This is the fifth installment of our Pacific Standard Time Presents diary, tracking modern architecture happenings all over the city during the Getty's big initiative. Check out our previous entries:
You know what the problem is with writing diary entries every two weeks? SO MUCH CAN HAPPEN IN TWO WEEKS! I had just tapped 'publish' on my last column when a bombshell dropped somewhere near the Geffen Contemporary: Frank Gehry, the Columbo of the architecture world, is back in the MOCA show, you guys!
“A New Sculpturalism” opened this past Sunday, just a smidge behind schedule but now with all of its regularly scheduled participants. Although some may be, um, participating a bit too much? According to the Architect's Newspaper, Thom Mayne is trying to curate the show (which already has a curator, Christopher Mount) by sending emails to participants and adding even more architects to the show. It's something you can ask him about in person at the members' opening on June 22. Expect lots of heavy drinking and sighs of relief.
Over at LACMA, as part of their PSTP show “The Presence of the Past,” the big news was the big reveal of Peter Zumthor's big black amoeba of a building, also known as the Black Flower, the Ink Blot, The Blob, Attack of the Tar Pit, or, my favorite, “an elegant reimagination of the Cylon Basestar from Battlestar Galactica.” (There were several references to it as some version of Los Angeles County Museum on Fire which gets no points for originality.)
No matter what you call it, the new building is coming to swallow parts of the 1965 campus, as discussed in a conversation with director Michael Govan and Zumthor last week — you can watch their whole conversation online. Go see the show, then walk around the campus, imagining how Renzo Piano's SoCal junior high aesthetic will mesh with Zumthor's Creature from the Black Lagoon. (Personally, I really like it.)
Up on the hill, a bit of a downer: The Getty's Wim de Wit is leaving us for the Bay Area, where he'll be the architecture and design curator at the Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Center for Visual Arts at Stanford University. It's a bummer because de Wit has been the driving force behind much of this PSTP effort, and his departure, especially at this moment, is certainly bittersweet for L.A. We'll miss you, Wim!
This coming weekend, CicLAvia returns June 23 with an architecturally focused “Iconic Wilshire Boulevard,” on the same day as the MAK Center's tour of houses featured in its excellent show “Everything Loose Will Land.” Why not bike the boulevard in the morning and check out houses in the afternoon? Also coming up: the Hammer's Summer Solstice party celebrating their beautiful A. Quincy Jones exhibition and some sweet tours of Jones homes.
And if this whole PSTP thing isn't enough architecture for you, there's also the Los Angeles Design Festival, which kicked off with a party at the Standard yesterday. Ping pong, y'all.
Until then… Stay blobby.