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  • Julius Shulman: Modern Photographer

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    Julius Shulman Mirman Residence in Arcadia

    You've seen the style a thousand times...and chances are modern photographer Julius Shulman (1910-2009) had something to do with that.

    Following up on Cori's post Design in Style: Mid-Century Modern Roundup from yesterday, Mid-century Modernism is one of the most popular and recognizable design styles today (and one that we love!). One of the most common subsets of the style is California Modern, a style of residential architecture characterized by glass walls, oversized eaves and severe geometries, most commonly found in horizontal cities like Palm Springs and Los Angeles. These structures represent the quintessential post-war American Dream and for Mid-century Modern fans, the designers and architects of these homes are household names: Eames, Schindler, Neutra, Lautner, even Lloyd Wright.

    John Lautner Chemosphere Shulman photograph

    Shulman has photographed the most iconic Mid-century residences of the last seventy years, and his uncanny ability to give soul to these stark spaces brings up an interesting question: does a great subject make a great photograph, or vice versa?

    His images have immortalized the work of John Lautner (pictured above) and Richard Neutra (pictured below)...

    Neutra Chuey House by Julius Shulman

    ...bringing to light these striking edifices, not to mention the furniture within them. The impact of Mid-century thinking influences home decor design to this day. 

    mid century modern furniture designs

    Zuo Liftoff Black Dining Table, Holtkoetter Satin White and Satin Nickel Tripod Floor Lamp

    Not all of Shulman's photos included human subjects, but when they did, his models exuded the composed cool that came to define the Mid-century aesthetic.

    Shulman photograph of Pierre Koenig

    spencer house photo by julius shulman

    The California Modern lifestyle was, at least on the surface, one of extreme leisure, with cocktails and swimming pools featuring prominently. But it was also one that indicated a tectonic shift in perception, from Modernism as an abstruse European design philosophy to a populist aesthetic that could be mass produced and consumable. To buy modern floor lamps and furniture was suddenly as easy as picking up groceries. And with Mid-century Modern designs now available more than ever today, we are all the beneficiaries.

    We may never credit a single mid-century furniture or building design to Julius Shulman, but we might all want to thank him for turning the camera - and in the process, many of us - on to this revolutionary look.   

    Images: W5RAN, Peterson Live, Midcenturia, Pleasure PhotoTrndWntd

  • Summer White: Home Decor Items For After Labor Day

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    summer white

    Who says you can't wear white after Labor Day? Well, we think you can. But we also think white home decor items, simple pendant lighting, and modern furniture are stylish year-round!

    white home decor items

    1. Artcraft On the Spot Pendant Light 2. Profuse 19" Round Wall Clock 3. Zuo Wilco White Dining Table 4. Small Glacier Glass White Vase 5. Zuo Carnival White Modular Sofa

    Simply put, rock your style no matter what the season!

    Image: Fashion Gone Rogue

  • Architecture + Education: Maria Montessori

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    modern architecture

    Today's Google "doodle" depicts colourful elements key to the methods of Montessori education. The fun graphics is in commemoration of the 142nd birthday of Maria Montessori who is of course known for the philosophy of education that she pioneered.

    The Montessori approach is based around learning in an environment in which a number of physical objects are situated to stimulate natural instincts and self-directed learning.

    The Children's School in Stamford, Connecticut (both images) is located in Stamford, Connecticut. The design of this Montessori School for children aged 2-8 is based around the concept of a "one room schoolhouse", with each space connected to the next as well as to interior connected to the outdoors. The natural environment was also high on the agenda in the school’s construction with the building obtaining a LEED certification.

    modern interior architecture

    Never underestimate the impact of a child's surroundings when it comes to their education...

    Let's celebrate education today... And modern architecture of course!

    Images: Imagine School Design

  • Andrew Geller, American Architect, Photo Gallery

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    Architect Andrew Geller Photograph

    Andrew Geller, the innovative architect behind many a modernist Hampton beach house, including iconic A-Frame designs, recently passed away. Ever hear of the Bra, the Box Kite, the Cat, the Milk Carton, or the Reclining Picasso? These were all nicknames given to his visually striking and remarkable homes.

    He was also the designer of a line of prefabricated cottages sold under the name of Leisurama. Back in the 1950s, you could march into Macy’s in New York and, for a down payment of $490 and monthly payments of $73, get the house and all the modern furniture and furnishings. It was just such a house that se-off the infamous “Kitchen Debate” between Vice President Richard M. Nixon and Soviet Premier Nikita S. Khrushchev over the affluence of American and Soviet consumers.

    To celebrate Mr. Geller’s life and work, we’ve assembled a photo gallery of some of his more eye-popping home designs, along with a YouTube video clip from a documentary about the Leisurama houses, and a clip from Geller’s grandson, who is behind the Andrew Geller archive preservation project.

    The Levitas House Photo

    The Levitas House, 1963.

    Pearlroth House Photo

    The Pearlroth House (aka "The Bra"), 1959.

     

    Hunt House Photo

    The Hunt House, 1959.

    Elkin House Photo

    The Elkin House, 1966.

    Photos from the Andrew Geller website

    Click below to view the video on Geller's Leisurama designs.

  • Modern Architecture: Tree Houses

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    Modern Architecture

    Do you have a fascination for modern tree houses? We do! So we've rounded up a few of our favorites. This is where we wish we could spend our weekend...

    These tree houses, from around the world, aren't for kids, they're real modern architecture, in trees!

    Sometimes when life gets a little challenging, I think we would all love to escape to deep in the forest and hide in a tree house.

    These tiny homes add a whole new meaning to 'bringing the outdoors in', are we right?!

    Images: Yatzer, Fresh Home, Links & Things, Cush Design Studio, Free Spirit Spheres, Apartment Therapy

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