Monday, January 24, 2011

Thaddeus Lowe Residence, c.1885

Prof. Thaddeus Lowe lived in this Queen Anne style house while his house (since demolished) on Orange Grove was being completed. Located at 919 Columbia Street in the Lower Arroyo Seco neighborhood of Pasadena, California.

Thaddeus Sobieski Coulincourt Lowe (1832 - 913), also known as Professor T. S. C. Lowe, was an American Civil War aeronaut, scientist and inventor, mostly self-educated in the fields of chemistry, meteorology, and aeronautics. By the late 1850s he was well known for his advanced theories in the meteorological sciences. During the Civil War he served as aeronaut, performing aerial reconnaissance on the Confederate troops on behalf of the Union Army. In July 1861 Lowe was appointed Chief Aeronaut of the Union Army Balloon Corps by President Abraham Lincoln.

Cravens Estate, Lewis P. Hobart, Architect 1929

Designed for John and Mildred Cravens by San Francisco architect Lewis P. Hobart, the French chateau mansion took two years to build and was inspired by the grand Chateau Vaux-le-Vicomte in France. It currently is home of the Pasadena Chapter of the American Red Cross.

Located at 430 Madeline Drive in the Lower Arroyo Seco neighborhood of Pasadena.

Pitcairn House, Charles & Henry Greene, Architects 1906

Charles and Henry Greene designed the house as a residence for Robert Pitcairn, Jr. of Pittsburgh, PA. The house features a stained shingle exterior, cantelivered sleeping porches, massive exposed beams and broad terraces that integrate the house with the site. The private Westridge School purchased the house for $50,000 in 1973, employing architects Roland E. Coate, Jr. and Tim Anderson to refurbish the house and adapt it for school use. Furthur restoration work was commissioned by the architectural firm of Moule and Polyzoides in 1966.

Located at 324 Madeline Street on the campus of Westridge School.

Dunham House, Carl L. Maston, Architect 1956

On of my favorite modernist homes, the Dunham House is situated in a park-like setting in one of Pasadena's most exclusive neighborhoods. Located at 495 Madeline Drive (best seen from Stonebridge Drive),

During his long and distinguised career, Maston designed more than 100 buildings, including private residences, apartment buildings, shopping centers and large-scale institutional projects. After graduation from USC, he worked for several established architectural firms, including A. Quincy Jones, Fred Emmons, Phil Daniel, and Allied Architects. After World War II, he returned to Los Angeles, opening his first office in Beverly Hills. In 1946, he designed the Pandora Apartments, marking the beginning of his experimentation with garden apartment design. In 1954, Maston completed his portion of the quintessential California apartment complex, the National Boulevard Apartments (Maston designed one building, architect Ray Kappe the other). Among his most noted accomplishments are the Cal Poly Pomona College of Environmental Design, and the Creative Arts Building at the California State University, San Bernardino.

Old Mill of Banbury Cross c. 1907

In the early 20th century, Adolphus Busch (of the Anheuser-Busch family) lived on a grand estate in Pasadena, California. The home overlooked the Arroyo Seco canyon, bordering Bellefontaine St. on the northern end to Madeline Dr. on the southern end. The house was enhanced by beautiful gardens, which were offered to the City of Pasadena for use as a public park in 1938. When the city refused Busch's offer, he sold the land to investors for development into private homes. Only the old Hansel and Gretel mill, which served as the tea house for the gardens remains. Located at 485 Madeline Drive in the Lower Arroyo Seco neighborhood of Pasadena, California.

R.R. Blacker House, Charles & Henry Greene 1907

Designed in 1907 by Architects Greene & Greene designed the house for Robert Rue Blacker, a lumber magnate at the cost of $100,000 in 1907. The house is regarded as a masterpiece of the American Arts and Crafts Movement. The house displays the harmony associated with the Japanese wood building style, with wide hanging eaves and an emphasis on horizontal lines.

The house, located at 1177 Hillcrest Avenue in Pasadena, is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.

Culbertson House, Charles & Henry Greene 1911

Designed by Charles and Henry Greene in 1911 for Cordelia, Kate, and Margaret Culbertson, three unmarried sisters with money to spend and very specific ideas on what they wanted in a house. The house is one of the Greene Brothers’ most interesting designs, with a green tile roof and fireplace of Numibian marble. The sisters wanted all the rooms on one level but objected to ground-floor bedrooms. The Greenes solved this by designing a U-shaped residence wrapped around a central courtyard with the bedroom wing on the brink of a small canyon overlooking a wooded slope in back, thus achieving the look and feel of a second floor.

Located at 1188 Hillcrest Avenue in the Oak Knoll neighborhood of Pasadena.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Rochester House, T. Beverly Keim, Architect 1910

Classical Revival home designed for the Rochester family, owners of a construction company by Architect T. Beverly Keim Jr. in 1913. The house cost $100,00 to build, extravagant in a time when the average cost of an area house was about $3,000. The manor has 33 rooms, including six bedrooms, five baths, a library, servant's quarters and a ballroom on the third floor.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Bailenson House, Wallace Neff, Architect 1936

Celebrity Architect Wallace Neff designed the house in an eclectic Colonial Revival style for Lawrence W. Beilenson, General Counsel of the Screen Actor's Guild (since its founding in 1933). The house is currently (January 2011) in foreclosure and listed for sale for $1,849,000.

