.jpg The Wilshire Grand, closing this week to be torn down and make way for a new high-rise hotel and office tower, opened in 1952 as the Statler.

On the work and lives of Ray and Charles Eames *

EamesXmas-682x1024.jpg American Masters on PBS on Monday night aired "Charles and Ray Eames: the Architect and the Painter," about the famed Los Angeles design team and couple.

Dreaming of (under) the 7th Street bridge

7th-street-bridge-mercado.jpg Fun story on Off-Ramp over the weekend about architect Arthur Golding's concept of an open-air mercado with cafes spanning the Los Angeles River.

Farmers Field: New artist renderings

farmers-field-field-open-roof.jpg AEG and Gensler released fresh looks at the proposed Downtown football stadium.

Times embraces the Globe Lobby again

LATlino 001.jpg The lobby will host Thursday lunch chats once a month with L.A. Times journalists.

6th Street viaduct as photo op

6th-street-yard-sign.jpg Concrete in the 1933 bridge connecting Downtown with the Eastside is rotting from the inside and the structure is slated for replacement.

What becomes of Johnie's in LACMA deal?

johnies_coffee_shop-martin.jpg For a lot of us, the future (or potential fate) of Johnie's Coffee Shop was one of the first questions to come to mind after the news broke that the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences would buy the former May Company across the street for a film museum.

West Hollywood opens its new library

we-ho-library.jpg The new library at San Vicente and Melrose was dedicated with a big celebration on Saturday, leading into Sunday's West Hollywood Book Fair. The WeHo city council will meet from...

Kenneth Reiner, commissioned Silver Lake's Silvertop home

silvertop-birdseye.jpg Reiner never got to live there, but the home has become a modernist landmark considered one of John Lautner's masterpieces.

Reading L.A. freeways

405-looking-north.jpg In his quest to read 25 books about Los Angeles this year, LAT architecture critic Christopher Hawthorne is up to David Brodsly's slim 1981 work "L.A. Freeway: An Appreciative Essay."

Speaking of Fred Harvey, a book and some art

LosAngelesCA-UnionRestauran.jpg A biography of Harvey and a Visiting Blogger excerpt about the woman who designed the floor of the cafe at Union Station.

Photos before Staples Center and the new Convention Center

convention-center-1991-lafd.jpg The LAFD Historical Society has posted some good aerial photos of the Convention Center being expanded circa 1991 — before Staples Center or L.A. Live came to the Downtown neighborhood.

Eldon Davis, icon of L.A.'s googie architecture was 94

googies-olive-fifth.jpg We have Eldon Davis to thank for many of those Googie-style coffee shops that sprouted along Southern California boulevards in the 1950s, then spread across the country.

SCI-Arc buys its building finally

sci-arc-bldg.jpg The Southern California Institute of Architecture has bought the century-old former rail freight depot it occupies in the Arts District.

WWLA does Wilshire Grand story

Tonight's Which Way, L.A.? on KCRW delved more deeply into today's City Council approval of the special lighting rules for the Korean-backed project planned for the Wilshire Grand hotel site at 7th and Figueroa.

Conservancy names preservation award winners

Gov. Jerry Brown (and Mark Lacter) may want to do away with the city Community Redevelopment Agency, but it's a hit at least with the Los Angeles Conservancy. The group is giving the CRA one of its nine yearly preservation awards.

AEG makes it official: Gensler to design stadium

stadium-first-look-gensler.jpg If AEG gets the go-ahead to build its NFL stadium and events center on the footprint of the existing Los Angeles Convention Center, L.A.-based Gensler will be the designer.

Valley finally gets another concert hall

valley-perf-arts-center-big.jpg Forty seven years later, the San Fernando Valley gets another performing arts space and it's bigger and grander.

Friars Club in Beverly Hills coming down

friars-club-la.jpg The Los Angeles Conservancy sent out an alert this afternoon saying the owner of the 1961 building that housed the Friars Club has begun razing the unofficial landmark, with no plans yet filed for a new structure at the site on Little Santa Monica Boulevard.

Reading L.A. with Christopher Hawthorne

casestudy22.jpg The L.A. Times architecture critic announced today that he will read and post brief blog essays over the next year on "25 of the most significant books on Southern California...

Richfield angel found in Silver Lake

richfield-angel-silverlake.jpg Eric Lynxwiler's quest to find any surviving terra cotta angels from Downtown's old Richfield building has turned up a nice sample.

Broad museum renderings

broad-lobby.jpg The Broad Art Foundation this morning announced the designs for The Broad, the name it's now using for the museum to be built on Bunker Hill to hold Eli and Edythe Broad's art collection.

Morning Buzz: Thursday 1.6.11

Design for The Broad, permanent housing bust in the Inland Empire, Brown's new team and Rihanna's topless cover does well, plus more.

