Mid-Century Modernism In The Desert
Every February for the past several years I head out to the desert with my family to visit my parents who migrate down to Palm Springs from Canada for a month or two – to escape the harsh tundra freeze.
The weather was glorious and the setting even more spectacular for a long- weekend get-away and a visit to Palm Spring’s 10th Annual Modernism Show.
Nestled in the Coachella Valley, Palm Springs is the hub of Mid-Century modern design and architecture and offers many well-preserved examples of elegant homes constructed during the ‘40s, 50’s and 60’s. So it makes sense for the City to host this event, and offers a week full of tours, lectures, screenings and the Modernism Show and sale.
Steven and I leave the kids with my parents, and head into town for a day to celebrate the modern culture, gather some design inspiration and transport ourselves back in time of the Rat Pack.
The Show features almost 80 exhibitors from across the U.S and Europe presenting some of the most refined and classic 20th Century decorative and fine art pieces. Weaving in and out of the aisles, you can’t help but engage the dealer to learn of the history of each piece.
One of my favorite finds, was a one-of-a-kind spiral staircase where each shiny chrome sphere-shaped step is finished with its original red carpeting. It’s truly striking and in the right home would make for a most compelling focal point. The owners of the www.offthewallantiques.com have a keen eye for spying the most unique treasures.
Taking a drive through the old neighborhoods of Palm Springs you’ll pass by the historic Kaufman House – a 1946 glass, steel and stone landmark designed and built by the architect Richard Neutra – THE quintessential Mid-Century classic. A restoration of the structure in the mid 1990’s spawned a renewed respect and interest in this Architectural style.
I realize this design style doesn’t appeal everyone, but should you have the opportunity to visit a Modernism show in your city – make the trip and at least enjoy the travel back in time.
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Article by Lori Gilder, Architectural Interior Designer, Los Angeles, Ca. © 2010 Lori Gilder. Interior Makeovers Inc