typical view of downtown l.a. from a car on the interstate
this tuesday i finally took a trip to l.a. that i had been planning for a while. one of the other buildings that i wanted to see was the eames house in santa monica, or pacific palisades. anyway i'll try not to bore you too much with the details, but the house was a case study house put on by arts and architecture magazine to expose the public to progressive housing concepts, with the eames house being one of the best examples. what i love most about his house is the fact that they used "off the shelf" parts, and were still able to create something so unique. i found the space to be very peaceful, and enjoyable. i think that the eames' were able to capture something that most architects practicing now are still trying to achieve. what i'd really like to talk about though is los angeles. i find this city fascinating. it's the ideal western city with it's endless one person per car freeways. it takes forever to get from one place to another, and chances are you're going to need a car to get you there. from the little that i've walked around downtown it wasn't as enjoyable as my experiences in chicago. but why do i still have this draw to visit it. is it part of my own"manifest destiny" to visit l.a.? or maybe it's because it's a city founded on the [american] dream. where everyone can have there own little space to enjoy. is that it. is that what makes little architectural wonders like the eames house and gamble house in this city so special? is it because in all of this pavement and smog and fumes and graffiti, that you're still able to create a little personalized space for yourself? i don't know. could l.a. ever turn into a pedestrian friendly environment like i've seen in chicago? or is this l.a's fate, is this what it was suppose to be. a city unlike chicago, or new york, where you can drive into the hills and look down on the chaos, while enjoying your own little piece of the earth. or is it a climate thing? cities like chicago, n.y., and boston have extreme climates. in the winter everyone is content to dwell in there little space, and be close to everything, and in the summer have the luxury of going to well established parks within the city. where as in places like l.a., san diego, and phoenix, you can enjoy your yard year round. but this doesn't hold true for places like k.c, or wichita. or maybe it's whenever a city takes "root". cities on the east where well established before the car, and cities in the west came of age after the introduction of the car. cities are very similar to people. my grandfathers generation come of age during the depression and WWII, and they know what sacrifices people sometimes have to make, where as me and my generation, just want to know if we can get it super-sized, and how many songs can be stored on the 40GB one. will we gain experience over time, or are we already branded like this? can we change? or would it be easier for l.a. to become pedestrian friendly? well i quite for now, because i can see that i'm rambling and getting off the point, enjoy the pics.
pathway in front of the eames house
front door to the house
courtyard in-between the house and studio