Hawthorne: stadium idea shows L.A. needs a plan

stadium-first-look-gensler.jpg Architecture critic Christopher Hawthorne makes a civic splash in the L.A. Times by pointing out that the Downtown NFL stadium Tim Leiweke and Casey Wasserman are pushing is another case of Los Angeles going about it all wrong.

Eric's Richfield angel featured in the Times

eric-and-angel.jpg In today's L.A. Times, Bob Pool picks up and runs with Eric Lynxwiler's visiting blogger post from a couple of weeks ago on the terra cota angel that sits in his Arts District loft.

Hawthorne on stadium proposals: feh

If the three competing designs for Phil Anschutz's downtown football stadium were an NFL division, LAT architecture critic Christopher Hawthorne says "they'd be the NFC West."

Eric Owen Moss and Culver City

In this week's New Yorker, architecture writer Paul Goldberger takes in the Eric Owen Moss structures in Culver City.

Calling all Richfield angels

eric-and-angel.jpg In a Visiting Blogger post at LA Observed, J. Eric Lynxwiler announces he has become the proud owner of a 1½-ton terra-cotta angel that used to stand guard over downtown...

Julius Shulman home sells for $2.25 million

shulman-house.jpg Escrow closed last week on the late photographer's Raphael S. Soriano-designed home on Woodrow Wilson Drive — Los Angeles historic-cultural monument #325.

Phil's Diner in NoHo gets a new home

phils-diner-2.jpg Phil's Diner was a beloved hangout for its fans in North Hollywood when it was located on Chandler Boulevard, from the 1920s until about ten years ago.

About those missing Hall of Records documents

Thumbnail image for hall-of-justice-stairs.jpg ZevWeb has posted a clarification about what happened with public documents left behind in the old Hall of Records in Downtown.

Inside the vacant Hall of Justice

hall-of-justice-050.jpg A photo tour of the 1925 Hall of Justice at Temple and Spring streets, closed since the Northridge earthquake.

Return of the Neon Cruise: back by popular demand

We're doing another LA Observed night on the world-famous Neon Cruise on Saturday, October 16.

A campanile in Culver City *

The Eric Owen Moss art tower beside the Expo Line, as observed by John Rabe, Mark Peel and Scott Timberg — and Moss.

Alternate design for Broad museum on Bunker Hill

broad-museum-rapeport.jpg Why, I think that's a Kaufman and Broad home.

John Chase, West Hollywood's urban designer was 57

john-chase-gelatobaby.jpg Chase, the author of several books on urbanism and Los Angeles, died Friday of an apparent heart attack. He was the godfather to the daughter of Frances Anderton, host of...

Architectural Digest moving to New York

Conde Nast has named Margaret Russell the new editor-in-chief of Architectural Digest, succeeding Paige Rense. But the bigger news is that the magazine will move from Los Angeles to New Yor

Civic Park in Downtown shows signs of life *

Christopher Hawthorne seems to like what he sees happening at the new park envisioned for the ugly mall that runs from the Music Center east most of the way to City Hall.

LAPD's new architecture, pro and con

lapd-valley-bureau.jpg Governing magazine's John Buntin surveyed the new architecturally distinct police stations the LAPD has been building this decade — and he found something missing.

What Stephen Kanner meant to Westwood Village

IN-N-OUT-WW-KANNER.jpg A tribute that Westwood restaurateur and community leader Steven Sann wrote about architect Stephen Kanner, who died Friday of cancer at 54, shows how one architect can freshen and re-shape a place like Westwood (itself planned in the 1920s) while honoring its past.

Gehry's Bilbao Guggenheim voted #1 by VF architecturians

guggenheim-bilbao.jpg Vanity Fair asked architects and those who circulate among them, such as critic Paul Goldberger, to nominate the five most important buildings, bridges or monuments built since 1980. Plus their pick for the "greatest work of architecture" in the 21st century.

Architecture awards for LAPD, L.A. Live

The Los Angeles Business Council handed out its architectural awards today. The top prizes went to the new Los Angeles Police Department administration building across from City Hall and to...

You want architecturally modern restaurants?

101-coffee-shop.jpg You've got them. Chronicler of all things modern Chris Nichols has put together a quick web guide to 33 local eateries that fit the criteria.

LA Observed on KCRW: What a trip

sfv-the-onion.jpg My weekly column on LA Observed tonight talks about my visit to the Valley to talk to Los Angeles Conservancy folks at The Onion, the Unitarian church where the first Los Angeles acid test was held in 1966.

Eli Broad considered, architecturally speaking

eli-broad-art.jpg Times architecture critic Christopher Hawthorne considers the record as Eli Broad prepares to cause another museum to be erected in Los Angeles, probably Downtown on Bunker Hill.

