Synopses & Reviews
and#147;A handsome exhibition catalog.and#8221;and#151;Wall Street Journal
and#147;[This volume] offers non-Angelinos a chance to reframe their imagined views of this quintessentially quirky conurbation.and#8221;and#151;New York Review of Books
and#147;Masterful. . . . Under four wide headings De Wit and Alexander invite a stellar roster of historians to exhume the cityand#8217;s past.and#8221;and#151;Los Angeles Review of Books
and#147;Overdrive: LA Constructs the Future, 1940and#150;1990 . . . produces an incisive critique and an oddly exhilarating reverie by excavating remainsand#151;archival photos and ads, engineering drawings, architectural renderings and modelsand#151;that document LAand#8217;s continuing failures in architecture and urban planning.and#8221;and#151;Bookforum
and#147;This book is unmatched in portraying the personality of Los Angelesand#8217;s urbanism. Essential for all students of architecture and urbanism.and#8221;and#151;Library Journal
and#147;An eye-opening compendium of architectural drawings and bandw photos . . . along with 11 essays on how Los Angeles came to be what it is today.and#8221;and#151;Book News
From 1940 to 1990, Los Angeles rapidly evolved into one of the most populous and influential industrial, economic, and creative capitals in the world. During this era, the region was transformed into a laboratory for cutting-edge architecture. Overdrive: L. A. Constructs the Future, 1940andndash;1990
examines these experiments and their impact on modern design, reframes the perceptions of Los Angelesandrsquo;s dynamic built environment, and amplifies the exploration of the cityandrsquo;s vibrant architectural legacy.
The drawings, models, and images highlighted in the Overdrive exhibition and catalogue reveal the complex and often underappreciated facets of Los Angeles and illustrate how the metropolis became an internationally recognized destination with a unique design vocabulary, canonical landmarks, and a coveted lifestyle. This investigation builds upon the groundbreaking work of generations of historians, theorists, curators, critics, and activists who have researched and expounded upon the development of Los Angeles. In this volume, thought-provoking essays shed more light on the exhibitionandrsquo;s narratives, including Los Angelesandrsquo;s physical landscape, the rise of modernism, the regionandrsquo;s influential residential architecture, its buildings for commerce and transportation, and architectsandrsquo; pioneering uses of bold forms, advanced materials, and new technologies.
Los Angelesandrsquo;s ability to facilitate change, experiment, recalibrate, and forge ahead is one of its greatest strengths. Future generations are destined to harness the regionandrsquo;s enviable resources to create new layers of architectural innovations.
The related exhibition will be held at the J. Paul Getty Museum from April 9 to July 21, 2013.
About the Author
Wim de Wit is an architectural historian and head of the Department of Architecture and Contemporary Art at the Getty Research Institute in Los Angeles. He has organized numerous exhibitions and contributed to catalogues about topics in the history of twentieth-century architecture, including Lessons from Bernard Rudofsky: Life as a Voyage
(Birkhandauml;user, 2007). Christopher James Alexander is assistant curator of architecture and design at the Getty Research Institute. He is the author of Julius Shulmanandrsquo;s Los Angeles