Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Well I've gone fron Whittier to Washington, just like President Nixon! A layoff from my commercial architecture firm put me in the job market again. I ended up with a new job and a cross country move. Since April I have been living it up in the Nation's Capital. Washington is a great place with tons of architecture, so maybe I'll make more than 4 posts a year. When I started this blog I though it would chronicle my journey in the California desert, but I got sidetracked into the suburbs of Los Angeles. Now I find myself in Southeast Washington D.C. My passion is still for modernism, particularly mid-century modernism, and as it turns out despite a reputation for neo-classicism Washington has a tremendous treasure trove of modern buildings; both of high and low quality. In southern California modernism was much more prevalent, and particularly a whimsical Googie/Tommorowland variety. Here the strain of modernism was of the heroic utopian variety, which befits a city like Washington where they have historically striven to reach for the more perfect planned city. Washington is a european city with an american accent. It is very much like Paris with a low rambling character, broad boulevards bisect the city with glimpses of the monuments and capitol. In France the gardens are of a very formal quality, but in DC the mall and other greenspaces have a very informal american vibe with lots of paths for bikers and joggers and sports fields.