L.A. Plays Itself: SoCal Architecture at Geffen Contemporary

By Jim Allen

From April 21 to July 29, MoCA’s Geffen Contemporary will go where no art venue has gone before, by leaping into a comprehensive exploration of the leading edge of Southern California architecture from the last quarter-century. A New Sculpturalism: Contemporary Architecture in Southern California may be a mouthful to say, but it’s bound to be considerably easier on the eyes as it looks at the most intriguing SoCal architectural trends of the modern era.

The show encompasses everything from the ’80s “L.A. School” of postmodernist works by the likes of Thom Mayne, Franklin D. Israel, and Micheal Rotondi to the avant-garde urges that moved subsequent generations of architects to use Southern California as a blank canvas for their forward-looking notions. A broad spectrum of firms including Atelier Manferdini, Belzberg, Coscia Day, Gehry Partners, and many more are part of the program. Visitors will even be able to see contemporary concepts come to life in the four pavilions that up-and-coming L.A. architects were commissioned to create especially for the exhibition.