Heading to North Hills

sfv-the-onion.jpg I'm the keynote speaker this afternoon at the Los Angeles Conservancy's annual meeting.

Last Remaining Seats opens with a hit

how-to-succeed.jpg he Los Angeles Theatre on Broadway was packed last night for the opening film of the 24th year of Last Remaining Seats.

Tour and cocktails at Julius Shulman's home

julius-shulman-home-modcom.jpg The Los Angeles Conservancy's Modern Committee is raising money this week with a Wednesday screening of "Visual Acoustics, the Modernism of Julius Shulman" at the Egyptian Theatre and a Saturday bus trip to the late photographer's home in the Hollywood Hills.

LAO on KCRW: Riding The High Line

high-line-long.jpg In today's column on KCRW, which just aired at 6:44 p.m. (new day and time), I muse on some of the differences between New York and Los Angeles via public...

Forget saving the Hollywood sign *

hollywohot.jpg Instead of preserving the Hollywood sign in its static condition as a legally condoned supergraphic, why not embrace its inner hotel potential?

LAX Theme Building all spiffed up

lax-theme-bldg-nyt.jpg I noticed at LAX the other day that the skin is back on the iconic Theme Building, with a fresh coat of white paint. Renovation only took, what, three years? New York Times bureau chief Jennifer Steinhauer explained the meaning of it all this weekend for the out-of-towners.

Westwood Village movie house gems saved

westwood_village_theater.jpg The Bruin and the older Village (the one with the Fox sign on the tower) are being taken over by Regency Theatres.

Architect killed in crash after SCI-Arc lecture

raimund-abraham.jpg Raimund Abraham, a visiting faculty member at the Southern California Institute of Architecture, died in a Downtown crash hours after giving a lecture at the school.

L.A. architecture in this month's magazines

pellissier-lapl.jpg n the February issue of Vogue, writer Amy Ephron talks about befriending (when she was a child in Beverly Hills) the man next door who she knew as "Samuel Clemens." Only recently did she learn it was Stiles O. Clements, one of the most under-appreciated names in Los Angeles architecture.

W Hotel opens in Hollywood

w-hollywood-curbed.jpg The first reviews of how it fits in the cityscape are mixed.

'Best architecture of decade' includes OC's waterworks

OC-GWRS.jpg Switzerland's Large Hadron Collider is also on the list, along with Norway's seed vault and the iPhone. No, it's not your typical architecture list.

New on the skyline, the Ritz-Carlton tower

ritzcarltontowerbdt.jpg The JW Marriott and Ritz Carlton hotels at L.A. Live don't open until Feb. 15, but Blogdowntown was on hand last night when the tower was lit up for a City of Hope gala.

Demolished buildings of the '00s

Before we get too far away from New Year's, here's Curbed LA's look at some of the buildings that Los Angeles lost (or discarded) during the decade just past.

Room with a view

cityhallfranklinavenue.jpg The Modern Committee of the Los Angeles Conservancy celebrated 25 years, the holidays and four photographers on Monday night in the Mayor Tom Bradley Room atop City Hall. Half the...

Julius Shulman home listed for sale

The home on Woodrow Wilson Drive designed by Raphael Soriano — and built for Shulman — is listed at $2.495 million vacant. It includes an extensively wooded yard, including redwood...

Columbia Square comes to planning commission

Plans to tear down the old CBS radio and television home at Sunset and Gower for a condo tower go to the city planning commission tomorrow. There are several old...

Drama over 9900 Wilshire

The former Robinson's store at the edge of Beverly Hills has been the target of a drawn-out financial and legal wrangle, which Dakota Smith tries to unravel over at Curbed...

L.A. Real Creativity awards

The Urban Land Institute's local council has created the Los Angeles Real Creativity awards and will hand out the first four at a dinner on Saturday in the lobby of...

Broad's museum sites considered

Since we broke the news Friday night about Eli Broad's museum talks with Santa Monica, there have been copycat blog posts — plus a nice mention by Tyler Green at...

Eyes on L.A.

My KCRW commentary today talked about two photographers of L.A. who approach their subject from different directions, Bruce Davidson and Martin Schall. It aired, as every Friday, at 4:44 p.m....

Meet James Goldstein (again *)

jamesgoldstein.jpg Chances are you have seen James Goldstein around town — and how could you miss him and his python cowboy hat? He shows up at fashion events and courtside at...

AD leads list it would rather not be on

archdigestcover.jpg Even I've heard the rumors that Paige Rense's days as supreme leader at Architectural Digest are numbered. This will surely fuel such talk: AD led all Conde Nast monthly magazines...

Martin Schall, here in L.A. (again)

martinschallwithcamera.jpg Longtime readers know Martin Schall as the German creator of you-are-here.com, the great website of Los Angeles photographs. Although I've been posting since 2004 about the 42-year-old who runs the...

What about the HerEx building?

