Sunday, July 13, 2008

Stunning Lautner @ The Hammer

Architect John Lautner is an all-time personal favorite.
The Hammer museum presents Between Earth and Heaven: The Architecture of John Lautner. A stunning exhibit displaying drawings and models for a dozen of Lautner's homes -- all on a background of slide shows boasting 360º views that make visitors feel like they're walking through the spaces themselves. The purpose of the exhibit is "not to show houses as objects, which was totally unimportant to Lautner," says architect and co-curator Frank Escher, "but to experience the space of the work, to see it as part of the landscape. That was [Lautner's] fundamental idea: he wanted you to connect to the landscape, to see the landscape the way he saw it."

Though "never as famous as Neutra, Schindler, or Eames," as art ltd. reminds us, Lautner had a unique perception of Southern California's landscape and ecology, and of the relationship between building, living, and the environment. "To enter a Lautner home is both to transcend ones natural environment and find oneself more profoundly a part of it all at once," art ltd. adds.

The exhibit may come across as dry and hard to chew for the average visitor, but for the architecture buff, it's simply a smorgasbord -- an exhilarating peekaboo into Launter's thinking and creative process.
[NYT 07/30/08: Bonding Humanity and Landscape in a Perfect Circle]
illustrations: 1/3. via Google Images; 2/5/6. via LAT; 4. via Hammer. 7. via Google Images.