Friday, February 22, 2008

Modernism Week in Palm Springs

We are toward the end of the popular "Modernism Week" in Palm Springs. It is an annual event that focuses on the MidCentury Modern style that originated in the Palm Springs desert community. It features the Modernism Show and includes groovy stuff from the Palm Springs Preservation Foundation, the Palm Springs Historical Society, the Palm Springs Modern Committee, the Palm Springs Chamber of Commerce and the Palm Springs Art Museum. It is a time to see the best examples of mid-century "modern" design, architecture events and programs in the Palm Springs area. We usually attract visitors from around the world who seek authentic "modern" architecture and art.
But What is MidCentury Modern, you ask?
In the midst of the 20th century, the Palm Springs desert area gave birth to a unique artistic "modern" movement that is now referred to as desert modernism. It is distinctive particularly for the use of metal, stone, glass, deep overhangs, and a variety of other natural and man made materials. It usually focuses on bringing the outdoors inside, and captures stunning mountain views and defines the Palm Springs desert lifestyle of informal elegance. It was wildly embraced by the hip, swinging crowd that lived and vacationed in the Palm Springs desert in the 50's and 60's.
The "modern" designs inspired a significant crop of local design talent and attracted many visiting architects who came to learn how to adapt the modern techniques of desert living to recreate modern structures elsewhere in the US and around the world. Palm Springs is very fortune that much of our "modern" legacy still exists today and is in tact for future generations to appreciate and enjoy.
Modernism Week
This year, Modernism Week started on February 15 and runs through Saturday, February 24. There have been all sorts of cool events around town. An event at the Palm Springs Convention Center featured nearly a hundred different well known art dealers present a variety of design movements of the 20th Century.


Tod said...

I love this stuff. I watched an art documentary recently that showed some of the amazing homes built in your town during the 50's & 60's.

Next time in the States, Palm Springs is deffo on my stop list.

Canadian flake said...

Wow amazing always.

Thanks for sharing

Seamus said...

That style of architecture was always the thing to aspire to when I was growing up. It makes such sense placed in a desert setting.

Jimmi said...

Yes I think Phoenix adopted a lot of these trends and you will see many Mid Century Architecture here.

Mary Ann said...

Rick, you're really smoking with interesting 'stuff' to read here. I'd like for you to have if you'll accept it. this award. It's the "E for Excellent" blog and blogger award.

Lewis said...

I think that the 50s-60s were tremendously invluential times in many, many respects. I still talk about them, things that happened or were invented in that time frame.

Seraphine said...

Great architecture and desert warmth sounds so good right now.

Hot Toddy said...

That is so cool! Would love to come for a visit sometime.

Steven said...

Thank you for well-versed tidbits of great information. Definitely an event that I sadly missed.

The last photo reminds me of someone's home. Or I've seen it spotted in TV shows or movies. I want to say it was the home of a famous piano player because of the pool's shape and the bottom of the pool was painted with ebony and ivory keys.

Faux Pas blog said...

I went to architecture school with the daughter of one of the famous mid-century desert achitects. She introduced me to Palm Springs and her father's projects that are still standing. Thankfully, mid-century architecture is being preserved. So many great examples have met their demise with the wrecking ball.

Olivia said...

I am pretty sure I remember a painting by Edward Hopper, with one of these mid century modern whitewashed houses and someone's just slipped into the big blue swimming pool in the foreground.


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