I got interested in modernist architecture a couple of years ago, on a trip to LA. We were driving through the Hollywood Hills, when I looked up and saw the house pictured above. (These are the pictures I took after scaring the life out of James by screaming and making him stop the car.) Honestly, I had a bit of a moment. The sun was setting and the house was glowing in the dusk light. And everything about it – the colours, the shape, the glass, the VIBE – fitted so perfectly into the hill that it was quite honestly breathtaking.
Later, I found out it was the Garcia House (also known as the Rainbow House) by John Lautner. On Mulholland Drive, it was built for jazz composer and arranger Russ Garcia in 1958. It has been used in films (it was blown up in Lethal Weapon II) and as a romantic bolthole for PJ Harvey and Vincent Gallo. Lautner is also responsible for another house I drool over, Silvertop, on a street high in the hills of one of my favourite LA nabes, Silver Lake. (Check out the 'View of pool through living room' pic. Argh!)
You can see the interiors of the Garcia House here. Apparently it is getting a pool put in, too. And this is a really interesting article about the people who live in the house now and how they deal with all the people gawking at it. It also interviews the current tenant of Pierre Koenig's Stahl House that I've been banging on about.