Drawings and Objects by Architects
Several rare color pencil drawings by the most influential 20th century architects, Frank Lloyd Wright are included in the exhibition. Perhaps the most significant of these is a preliminary rendering of a proposed Connecticut studio residence for the noted writer Ayn Rand. Designed three years after the release of Rand's most famous novel, The Fountainhead, the drawing is a one of the few tangible connections between the novelist and Wright (who is widely regarded as an inspiration for Rand's uncompromising protagonist Howard Roark).
Another significant residential project featured in the exhibition is Richard Neutra's Warren Tremaine Residence in Montecito, California. Represented in the exhibition by a highly articulated color pastel interior rendering, the project was commissioned at the very end of World War II. The Tremaine residence was widely published and is regarded as one of Neutra's most iconic domestic designs.
Illustrating the depth of ECAA's significant architectural holdings is a pair of projects that document the two of the most famous skyscrapers in the United States, the Empire State Building and the World Trade Center. The first is a suite of pencil drawing by the firm Shreve, Lamb & Harmon intended as the penultimate scheme for the floor plan layout of the Empire State Building. Executed of in October of 1929, the suite of drawings is a means of understanding the previously unimaginable scale and spatial opportunities the hundred-and-one floors of Empire Sate Building presented. On an opposing wall, and for the first time anywhere; the exhibition presents a highly important drawing for the World Trade Center. Commissioned by the building's architect Minoru Yamasaki, this presentation drawing was created in Los Angeles by the noted architectural draftsman Carlos Diniz to illustrate the potential for tower's unobstructed, open floor plan made possible by Yamasaki's innovative, yet ill-fated perimeter tube frame structural system.
Looking to conceptually motivated architectural projects, the exhibition also presents a suite of twenty-one color pencil drawings by the visionary architect, Lebbeus Woods. Entitled Underground Berlin, the project was conceived of in 1988, a year before the fall of the Berlin Wall, and intended as an rhetorical proposal for unifying the politically divided city via a subterranean metropolis linking both East and West Berlin. Recognized as the first of the Wood's site-specific political projects, Underground Berlin represents the zenith of a type of architectural rendering that is investigatory and conceptually motivated.
Drawings and Object by Architects runs concurrently with two prominent public exhibitions of architecture and design in Los Angeles. The first of these is From the Spoon to the City organized by the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and which presents modern and contemporary furniture and objects designed by architects. The second exhibition is Feathered Edge: A New Installation by Ball Nogues Studio at the MoCA Pacific Design Center gallery. ECAA not only represents this innovative Los Angeles-based design and fabrication firm led by Benjamin Ball and Gaston Nogues but also commissioned them to design and execute interiors for the gallery.