Rebuilding Place in the Urban Space

"A community’s physical form, rather than its land uses, is its most intrinsic and enduring characteristic." [Katz, EPA] This blog focuses on place and placemaking and all that makes it work--historic preservation, urban design, transportation, asset-based community development, arts & cultural development, commercial district revitalization, tourism & destination development, and quality of life advocacy--along with doses of civic engagement and good governance watchdogging.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Historic Preservation Tuesday: Frank Lloyd Wright Hollyhock House reopens in Los Angeles

Exterior of Hollyhock House, Los Angeles. Photographer: Joshua White / JWPictures.

After a multi-year renovation, on Friday, the City of Los Angeles will reopen Frank Lloyd Wright’s Hollyhock House, which is located in the Barnsdall Art Park.  This property is part of a grouping of Wright's buildings that have been nominated for listing on the UNESCO World Heritage List ("L.A.'s Hollyhock House among Wright's buildings up for World Heritage List," Los Angeles Times).

The restoration effort was spearheaded by a wide range of LA government agencies and nonprofit organizations:  City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA), the Department of Recreation and Parks, Project Restore--a preservation group focused on the restoration of historic properties owned by the City of Los Angeles, Public Works - Bureau of Engineering, the Department of General Services, the Los Angeles Police Department, and the Barnsdall Art Park Foundation.

Library, Hollyhock House, Los Angeles. Photographer: Joshua White / JWPictures.

Hollyhock House is the first house of Wright’s second period and his first residence in Southern California.

Named for Barnsdall’s favorite flower, Hollyhock is incorporated throughout the design scheme of the residence.  The original floors, windows, doors, decorative molding, and long-forgotten paint colors have been recreated with utmost attention to detail. The renovation took place from 2008 though 2014, with a total of $4,359,000 spent on the project.

Special events for Friday's unveiling.  To mark the occasion, Mayor Eric Garcetti and Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell, chair of the City Council Committee on Arts, Parks, Health, Aging and Los Angeles River, will lead an Official Ribbon Cutting Ceremony with the project’s collaborators at 4:00 p.m.

As part of the reopening, the City of Los Angeles and the Barnsdall Art Park Foundation will open Hollyhock House for self-guided tours for 24 hours, commencing at 4:00 p.m. on February 13 until 4:00 p.m. on February 14, 2015.

Hollyhock House tours.  Going forward, starting next week, the reopened Hollyhock House will feature self-guided “Walk Wright In” tours on Thursdays through Sundays from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. for a fee of $7 for adults, $3 for students, seniors and children under 12.

Barnsdale Art Park.  Hollyhock House is the centerpiece of a public park, the 36-acre site Barnsdall Art Park, which was donated to the city decades ago.  Over the past few decades additional facilities have been added, including a modern theatre, the Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery, and artist studios.

The theater is used for plays, dance, music, spoken word, lecture, film, and other events, and is home to the Independent Shakespeare Company's summer series and the Silverlake Conservatory of Music summer music camps for youth.

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At 12:47 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Julia Morgan was a much better - and licensed- architect [ FLW never got his architects license and had others make his drawings and do his engineering] she is basically ignored by the mainstream - she rebuilt a lot of San Francisco after the 1906 quake- she was also the first female architect from the US to pass the rigorous Ecole Des Beauxs Artes architecture exam and degree in Paris. She did not go around parading herself as "the world's greatest architect" as FLW often did and she did not advocate tearing down histroic structures- as FLW advocated so often. He was a total a-hole. I am not the only one who believes this either.

At 3:44 PM, Blogger Richard Layman said...

there was a show on PBS last week on the Hearst Castle, which Julia Morgan designed and shepherded through construction.

But Wright's buildings are attractive. His work on interiors was novel for the time. The stained glass window work was novel as well.

I think it's possible to appreciate that body of work without being equally admiring of his views on cities (he didn't like cities) or personal behavior.

At 10:38 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

yes his early work was OK but he was not unique by any means nor did he really invent anything new. The hagiography and abject worship of this jerk really gets me riled up and angry. He hated cities and anyone who did not look like him. He was a super bigot and not progressive. he ideas were crazy and destructive.There are a number of far better architects who were for real- and yet do not get any acclaim or attention.


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