Formosa 1140, Lorcan O'Herlihy Architects
Pacific Standard Time Presents: Modern Architecture in L.A. was a collaborative celebration of one of Southern California's most lasting contributions to postwar cultural life: modern architecture. Similar to Pacific Standard Time: Art in L.A. 1945-1980 but smaller in scale, this initiative presented a wide-ranging look at the region's modern architectural heritage and the significant contributions of L.A. architects to national and global developments in architecture. The Getty Foundation supported a series of nine exhibitions and related programs that took place April-September 2013 in conjunction with the Getty exhibitions Overdrive: L.A. Constructs the Future, 1940—1990 and In Focus: Ed Ruscha. Programming was concentrated during an "Architecture Month," from mid-May to mid-June. The Foundation provided grants to the following institutions:


Modern Architecture, A+D
 
A+D Architecture and Design Museum
Windshield Perspective


The automobile arguably defines the built environment of postwar Southern California. Windshield Perspective investigated the role of L.A.'s car culture in shaping the urban landscape through a case study of a dense and lively commuter thoroughfare. Using maps, film footage, photographs, and plans, the exhibition argued that the point of view created by the windshield is integral to both the formation and experience of the city.

Exhibition research support: $140,000 (2011); exhibition support: $120,000 (2012)


Smith and Williams, Community Facilities Planners Office
 
Art, Design & Architecture Museum at UC Santa Barbara
Outside In: The Architecture of Smith and Williams


The Smith and Williams firm decisively shaped the modern vocabulary of architecture in postwar Pasadena and Los Angeles County. Working in the wake of the first generation of avant-garde architects in L.A. and riding the wave of the postwar building boom, partners Whitney R. Smith and Wayne R. Williams developed a pragmatic modernism that, through remarkable site planning and design, integrated landscape and building. This monographic exhibition drew on the university's outstanding archival collections.

Exhibition research support: $140,000 (2011); exhibition and publication support: $125,000 (2012)


Center for Land Use Interpretation
On-Site Office Trailers: Invisible Architecture of the Urban Environment


Though typically overlooked or ignored, office trailers embody many of the key principles of modernist design, namely modularity and prefabrication. The Center for Land Use Interpretation presented an exhibition and tours devoted to these structures and the quotidian aspects of the building process. The exhibition took place in an office trailer, and related programming included visits to office trailers at high-profile construction and engineering sites in Los Angeles, such as the Expo Line Light Rail Station and the Broad on Grand Avenue.

Programming support: $79,000 (2012)


Community Arts Resources
CicLAvia: Modern Architecture on Wilshire Boulevard


While the Modern Architecture in L.A. exhibitions brought the city into the space of the museum, CicLAvia will bring the story of Los Angeles' postwar architecture back into the streets. CicLAvia—the nation's largest car–free/open streets event—provides a fitting platform for calling attention to the region's built environment. Community Arts Resources, the producer of CicLAvia, closed Wilshire Boulevard from downtown to Fairfax to car traffic and opened it to bicyclists, pedestrians, and skateboarders, providing Angelenos and visitors the rare opportunity to slow down and observe the buildings of this characteristically L.A. thoroughfare. Participants learned about iconic modern buildings and styles, everything from Art Deco to 1950s Googie architecture, through an array of public programs including family–friendly workshops and a downloadable, interactive multimedia guide.

Programming support: $100,000 (2012)


Jones House, Julius Shulman @ J. Paul Getty Trust
 
Hammer Museum
A. Quincy Jones: Building For Better Living


A. Quincy Jones received acclaim for his residential designs for both wealthy and middle-income clients, and he was among the first architects to give serious consideration to the tract house, an icon of postwar construction. While Jones' impact on the built landscape of Southern California was as strong as that of many of his contemporaries, his work has never been the subject of a monographic exhibition. The Hammer's exhibition illuminated the architect's sensitivity to scale, material, and his clients' needs.

Exhibition research support: $170,000 (2011); exhibition and publication support: $260,000 (2012)


Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens
Form and Landscape: Southern California Edison and the Los Angeles Basin, 1940-1990


The Huntington-USC Institute on California and the West presented an innovative online exhibition and related public programming focusing on the Huntington's Southern California Edison archive, a little-known but highly significant record of the impact of electricity on regional urban growth that includes stunning historic photographs. Intended by Edison as a documentary record of the corporation's growth, projects, and technological innovations, the photographs also capture the landscape, architecture, and urban fabric of Los Angeles.

Programming support: $100,000 (2012)


Koenig, Case Study House #21 169;Timothy Sakamoto
 
W. Keith and Janet Kellogg University Art Gallery at Cal Poly Pomona
Technology and Environment: The Postwar House in Southern California


The postwar house is one of Southern California's most significant contributions to modernist architecture. Less recognized is how its new design forms were made possible by innovations in construction technology and lightweight materials. The exhibition explored the links between new building technologies and pioneering modern design by focusing on homes designed by some of Southern California's most celebrated 20th-century architects. The project also incorporated a technical examination of the thermal performance of these residences, a timely topic for architectural practice.

Exhibition research support: $140,000 (2011); exhibition support: $160,000


Los Angeles Conservancy
Curating the City: Modern Architecture in L.A.


