Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Did You Know? Googies and Landmarks....

In Seattle, Googie preservationists are lamenting the recent demolition of the city's Manning's Cafeteria, a landmark structure designed by the San Francisco Bay architect Clarence Mayhew.

What is "googie" architecture? Douglas Haskell, the former editor of Architectural Forum, coined the expression after touring a Googie's coffeeshop (1949) designed by Los Angeles architect John Lautner (1911-1994), proclaiming "this is Googie architecture!" Born after World War II in Southern California, Googie proliferated along highways, drawing the attentions of mobile consumers. Equated with American "car culture," Googie elements include: upswept cantilevered roofs, showy signage, exposed steel beams, and large expanses of glass.

Googie architecture in New Orleans is dwindling. It once proliferated among the motels of Tulane Avenue and Airline Highway, and can be seen today at Ted's Frostops.

Want to read more?

Check out at the Architecture Library:

Alan Hess. The Architecture of John Lautner. New York: Rizzoli, 1999. Call Number: NA 737.L37 A4 1999

Coming Soon to the Architecture Library:

Kirk Hastings. Doo Wop Motels: Architectural Treasures of the Wildwoods. Stackpole Books, 2007.

Alan Hess. Googie: Ultra Modern Roadside Architecture. Chronicle, 2004.

Or read the article in the Los Angeles Times about the New Orleans-born architect who has been called "John Lautner's architectural heir" [06 July 2008].

Want to see more?
If you are in the Los Angeles area, UCLA's Hammer Museum recently opened its exhibition, Between Earth and Heaven: The Architecture of John Lautner, which runs through 12 October 2008.

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