written by:
August 20, 2015
Shelter: Rethinking How We Live in Los Angeles, the inaugural exhibition in the A+D Architecture and Design Museum’s new downtown location, highlights projects both existing and unbuilt that reflect housing solutions in an ever-changing metropolis.
Architect Barbara Bestor's Blackbirds housing

Bestor Architecture, Blackbirds, Echo Park, Los Angeles

Blackbirds is a development of eighteen houses embedded in the hills of Echo Park; a progressive solution for high-quality dense housing in a city with little available land. The homes range from 1,200 to 1,900 square feet and are built around a living street; a central courtyard that comprises both landscape and parking areas, and serves as a stage for larger community functions. The placement of the houses in the hills mimics the older wooden houses of the area and deploys a strategy of “stealth density,” combining several houses into a single house-shaped volume. For instance, two free-standing houses are connected by flashing and the roofline creates the illusion of one house mass. Three houses, whose separation is masked, creates the illusion of two houses. This conceals the density of units by maintaining the neighborhood shape and landscape across the site. The community is a blend of private, semi-private, and public space, and promotes a sense of neighborhood by encouraging interaction and exchange.

Courtesy of 
Laure Joliet
1 / 6
LA Mas Backyard Basics

LA-MÁS, Backyard Basics: An Alternative Story of the Granny Flat

LA-Más will propose a collective approach to housing in Elysian Valley. Our vision is to write an alternative history for the future of the neighborhood that will serve as a resident-led and resident-owned model for low-rise high-density housing. The project will critically engage lot-lines and speculative buildable space at the air-rights level to envision new territories for low-density development. By utilizing the neighborhood’s existing buildable space, we will propose an architectural strategy that realizes the needs of Elysian Valley through cooperative development, combined entitlements, consolidated services, re-consideration of permitted granny flats, and other various opportunities that are possible only through a collective community approach.

2 / 6
PAR, 6030 Wilshire

PAR, 6030 Wilshire

PAR proposes a new model of high-rise courtyard housing on the LACMA Tower site, integrated with mass transit, in the central cultural district of Los Angeles. The high rise tower is an important element within the contemporary metropolis. However, towers have come to be predominantly defined by their height and, as a type, have become anonymous. Typical residential towers, while successful in providing density, rarely provide living environments with individuality or access to nature, two qualities that are the essence of Los Angeles living. Our proposal acts against this endemic anonymity and repetitiveness of the recent past and puts forth a new model for the contemporary tower. Its aim is to achieve, despite its size, an individual and personal character comprised of a stack of individual houses in which each house is unique and identifiable with a direct connection to nature. 

3 / 6

wHY, Unfolding Wilshire

wHY is examining a creative solution at the intersection of the physical, social, and regulatory space around ballooning costs and new transit offerings that will alleviate pressure on housing accessibility, diversity, and density. Using public space along the Metro Purple line as a site, this new infrastructure stands to become a landscape that inhabits the grey zone between regulation and disorder and challenges our expectations of domesticity in LA.

4 / 6
Koning Eizenberg 500 Broadway concept

Koning Eizenberg, 500 Broadway, Santa Monica

Located on the corner of 5th Street and Broadway in Santa Monica, this mixed-use project is made up of four groupings of apartments stacked atop ground-level retail. The rhythmic facade varies in configuration to provide all units with views to the ocean. The firm wove open spaces through the development, connecting it to the streetscape rather than sealing it off. “We’re leveraging public space in a densifying city, bringing in more sky, more light, more street access and more public life,” said firm principal Nathan Bishop.

5 / 6
A+D Museum Los Angeles

Established in response to the need for a space that would be devoted expressly to the exhibition of progressive architecture and design in Los Angeles, A+D Museum opened its doors in January 2001 in the Bradbury Building, one of downtown Los Angeles’ premiere landmark buildings.

