A Conversation with Documentarian Jason Cohn on Charles and Ray Eames (Part 1)

Late last year I had the pleasure of speaking with Jason Cohn about his latest film project called Eames: The Architect and the Painter, which is set to air in Fall 2011 on the PBS show American Masters. A condensed version of the first half of our conversation is published below. You can find the second half here.

I’ve known Jason for over 30 years and have followed his career with a lot of interest. When I started Curating Los Angeles (CLA) last Fall, I knew I would interview him at some point about his work, since as you’ll learn below, he is as fascinated by Los Angeles as I am and appreciates the many ways that the city has nurtured creative energies and impulses in a wide variety of fields.

Coming Soon to SCI-Arc

Two new exhibitions are coming to the Southern California Institute of Architecture (SCI-Arc), located in downtown LA. Since they don’t open until early February, I haven’t seen of either of them yet. However, I am very intrigued by their descriptions and look forward to visiting the school so I can check them out in person. It sounds like I’m in for two thought-provoking and challenging experiences. If you happen to see either of these shows before me, please leave a comment on this site letting us know what you think.

Esotouric’s East Side Babylon Bus Tour – Exploring Some of L.A.’s Most Horrifying Forgotten Crimes

I’m always on the lookout for opportunities to spend time with other people who love LA as much as I do. One of the best ways to find these kindred spirits is to take a tour with them, and that’s exactly what I did several weeks ago. On Saturday afternoon, December 11th, I participated in a bus tour called East Side Babylon, run by Esotouric, a local tour company. The excursion introduced me to a facet of local history that I was largely unfamiliar with; namely, local crime tales from communities east of the Los Angeles river, including East LA and the cities of Montebello and Commerce.

KCRW’s DnA Looks Back at 2010: It Wasn’t All Bad – Bright Spots in LA Design

As the year comes to a close, KCRW’s Frances Anderton, producer and host of the monthly program Design and Architecture (DnA), looks back and finds that although 2010 was hard on the design and construction industry in Los Angeles, the city united around a quest for community. LA design experts share their favorite projects; Maureen Sullivan, Lisa Watson and residents […]

Guy Martin – Digital Craftsman

Photo via Metropolis Magazine web siteLast week Metropolis Magazine published a really interesting interview with Guy Martin, principal of Guy Martin Design. Trained as an architect, Martin runs a very unique practice in that he doesn’t design buildings. Rather, his work is focused on using robot technology and in-house fabrication to create physical objects from digital […]

Discovering The William Andrews Clark Library – A Genuine LA Treasure

In early October, I attended a SurveyLA presentation at The William Andrews Clark Library and wrote about the event. In that October 12th post, I promised to write a follow-up piece about the library itself because it made such an impression on me. As you’ll learn below, the Clark is not just any library. Rather, it’s a cultural resource that deserves a more prominent place in the city’s consciousness because it houses a world renowned rare book collection, hosts a variety of lectures and musical programs that are open to the public and because its founder generously contributed to the city’s early cultural development. I hope you’ll want to make time for a visit after reading this post.

SurveyLA

I have always admired the ease with which the people of Los Angeles embrace change and look to the future. And yet, I know this attribute has led to much destruction of what came before, the obliteration of our past and at times, the elimination of existing communities that were seemingly invisible to those with the power to impose change for their own benefit.

During the last century, we lost once vibrant neighborhoods such as Bunker Hill, Chavez Ravine, and the old Chinatown. We also lost numerous architecturally and/or historically significant buildings, such as the Brown Derby restaurant, the Columbia Savings Building, the Ambassador Hotel, Welton Becket and Associates office building and the Hollywood Star Lanes bowling alley, just to name a few.