The Birth of California Modernism
By Robert Sweeney & Judith Sheine
University of California Press, $39.95, 112 pages
I love midcentury architecture and was immediately intrigued by Schindler, Kings Road, and Southern California Modernism. 835 Kings Road, also known as the Schindler House, is the focus of this very interesting book. The Viennese architect, R.M. Schindler, completed the house in 1922 and the house was considered quite radical for the time in southern California. There were three-sided rooms and the outside was always invited into the home. Also the bedroom had no walls and overall the house was focused on “space, climate, light and mood.” Sweeney’s book dissects Schindler’s early influences, as well as, his early work in Vienna. Sweeney outlines Schindler’s move to the United States, meeting with Frank Lloyd Wright and his Communist beliefs.
Schindler, Kings Road, and Southern California Modernism displays early architectural drawings, watercolors and photos showing the step-by-step process of building 835 Kings Road. There are also numerous color photos of the home today. Schindler, although considered radical at the time, is believed to have defined California Modernism as it is today. If you are interested in architecture, especially modern architecture, this book will be a fascinating read for you.
Reviewed By Seniye Groff