While studying Architecture at university, an assignment was to choose one of two designated structures and report on it, either The Crystal Cathedral in Garden Grove or the Kings Road House, RM Schindler’s home he built in West Hollywood. I was the only student who chose the Schindler house, the Crystal Cathedral was more widely known. Schindler’s intimate, modernist home appealed to me so much more, the up-tilted concrete walls, open living spaces and sliding doors opening to private gardens, a seamless marriage of indoor to the outdoor courtyards.
Learning about Richard Neutra comes along with studying Schindler and Frank Lloyd Wright, all having worked together for a short time in the 1920’s. Neutra incorporated International Style so gracefully into the California landscape that it was being called “California Modernist”. Perfect lines and solid structure were combined with openness and airy floating glass, allowing sunlight to fill rooms unconfined by typical load-bearing walls. Neutra built a smaller home for himself and his family along the edge of the Silver Lake reservoir in 1933; another glorious box of light and air, facing the water, utilizing water, employing reflection as a means to enlarge the space in a sensory way.
In considering, and working with, homeLA, and now the literary group ENTER>text directed by Henry Hoke and Marco Franco Di Domenico, the potential to celebrate the influence of California Modernism with intimate performance washed over me in a highly personal way. My passion for and studies of progressive design in alignment with this concept of an artists’ salon of performers, dancers, artists of varying disciplines - I've also danced and performed beginning back in middle school - reacting to the house and it’s own daring inventions seemed to melt together so beautifully first in my imagination and now through the reality of these artists' creations. This collaboration celebrates dance, performance, installation, poetry, text, and the legacy of Neutra and California Modernism.