All this talk of the 20th anniversary of the Los Angeles Herald Examiner closing led Curbed LA to ask, sensibly, what has become of the plans to renovate the old...

Greene & Greene on the move

Eric Spillman of KTLA covers the night-time move through Pasadena of the 1912 Herkimer Arms Apartments, designed by Charles and Henry Greene. The building, apparently the only apartment house...

Wallsten, Thornburg move on from LAT

Pater Wallsten, a star in the Los Angeles Times Washington bureau that became the Tribune chain's bureau, has jumped to the Wall Street Journal. He will cover national politics, "an...

Celebrating Julius Shulman

juliusshulmanbw.jpg Colleagues, family and admirers of Julius Shulman gathered at Getty Center this afternoon to remember and applaud "truly one of the great photographers of the 20th century," in the words...

View from Case Study House #22

casestudy22b.jpg I visited a Los Angeles icon yesterday for the first time. Before we got there I told friends I half-expected to be disappointed. Boy, was I not disappointed. As soon...

LA Observed on KCRW

My four-minute segment today (back after two weeks off) veers from a weekend train trip up to Santa Barbara to confess why I don't care whether the Century Plaza Hotel...

Save the Dutton's building?

duttonapplause.jpg Investor Charles T. Munger's latest plan for the Barry Building in Brentwood is to tear it down, build underground parking, then put in a shopping center that shares the courtyard...

Frank Gehry on Disney Hall design

"Forget the exterior," Gehry says in this recent interview at the Aspen Ideas Festival, via Curbed LA. Covering the interior in wood cost an extra $5 million, and was...

Century Plaza goes national

centuryplazadovarganes.jpg Tomorrow's New York Times real estate page ventures into the Century Plaza preservation dispute. Diane Keaton, listing the hotel's supposed glories, likens the design to a "sexy woman surrounded by...

Showcase Theatre on La Brea closed

showcaseregent.jpg It hasn't been called the Showcase for awhile now, and many longtimers still think of the movie house on La Brea Avenue south of Melrose as the Gordon. Doesn't matter...

Live by flakkery, die by....

Now that the owner of the Century Plaza wants to tear down the hotel, Dakota Smith at Curbed LA dug up what developer Michael Rosenfeld's release said when he bought...

Houses for a Californian imagination

Author D.J. Waldie ruminates on the Spanish Colonial Revival style, inspired by dinner at the Santa Monica home of Angel City Press publishers Paddy Calistro and Scott McAuley. From his...

Wilshire Boulevard Temple sanctuary closed indefinitely *

When a foot-long chunk of plaster fell from the dome over the sanctuary, temple officials decided to suspend services, says a Jewish Journal story that raises the specter of possibly...

Variety Tower joins the skyline

The Variety name went up in giant letters today on the former People's Bank tower in the Miracle Mile stretch of Wilshire. The Hollywood trade moves into the top floor...

Mobile architecture

A 1941 Richard Neutra house was recently moved from Brentwood to Angelino Heights. Photographer Brian Thomas Jones has a slide show up at LATimes.com. Though it's rarely seen now now,...

Where is it?

Last time I was at LAX I wondered aloud, momentarily disoriented, what the big skeleton-like structure was looming over the traffic loop. "Uh, the Theme Building," my companion said, as...

Preservation awards list

The Los Angeles Conservancy is out with its preservation award winners for the 27th year. Of the residential restoration of the Eastern Columbia building downtown, they say: "Magnificent yet long...

Nation's first 'Feng Shui-inspired' McDonald's

The first of hundreds of stores to get a toned-down design hoping people will stick around is located off the 60 freeway in Hacienda Heights. Eater Los Angeles digests the...

Final Ambassador teardown

Crews are on hand today at the old Ambassador Hotel site on Wilshire Boulevard, taking down the Cocoanut Grove, ballrooms and last remaining remnants. The Los Angeles Conservancy recently gave...

'House of Tomorrow' for sale again

One of the most unusual, and storied, commercial buildings on Wilshire Boulevard is back on the market. The one-story, ranch-style office complex at the southeast corner of Wilshire and Highland...
New at LA Observed
Giant floating ducky
duck-tall-ships-meg.jpgThe big rubber duck was the most photographed thing about the tall ships festival recently held in San Pedro. Photo: Mayor Eric Garcetti.
City of LA historical photos
lachs-baldwin-hills.jpgMen on a storm drain project near the Baldwin Hills in the Depression. More images from newly digitized collection
LAO__Garcetti&Ballmer copy.jpg Take My Picture Gary Leonard is a regular weekly feature of LA Observed. See it bigger.
Napa quake lessons
napa-quake-street.jpgAt last we know who woke up early — and who stayed up. More
La chambre photographique
la-chambre-sb-600.jpgSanta Barbara. Click to enlarge.