Now located in downtown Los Angeles’ Arts District, A+D continues to be the only museum in Los Angeles where continuous exhibits of architecture and design are on view. Through exhibits, symposia, multidisciplinary projects, educational and community programming, A+D serves as a showcase for the work of important regional, national and international designers, providing a forum for contemporary issues in architecture, urbanism, and design that are helping to shape the city. Support from corporations, community businesses, foundations and individuals will ensure the continued vitality of what New York Times contributor Frances Anderton heralded as a “very real force in the city.”

 

Courtesy of 
Courtesy A+D Architecture and Design Museum>Los Angeles, Tom Bonner
6 / 6
Architect Barbara Bestor's Blackbirds housing

Bestor Architecture, Blackbirds, Echo Park, Los Angeles

Blackbirds is a development of eighteen houses embedded in the hills of Echo Park; a progressive solution for high-quality dense housing in a city with little available land. The homes range from 1,200 to 1,900 square feet and are built around a living street; a central courtyard that comprises both landscape and parking areas, and serves as a stage for larger community functions. The placement of the houses in the hills mimics the older wooden houses of the area and deploys a strategy of “stealth density,” combining several houses into a single house-shaped volume. For instance, two free-standing houses are connected by flashing and the roofline creates the illusion of one house mass. Three houses, whose separation is masked, creates the illusion of two houses. This conceals the density of units by maintaining the neighborhood shape and landscape across the site. The community is a blend of private, semi-private, and public space, and promotes a sense of neighborhood by encouraging interaction and exchange.

Shelter: Rethinking How We Live in Los Angeles features architects and designers’ creative new residential solutions that respond to the city’s increasing density, decreasing buildable land, new transit offerings, growing diversity, ballooning costs, and intense environmental challenges. The show offers speculative single or multi-family proposals along two sites: the Wilshire Corridor and the Los Angeles River. Invited firms for those sites include Los Angeles–based architecture and design practices Bureau Spectacular, LA Más, Lorcan O’Herlihy Architects, MAD Architects, PAR, and wHY. The exhibition also highlights recent constructed or in progress housing solutions by Kevin Daly Architects, Michael Maltzan Architecture, Bestor Architecture, OMA, R&A, Koning Eizenberg, and more. Proposals—including large-scale models, drawings, images, and video—will demonstrate how new forms of shelter can respond to changes in both the cultural fabric and physical landscape of the city, better addressing its pressing issues. Shelter: Rethinking How We Live in Los Angeles is organized by A+D Architecture and Design Museum>Los Angeles and co-curated by Sam Lubell and Danielle Rago. Exhibition design by the AECOM Los Angeles Design Studio.

“Los Angeles is experiencing tectonic shifts, densifying and embracing the public realm in ways it has never done, and facing unprecedented challenges, from environmental crises to mushrooming housing costs,” says Rago. “Yet much of its residential architecture does not respond to, or reflect, these changes. We hope Shelter’s teams inspire museum-goers and encourage designers, officials, and residents to update the city’s housing models, developing solutions that are more practical, innovative, and visionary.”

The show runs through November 6.

 

 

Join the Discussion

Loading comments...

