Julius Shulman: Los Angeles

A New Book Pays Tribute to the Seminal Architectural Photographer

The mid-century modern landmarks that have come to epitomize California are collected in a new book, Julius Shulman Los Angeles: The Birth of a Modern Metropolis, which we excerpt above. A collaboration between Sam Lubell, the West Coast editor of the Architect’s Newspaper, and Douglas Woods, author of last year’s Classic Homes of Los Angeles, the tome brings together seven decades of work by the late New York–born photographer. “He saw buildings the way their creators did and had an intuitive ability to emphasize the human scale,” says Woods. "Shulman taught many of us how to see architecture.” The photographer’s shots of such design triumphs as Pierre Koenig’s Stahl House and Charles and Ray Eames’ eponymous Pacific Palisades model (built as part of the two-decade-long Case Study House project) remain some of the discipline's most famous, exporting the dream of Los Angeles to the world. “The image of [Koenig's] Case Study House 22 always takes my breath away," Lubell says. "It captures the daring of modernism and the open, unhindered lifestyle that it created. But it also captures the sense of wonder and the hope for the future prevalent in the country at the time.”


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