As Modern as We Could Be | KCET
As Modern as We Could Be
I went over to the Capitol Records building on Monday for a preview of Pacific Standard Time Presents: Modern Architecture in L.A. from the Getty, a kind of PST 1.5, which begins in April. The Getty museum will have the big show -- Overdrive: L.A. Constructs the Future, 1940 - 1990 -- and partner institutions, including LACMA and the Museum of Contemporary Art, will present complementary exhibitions and programs. (I've been involved with a couple of these programs.)
On Thursday, as part of the Central Library's ALOUD series, I moderated a conversation between Jenny Watts, photography curator at the Huntington Library, Art Collections and Botanical Gardens, and Christopher Hawthorne, architectural critic of the Los Angeles Times. Both wrote chapters for Maynard L. Parker: Modern Photography and the American Dream, published by the Huntington and Yale University Press. Jenny also was the book's editor. (I wrote a brief introduction.)
The architect Eric Owen Moss, speaking at the Getty preview event, poked polemically at museums neatening up the past and letting exhibition patrons cast it in a nostalgic light. Watts and Hawthorne reminded their audience of the exclusivity in the modernism of John Lautner, Cliff May, A. Quincy Jones, Harwell Hamilton Harris, and many others. For people of color, the new mostly belonged to other people.
The neighborhoods were segregated, but those houses were beautiful and even affordable in their day. They were partial answers to a question, although today we might prefer a different answer to how we make a home here.
I cannot help but still think, as I wrote in introducing Maynard L. Parker:
Three City Council members filed a motion today to cut the Los Angeles Police Department's budget by $100 million to $150 million for the 2020-2021 fiscal year.
While protests against police brutality continued to dominate headlines, Los Angeles County reported more than 40 additional deaths today due to the coronavirus, while the number of cases topped 58,000.
The 1992 Los Angeles Uprising was the nation’s first multiethnic urban riot, one that points to the complexities of policing in a city of different racial and ethnic groups.
Despite being overshadowed by a week of protests against police brutality, the coronavirus continued to claim lives in Los Angeles County, with health officials today announcing 60 new deaths and 1,202 new confirmed COVID-19 cases.
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