Palm Springs, CA
As part of the Getty-led initiative Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA, the Museum’s contribution Living Architecture: Lina Bo Bardi and Albert Frey is an unprecedented exploration of two visionary architects who critically expanded the meaning and practice of modern architecture. Bo Bardi (1914–1992) emigrated from Italy to Brazil in 1946 and Frey (1903–1998) from Switzerland to the United States in 1930. Though the two did not meet, Bo Bardi translated Frey’s treatise Living Architecture for Domus, and their personal and professional odysseys are representative of the emergence of São Paulo and Southern California as architectural and cultural laboratories in the middle of the 20th century. They each created modernist houses, furniture, public buildings, and approaches to urban design that move beyond strict rationalism to embrace the social and environmental contexts specific to their adoptive homes in Brazil and Southern California. Bo Bardi and Frey shared a belief in architecture as a way to connect people, nature, building, and living. As they embraced modern technologies, they responded to the climate and terrain of the local environment and the people whose personal and social experiences were touched by those conditions.
Credit: Exhibition overview from museum website.
Whether or not you go, In Search of a Living Architecture explores the work of Albert Frey, a master of Modernist architecture. The value of his work is finally coming to be recognized. The serene European formalism of his projects melded with the California landscape he came to love to create a new architecture that was wholly Frey's. This is an exact reprint of Frey's scarce 1939 statement of his ideals in architecture and design. Well-illustrated with black and white photographs of Frey's early projects and other structures and landscapes, this book advances our understanding of his esthetic criteria. The book is crisply designed, a beautiful object in itself, as well as being a fascinating study of the thinking of this important architect.