Richard Neutra – A Local Architect
Richard Neutra was born in Vienna, Austria. He moved to Los Angeles in the 1920s. Neutra had a major impact in Silver Lake and throughout Southern California as an architect. He is considered one of the most important modernist architects.
Neutra’s first Los Angeles piece of work was as a landscape architect. Landscaping is where he got his start as an architect. He provided a design for the garden of Schindler’s beach house as well as designed for Philip Lovell in Newport Beach. Neutra also provided designs for a pergola and wading pool for Frank Lloyd Wright and Schindler’s complex for Aline Barnsdall on Olive Hill in Hollywood. This dates back from 1922 through 1925.
Neutra later began to embark in designing buildings. He began developing his own practice. He embodied the International Style. Twelve of Neutra’s buildings have been designated as Historic Cultural Monuments.
Neutra VDL was designed seventy-five years ago by Richard Neutra on Silver Lake Boulevard. It is a “glass house” with a rooftop and balcony garden that he designated the VDL Research house. The design was meant to accommodate two families and his office.
Richard designed most of his projects here. Over a thirty-year period, Neutra’s designs span over four continents. Some of Neutra’s legacy designs include the first modern school, residences and public buildings.
Richard Neutra’s wife left the VDL Research house to Cal Poly Pomona College’s Department of Environmental Design.
Richard Neutra’s son Dion continues to follow his father’s style of rigorously geometric but airy structures that represent the West Coast take on the mid-century modern. He has taken on the task of keeping his father’s legacy alive by keeping the Silver Lake offices designed and built by Richard Neutra open.
The building is called the Neutra Office Building and is considered a National Register of Historic Places.
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