Located at 1946 N. Gramercy Place in the Los Feliz neighborhood of Los Angeles. If you have a keen interest in the work of Wallace Neff and would like to see this house, let me know and I'll give you a guided tour.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Glory of Past - Qutab Minar

Qutub Minar, behind the Alai Gate, is the tallest brick minaret in the world, and listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The five stage minaret was ordered in 1193 by India's first Muslim ruler, the Sultan of Delhi, Qutb-ud-din Aibak, to exceed the Jam Minaret in Afghanistan, but during his lifetime only the 14.3 meter wide base was completed. The third Sultan, Iltutmish completed the middle three levels, and by 1368 Sultan Firuz Shah Tughlaq added the fifth level, measuring 2.75 metres diagonally and completing the Minaret to reach 72 metres high.

Barlow House, Wallace Neff, Architect 1923-24

Barlow House, Wallace Neff, Architect 1923-24. Neff designed the villa for the wife of Dr. James Barlow, who invisioned a replica of the Villa Callazzi outside Florence. The photo is from the southern cortile of the villa, with views of the San Gabriel Valley below.

Located at the nirtheast corner of Michillinda Street and HIghland Avenue in Sierra Madre.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Paxson House, Buff & Hensman 1968

Architect Conrad Buff (Buff & Hensman) designed the house for Oxy alumnus and Emeritus Professor of Theater Omar Paxson '48 in 1968. Located near the Occidental College campus at 1911 Campus Road.

High Trilling Manor c.1932

English Tudor Style house located at 2106 Fern Dell Place on the edge of Griffith Park. The home of Theodore Heyck and David Rambo. Mr. Heyck is a trial lawyer with the office of the Los Angeles City Attorney. He graduated from Brown and received his law degree from New York Law School. Mr. Rambo is a playwright and television writer. He wrote “The Lady With All the Answers,” a play about the advice columnist Ann Landers that had its premiere at the Old Globe theater in San Diego in 2005. He has written 15 episodes of “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation” on CBS and is also a producer of the show.

Levin House, Rudolph M. Schindler, Architect 1925

Schindler remodeled an existing house for Hyman Levin in 1925, adding more rooms as the family grew. The house was restored by Stephanos Polyzoides in 1984. Original landscaping designed by Richard Neutra has matured to the extent that the house is barely visible from the street. Located at 2673 Dundee Place in the Los Feliz neighborhood of Los Angeles.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Levin House, Rudolph M. Schindler, Architect 1925

Shindler remodeled an existing house for Hyman Levin in 1925, adding more rooms as the family grew. The house was restored by Stephanos Polyzoides in 1984. Original landscaping designed by Richard Neutra has matured to the extent that the house is barely visible from the street. Located at 2673 Dundee Place in the Los Feliz neighborhood of Los Angeles.

Thursday, January 06, 2011

South Pasadena High School, Marsh, Smith & Powell 1937

Classic PWA Moderne style, designed by Marsh, Smith & Powell in 1937. A walk around the campus reveals a cohesive design statement: concrete benches in the courtyard are set in a zig-zag pattern; even the hedges are trimmed the same way!

The school has a number of well-known alumni, including actor William Holden, actress Hilary Swank and politician Mary Bono Mack. The school is located at 1401 Fremont Avenue in South Pasadena.

Monday, January 03, 2011

Brauer-Drobka Residence, Bardwell Case & Associates, Architects (Remodel) 2004

For a remodel of their home, Daniel Brauer and James Drobka selected the architectural firm Bardwell Case & Associates to replace a distressed 'bootleg' addition over the garage and rebuild the foundation. The result is a finely-tuned expression of Modernism that resonates with Silver Lake's architectural heritage. Stephen Bardwell was the lead architect on the project, completed in 2004. The addition. dubbed the 'Tiki Room', houses the owner's extensive collection of Tikis, Polynesian gods or images in stone or wood.

The Brauer-Drobka Residence is located at 3106 Berkeley Circle in Silver Lake.

Sunday, January 02, 2011

Shulman House & Studio, Raphael Soriano, Architect 1950

Shulman House & Studio, Raphael Soriano, Architect 1950
As the most prominent architectural photographer of the past seventy years, Julius Shulman has worked with nearly every important architect beginning with Richard Neutra (Kun House, 1938). In fact it was Neutra that launched Shulman's career, by introducing him to the leading architects of the day. In Neutra's protege, Raphael Soriano, Julius found a gifted architect that was perhaps more flexible than his mentor, easily incorporating Shulman's strong design preferences.

The steel and glass house is still occupied by Shulman, still going strong at age 98 (October 10, 2010, he will celebrate his 100th birthday). The famed photographer keeps a full schedule, lecturing and teaching, and much in demand for his photographic skills.

The Shulman House is located at 7875 Woodrow Wilson Drive in the Hollywood Hills. It was declared a Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument in 1987 (No. 325)

Wilshire Vermont Station- Arquitectonica Architects 2007

"photo safari" with Martin Schall, November 6, 2007. Miami firm Arquitectonica designed this eye-catching complex, sitting atop the Metro subway station in the heart of Koreatown. Located at the intersection of Vermont St. and Wilshire Blvd., the station is highlighted by a gigantic (8200 square foot) image by artist April Greiman. The complex held its grand opening on October 7, 2007.