For Modern Architecture in L.A., the Los Angeles Conservancy built on its award-winning 2004 project Curating the City: Wilshire Boulevard, and approach Los Angeles' architectural landscape as a county-wide museum, showcasing architectural or historical themes through tours, public programs, and print and web-based resources. Thr programs included tours, panel discussions, online activities, a film screening at the architecturally significant 1964 Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, and youth outreach.

Programming support: $246,000 (2012)


William Pereira, LACMA, photo by Julius Shulman
 
Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA)
Presence of the Past: Peter Zumthor Reconsiders LACMA


Recognizing that cities are often judged by their museums, LACMA examined its own building history as a lens through which to understand the past and future of Los Angeles. Through models, drawings, and photographs, the exhibition explored the complicated history of the relationship between LACMA and its Hancock Park site. Swiss architect Peter Zumthor has been commissioned to rethink the east campus and he presented a concept that provides new insight into the meaning and function of an encyclopedic museum. The exhibition also included highlights of Zumthor's career.

Exhibition support: $300,000 (2012)


Machine Project
The Machine Project Field Guide to L.A. Architecture


The Machine Project Field Guide to L. A. Architecture was a citywide series of performances at architecturally significant sites throughout Spring and Summer 2013. The series served as a performative and experimental conterpoint to the other partner exhibitions, highlighting modern landmarks that are under-appreciated or less well known. Participating artists included Asher Hartman, Johanna Reed, David Eng, Emily Mast, Jibade-Khalil Huffman, Dawn Kasper, Liz Glynn, Fiona Conner, Cliff Hengst, Kamau Patton, Cayetano Ferrer, Paul Fraser, and Joshua Beckman.

Programming support: $108,000 (2012)


Jef Raskin with Bloxes, courtesy Linda Blum
 
MAK Center for Art and Architecture
Everything Loose Will Land


The MAK Center's project explored the intersection between architecture and other visual arts in Los Angeles during the 1970s. Reframing architect Frank Lloyd Wright's famous quip—"Tip the world over on its side and everything loose will land in Los Angeles"—the exhibition took a closer look at a generation of architects and artists who began to share workspaces, neighborhoods, and institutions and forge new creative ground by adopting each other's practices.

Exhibition research support: $140,000 (2011); exhibition and publication support: $200,000 (2012)


Walt Disney Concert Hall, Gehry Partners
 
The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles
A New Sculpturalism: Contemporary Architecture from Southern California


The exhibition considered the formal innovation of Frank Gehry's work, its impact on the next generation of L.A. architects, and its ties to the region's diverse topography and artistic practices. Although monographic exhibitions and publications have been devoted to many of the individuals who were included, they had never been appraised as a group, with a focus on their relationship to Gehry.

Exhibition research support: $170,000 (2011); exhibition and publication support: $275,000


Pasadena Heritage
Pasadena 1940 Forward: Residential Architecture of the Recent Past


While Pasadena is generally associated with the early 20th-century architecture of the Craftsman bungalow, the city also has a rich, yet little-known legacy of modern architecture. Pasadena Heritage broadened public understanding of the city's modern architecture through a tour of houses designed by renowned Southern California architects, along with a related lecture and oral history project.

Programming support: $41,000 (2012)


Architecture Gallery architects,  1980 Ave Pildas.
 
Southern California Institute of Architecture (SCI-Arc)
A Confederacy of Heretics: The Architecture Gallery, Venice 1979


SCI-Arc examined the pivotal role played by the temporary gallery held in the home of architect Thom Mayne for several weeks in 1979. Each week the space showcased the work of an emerging architect or group, including Eugene Kupper, Roland Coate, Frederick Fisher, Frank Dimster, Frank Gehry, Peter de Bretteville, Morphosis (Thom Mayne and Michael Rotondi), Studio Works (Craig Hodgetts and Robert Mangurian), and Eric Owen Moss, thus becoming a crucible for contemporary architectural culture in L.A.

Exhibition research support: $135,00 (2011); exhibition support: $125,000 (2012)


UCLA, Architecture and Urban Design
Extreme IDEAS: Architecture at the Intersection


To carry the narrative of Modern Architecture in L.A. forward, UCLA Architecture and Urban Design presented Extreme IDEAS: Architecture at the Intersection, a series of five programs that charted a new dynamic future for architecture. Programs looked beyond the field's traditional boundaries and explored topics arising from unexpected quarters—video games, the film industry, and biomedical engineering. The format and locations of the programs mirrored their innovative content, from a lecture at the Griffith Observatory to a Pecha Kucha at the Howard Hughes Hangar in Playa Vista, located near Google and YouTube headquarters.

Programming support: $165,000 (2012)


An additional grant was awarded to:

Southern California Institute of Architecture (SCI-Arc)
Online Media Archive


In 2011, SCI-Arc was awarded a Getty grant to develop the SCI-Arc Online Media Archive. Launched in Fall 2012, the archive provides free access to over 1000 hours of continually-updated videos of architecture and design lectures, symposia, and events related to SCI-Arc and featuring the most significant voices in architecture since 1974.

Implementation support: $200,000 (2011)

Image at top of page: Formosa 1140, 2008, Lorcan O'Herlihy Architects [LOHA]. Photo: © Lawrence Anderson/Esto