Patrick McGrew
Patrick McGrew

Architect, author, architectural historian and photographer, Patrick McGrew received his Bachelor of Architecture degree from the University of Oklahoma in 1965. He has been actively engaged in the architectural profession, specializing in historic preservation, since then. McGrew has been a licensed architect in the State of California since 1970, as well as a holder of the NCARB (national licensing) certificate. As an author and historian, McGrew places a high value on the objectivity and completeness of his written works. He has several years’ experience in research, writing, practicing and teaching architecture with academic and historical agencies and institutions. He has made a substantial contribution to the recorded knowledge of California architectural history through research and publication of a body of scholarly work in the field. His experience has included the preparation of numerous historic research reports, National Register nominations, and San Francisco and Palm Springs historic site nominations, as well as the preparation of plans and specifications for architectural preservation projects.

Patrick McGrew’s knowledge and reputation in the field of historic preservation derives from his public service as the long-time President of San Francisco’s Landmarks Preservation Advisory Board, which extended over an eighteen year span beginning in1978 when he was first appointed by then-Mayor George Moscone; he served the next ten years under Mayor Dianne Feinstein. Although he served less than a year under Mayor Art Agnos, it was Agnos who declared November 17, 1991 “Landmarks of San Francisco Day” to honor the publication of McGrew’s first book, Landmarks of San Francisco (Harry Abrams, New York, 1991). Reappointed in 1992 by Mayor Frank Jordan, McGrew served four more years on San Francisco’s Landmarks Board. McGrew’s second book, Landmarks of Los Angeles was published by Abrams in 1994.

Q&A

LOCATION: Palm Springs

FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/patrickmcgrew

WHAT INSPIRES ME: Curiosity and skepticism?

FAVORITE PLACE TO GET AWAY IN MY AREA: Palm Spring Art Museum

FAVORITE WRITERS: Witold Rybczynski, Herbert Muschamp, Paul Goldberger

ARTIST/CREATIVE YOU’D WANT TO HAVE LUNCH WITH: Le Corbusier or Thom Mayne

MOST OVER-HYPED ARTIST: Daniel Libeskind

PERFECT SOUNDTRACK FOR WRITING: The birds in my garden.

WHY I LOVE WHERE I LIVE: The beauty of the setting and the collection of historic architecture

ART YOU MAKE: I love Life Drawing, but haven’t done much lately…

Recent Articles
Flipping Krisels: Historic Preservation for Fun and Profit
Flipping Krisels: Historic Preservation for Fun and Profit
In Palm Springs, the financing of preservation projects is still borne primarily by private investors - individuals wise enough to see how an investment in integrity can also turn a profit.
Mr. Nolan Builds His Dream House: Palm Springs' Cary Grant House, The Backstory
Mr. Nolan Builds His Dream House: Palm Springs' Cary Grant House, The Backstory
The Palm Springs and L.A. homes of past celebrities reflect personal histories more interesting than those that derive from subsequent tenancies by members of the glitterati.
A California Architect Visits Cuba
A California Architect Visits Cuba
Cuba, a world forcibly divorced from the American mainland, is not a world apart. It is a synthesis of the major design movements of the 20th Century and a rich repository of architectural history awaiting rediscovery by the world at large.
The Hidden History of the Kaufmann House
The Hidden History of the Kaufmann House
Arguably the most famous home in Palm Springs, the Kaufmann desert house is a masterpiece - a structure of unexcelled modernism and sophistication that continues to serve as a model of its type, style, and period.
Steel Modern: A History of Steel Houses in Palm Springs
Steel Modern: A History of Steel Houses in Palm Springs
Steel construction is the once and future champion of residential construction in the desert. Artbound explores how the iconic pre-fabricated modular houses of architects Wexler & Harrison have come to define the architectural heritage of Palm Springs.
Destructing Modernism: Will Palm Springs School District Tear Down a Wexler Building?
Destructing Modernism: Will Palm Springs School District Tear Down a Wexler Building?
Palm Springs School Board vs. Modernism. Will the demolition of a modernist building by architect Don Wexler erase history?
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