Latest Articles

45 dva 2270 persp1 cmyk 0
The prospect of retirement doesn’t just signal the end of a career; it offers the chance to recalibrate and re-prioritize in life.
July 25, 2016
18
You don’t have to choose between sustainable energy and curb appeal.
July 19, 2016
jakemagnus queensland 1
Each week, we tap into Dwell's Instagram community to bring you the most captivating design and architecture shots of the week.
July 06, 2016
content delzresidence 013 1
Each week, we tap into Dwell's Instagram community to bring you the most captivating design and architecture shots of the week.
June 29, 2016
abc malacari marwick stair 01 0
A simple set of stairs is a remodel’s backbone.
June 28, 2016
Design Award of Excellence winner Mellon Square.
Docomomo US announces the winners of this year's Modernism in America Awards. Each project showcases exemplary modern restoration techniques, practices, and ideas.
June 27, 2016
monogram dwell sf 039 1
After last year’s collaboration, we were excited to team up with Monogram again for the 2016 Monogram Modern Home Tour.
June 27, 2016
switch over chicago smart renovation penthouse deck smar green ball lamps quinze milan lounge furniture garapa hardwood
A strategic rewire enhances a spec house’s gut renovation.
June 26, 2016
young guns 2016 emerging talent coralie gourguechon treviso italy cphotos by coralie gourguechon co produced by isdat planche anatomique de haut parleur1
Coralie Gourguechon's paper objects will make you see technology in a whole new way.
June 26, 2016
green machine smart home aspen colorado facade yard bocci deck patio savant
Smart technology helps a house in Aspen, Colorado, stay on its sustainable course.
June 25, 2016
Compact Aglol 11 television plastic brionvega.
The aesthetic appeal of personal electronics has long fueled consumer interest. A new industrial design book celebrates devices that broke the mold.
June 25, 2016
modern backyard deck ipe wood
An angled deck transforms a backyard in Menlo Park, California, into a welcoming gathering spot.
June 24, 2016
dscf5485 1
Today, we kicked off this year’s annual Dwell on Design at the LA Convention Center, which will continue through Sunday, June 26th. Though we’ve been hosting this extensive event for years, this time around is particularly special.
June 24, 2016
under the radar renovation napa
Two designers restore a low-slung midcentury gem in Napa, California, by an unsung Bay Area modernist.
June 24, 2016
Exterior of Huneeus/Sugar Bowl Home.
San Francisco–based designer Maca Huneeus created her family’s weekend retreat near Lake Tahoe with a relaxed, sophisticated sensibility.
June 24, 2016
light and shadow bathroom walnut storage units corian counter vola faucet
A Toronto couple remodel their home with a special emphasis on a spacious kitchen and a material-rich bathroom.
June 24, 2016
Affordable home in Kansas City living room
In Kansas City, an architecture studio designs an adaptable house for a musician on a budget.
June 23, 2016
modern lycabettus penthouse apartment oak vertical slats office
By straightening angles, installing windows, and adding vertical accents, architect Aaron Ritenour brought light and order to an irregularly shaped apartment in the heart of Athens, Greece.
June 23, 2016
kitchen confidential tiles custom cabinetry oak veneer timber house
A modest kitchen addition to a couple’s cottage outside of Brisbane proves that one 376-square-foot room can revive an entire home.
June 23, 2016
feldman architecture 0
Each week, we tap into Dwell's Instagram community to bring you the most captivating design and architecture shots of the week.
June 22, 2016
Blackened timber Dutch home
A modern dwelling replaces a fallen farmhouse.
June 22, 2016
hillcrest house interior kitchen 3
Seeking an escape from bustling city life, a Manhattan couple embarks on a renovation in the verdant Hudson Valley.
June 22, 2016
angular
Atelier Moderno renovated an old industrial building to create a luminous, modern home.
June 21, 2016
San Francisco floating home exterior
Anchored in a small San Francisco canal, this floating home takes its cues from a classic city habitat.
June 21, 2016
modern renovation addition solar powered scotland facade steel balcony
From the bones of a neglected farmstead in rural Scotland emerges a low-impact, solar-powered home that’s all about working with what was already there.
June 21, 2016
up in the air small space new zealand facade corrugated metal cladding
An architect with a taste for unconventional living spaces creates a small house at lofty heights with a starring view.
June 21, 2016
young guns 2016 emerging talent marjan van aubel london cwai ming ng current window
Marjan Van Aubel makes technology a little more natural.
June 21, 2016
urban pastoral brooklyn family home facade steel cypress double
Building on the site of a former one-car garage, an architect creates his family’s home in an evolving neighborhood of Brooklyn.
June 20, 2016
Modern Brooklyn backyard studio with plexiglass skylight, green roof, and cedar cladding facade
In a Brooklyn backyard, an off-duty architect builds a structure that tests his attention to the little things.
June 20, 2016
the outer limits paris prefab home living area vertigo lamp constance guisset gijs bakker strip tablemetal panels
In the suburbs of Paris, an architect with an eco-friendly practice doesn’t let tradition stand in the way of innovation.
June 20, 2016